NB Chess is emerging from a year of lockdown and restrictions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Over-the-board chess is slowly returning, or at least the means of orchestrating that return is being progressed, in various theatres of activity. While that is in process, online play still holds a place, though reduced from lockdown proportions.
For 2021-22 we are expecting the return of Essex League competition over-the-board. At County level, a precursor to competetive County team events sees a County Regional pre-season competition, with the 2021-22 Counties Championships, Covid-19 permitting; the Union stages will take place October 2021 to March 2022, with the ECF National knockout stages April to July 2022.
The inclusion in the 2021-22 programme of further online events depends on need and the development of Covid issues over the winter.
In a normal season, ECA activities embrace:
- Essex League – standard play
- Summer Rapid Knockout
- Team Blitz
- Blitz Championship
- Lightning Championship
- Rapid Championship
A new initiative for individuals is the Back to Real Chess Fest at Wanstead House. Fest 1 was held on 14 August (2020-21) with Fest 2 (2021-22) set for 14 September. Links: Go to Fest 1 | Go to Fest 2
County Teams in External competition
County Regional pre-season competition
SCCU County Championships, October to March, including qualification for:
ECF County Championships, April to July
At the present time (late August 2021) the resumption of the Essex League is being actively pursued with Clubs and a meeting of the General Purposes Committee (“GPC”) has been fixed for 15 September on Zoom.
Arrangements for County competition to resume are already being pursued.
In short, the activities shown in bold in the above programme are actively being planned to resume. Of the individual events, only the Blitz is usually held early in the Season, but is not yet planned, the deliberations on resuming the League and County teams being sufficient commitments to pursue in the current circumstances. The Lightning Championship is played on the same day as the Team Blitz, in June, with the Rapid Championship a week or so before or after. Therefore, the planning to resume those individual events will probably not be addressed until the spring.