The photo above was taken in 1990 (or thereabouts). It shows the Suffolk Junior Championships when they were held in the Ipswich Corn Exchange. Entries in the ’90s often exceeded 300 children.
In those days we had an effective Junior Chess organisation, as can be seen from the chart below. What we desperately need now is for someone to take up the challenge of organising and promoting chess for children within the county. Both Essex and Cambridgeshire, and to a lesser extent Norfolk, have strong arrangements, with coaching and other events.
It has been too long with no Junior Organiser for the county. Apart from the Bury Knights, Woodbridge School and a few state schools, there’s not a lot of chess being played by children in Suffolk. The Bury St Edmunds Junior Congress on 5 March has so far attracted more entrants from Cambridgeshire, than from Suffolk!
If anyone – a parent perhaps – is interested in promoting junior chess within the county, please have a chat with me. I did the job for ten years (1988 to 1997) and it was an amazing, rewarding experience.