St John’s Junior Chess Club
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This club was set up specifically to encourage young players in the Walsall Wood area learn to play the game and develop their skills. The club closed in 2007.
The club started with just 9 members and rapidly grew to over 30, with some as young as 4.
The players were coached by Ray Dolan and their skills independently assessed. Once they met a required standard each member was awarded a certificate. As those skills continued to develop, players were encouraged to enter regional and national junior tournaments.
The club was founded on 20 April 2004 and, because it had been funded entirely by the Church and the generosity of local parishoners, was believed to be unique. Their generosity meant there was no membership fee.
This photograph (taken in early 2005) shows some of the club’s members.
Ray Dolan can be seen top right.