Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

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John Upham
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Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by John Upham » Tue Mar 19, 2019 2:16 pm

Whilst scanning scorebooks of mine from the 1970s and 1980s I found a game played in

The Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament

with Olive C. Chataway which was a Sicilian Scheveningen that I won with white.

Does this tournament still get played ?

Anyone know its history ?

I recall that Olive was friends with Anne Sunnucks and Elaine Pritchard.

Does anyone know anything about Olive Chataway ?

Was she related to Christopher Chataway ?
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Richard James
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Richard James » Tue Mar 19, 2019 3:06 pm

Olive Cecily Richards born Sanderstead, Croydon 31 August 1906
Professional cello player from a family of musicians. An online search of concert programmes from the 1930s comes up with many references. I believe she was the sister of Bernard (Roland) Richards (1913-1996), a very distinguished cellist.
She married Thomas Eagle Lovell Chataway (b 11 Oct 1903) in Harrow in Q4 1970: he sadly died less than a year later, in Q3 1971. Thomas was by that time a retired schoolteacher and the son of a clergyman from Stourbridge, Worcestershire.
Olive's death was registered in the London Borough of Brent in Q3 1986.

Richard James
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Richard James » Tue Mar 19, 2019 3:17 pm

Ralph Ladislas Barnett (1911-1976) lived in Hayes, Middx. He played chess for Middlesex and EMI (in the Middlesex League) between about 1930 and 1960. He was awarded an MBE in the 1967 Birthday Honours List. (Citation: Location Manager, Electric & Musical Industries Electronics Ltd.)

I'd imagine he left some money to Middlesex chess when he died, and they named a trophy in his honour. I'm sure someone will know exactly what the trophy was for.

I seem to recall there was a Middlesex Girls trophy named after Ralph and Doris Barnett at some point in the 1990s, and that the late Bruce Birchall was involved in organising this.

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Gerard Killoran
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Gerard Killoran » Tue Mar 19, 2019 5:04 pm

From the Birmingham Daily Post - Wednesday 15 September 1971

Birmingham Daily Post - Wednesday 15 September 1971 .png
Birmingham Daily Post - Wednesday 15 September 1971 .png (139.4 KiB) Viewed 888 times

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Tue Mar 19, 2019 11:10 pm

Ralph Barnett trophy was normally contested by counties surrounding London, but some other Leagues had teams in it, e.g. Civil Service, North Circular League, possibly London League at times. It was run as a jamboree event. I last played in it several years ago, no idea if it still happens. I seem to recall there were some sorts of grading restrictions, e.g. anybody in top 4 boards, remaining boards under 150/160? (can't remember). That may have been a recent innovation to try to stop horrible mismatches lower down.

John Upham
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by John Upham » Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:27 am

I am grateful to Jon D'Souza-Eva for the following two items :

https://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/0405/rdc.htm


and

http://coaching.chesspod.com/recorder/1998/art0827.html :D

especially as one of them mentions one of the best organisers I was privileged to know : Michael W. Wills (one of the nicest persons in chess).
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Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Wed Mar 20, 2019 12:30 pm

I played in that one. David Malcolm (Surrey) and I (either NCCL or Civil Service) travelled all the way from Redhill to Poplar and played each other on Board 4 (draw).

I agree about Mike, and David was a really nice guy as well.

Malcolm Clarke
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Malcolm Clarke » Sat May 04, 2019 8:47 am

I thought that Mike Wills was a major force in organising the Ralph Barnett and so it was quite a surprise when I heard that it had still been running several years after Mike retired from chess.

I in fact spoke to Mike Wills on Sunday and hope to see him when I visit Folkestone in July.

Gordon Cadden
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Gordon Cadden » Mon May 06, 2019 3:07 pm

Richard James wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 3:17 pm
Ralph Ladislas Barnett (1911-1976) lived in Hayes, Middx. He played chess for Middlesex and EMI (in the Middlesex League) between about 1930 and 1960. He was awarded an MBE in the 1967 Birthday Honours List. (Citation: Location Manager, Electric & Musical Industries Electronics Ltd.)

I'd imagine he left some money to Middlesex chess when he died, and they named a trophy in his honour. I'm sure someone will know exactly what the trophy was for.

I seem to recall there was a Middlesex Girls trophy named after Ralph and Doris Barnett at some point in the 1990s, and that the late Bruce Birchall was involved in organising this.
Bruce Birchill had a particular interest in promoting Girls Tournaments. He felt that they were not being supported in Middlesex Chess. Know that he did organise Tournaments for Girls.

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Ralph L. Barnett Memorial Tournament & Olive Chataway

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Mon May 06, 2019 7:03 pm

"Bruce Birchill had a particular interest in promoting Girls Tournaments. He felt that they were not being supported in Middlesex Chess. Know that he did organise Tournaments for Girls."

Middlesex in return thought he was not supporting Middlesex! We have discussed the all-female County team elsewhere.

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