Gordon Pollard

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John Townsend
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Gordon Pollard

Post by John Townsend » Mon Jun 19, 2023 3:09 pm

I can vaguely remember Gordon Pollard of Wallingford. My mind's eye places him about 1969 in the clubroom of Reading Chess Club, which in those days was a room adjoining St. Mary's church, next to the Butts. Perhaps the cirumstances were that he was playing for a visiting team. Or my mind's eye may be wrong and it was at a county match. I recall him as a player, roughly, of the 150s.

Unfortunately, I did not get to know him beyond exchanging a few words. His column in the Abingdon Herald was highly praised by Edward Winter in C.N. 107:

"His chess column in the Abingdon Herald is truly outstanding, and the newspaper itself is to be congratulated on recognizing excellence and devoting to chess a very substantial amount of space."

His column dated 17 August 1978 is reproduced in full at

https://www.chesshistory.com/winter/extra/jottings.html

which is a compliment indeed.

Jon D'Souza-Eva
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by Jon D'Souza-Eva » Mon Jun 19, 2023 3:24 pm

Could this be him?
Thomas Gordon Pollard
Birth: 4 March 1908 (*)
Death: Jul 1997 Wallingford, Oxfordshire, England

(*) Birth appears to have been registered in Wareham in Q2 1908.

John Townsend
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by John Townsend » Mon Jun 19, 2023 3:30 pm

Ah, yes, Jon. I'm sure that's the ticket. That would make him about 61 when I met him, which seems about right, and his first initial was thought to be T, and Wallingford is also right.

John Townsend
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by John Townsend » Mon Jun 19, 2023 3:57 pm

I see that John Saunders' Britbase has him winning a minor tournament at Hastings in 1933/4, winning eight games of nine.

See here: [url]https://www.saund.co.uk/britbase/pgn/19 ... iewer.html[/url]

He is described as being of Yeovil then.

He seems to have been interested in problems too.

Graham Borrowdale
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by Graham Borrowdale » Mon Jun 19, 2023 5:30 pm

I can’t really add anything, except that I remember him, although I never played him. Berkshire used to play county matches in a village close to Wallingford, who also had a team in the Berks League, and I remember he was generally there, one of those club stalwarts. That would have been 1976-1980 time. A tall man with a long beard, if I remember, and, yes, around 150 playing strength.

John Townsend
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by John Townsend » Tue Jun 20, 2023 12:26 pm

Thank you, Graham. I couldn't find mention of Pollard playing for Berkshire, at least not in the score-cards I have looked at. Of course, Wallingford is in Oxfordshire, so did he play for them? I have also been puzzling over the "village close to Wallingford" where Berkshire played county matches. Where was it? (During the period you mentioned, I didn't play for Berks. very often).

Jon D'Souza-Eva
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by Jon D'Souza-Eva » Tue Jun 20, 2023 12:38 pm

A google search for "pollard site:sccu-chess.com" finds quite a few instances where Pollard played for Berkshire in the 1950s to 1970s. No clue about where Berkshire played their home matches though.

Graham Alcock
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by Graham Alcock » Tue Jun 20, 2023 12:47 pm

Wallingford was in Berkshire until the county boundaries were changed.
As someone who grew up in Abingdon I can remember these chess columns.

John Townsend
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by John Townsend » Tue Jun 20, 2023 12:54 pm

Yes, presumably, Wallingford was in Berkshire until 1974. He would have been unlikely to switch his allegiance.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Jun 20, 2023 1:14 pm

John Townsend wrote:
Tue Jun 20, 2023 12:26 pm
I have also been puzzling over the "village close to Wallingford" where Berkshire played county matches. Where was it?

I was wondering that as well. I probably played against Berkshire 1 every year from 1972 onwards, often in Reading when Bucks were away. But Berks had four teams for a while in the 1970s. The SCCU bulletins of that era don't always give venues.

GrahamStuart
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by GrahamStuart » Tue Jun 20, 2023 1:28 pm

From the records I have with regards to his games against Hampshire he first played for Somerset in 1932 on board 13 (I don't think board 2 was a relation, although the writing is not the easiest to read Capt PD Bolland). He was still playing for Somerset in 1938 (board eight). He played (at least) four games in total for Somerset against Hampshire with three draws and a loss.

He played at least another 3 games against Hampshire 2 in 1970 and 1 in 1975 for Berkshire. The first two were for the A team (bd 20 (grade 158) and 13) and the last for the B team (bd 6). He did better for Berkshire with 2 wins and a draw.
Attachments
Hampshire - Somerset 3rd Dec 1932.jpg
Hampshire - Somerset 3rd Dec 1932.jpg (174.22 KiB) Viewed 523 times

Graham Borrowdale
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by Graham Borrowdale » Tue Jun 20, 2023 1:54 pm

You are welcome, John.
The village was Brightwell-cum-Sotwell, I remember my father driving me there on several Saturday afternoons, probably around 1977-78. I played for Berks 1st and 2nd teams, plus a junior only team, so it could have been either. Nigel Dennis would probably remember. I might be remembering Gordon from a club match, but I can’t find any games I played against Wallingford, so that might be wrong.
Sorry can’t be more help, I do have a reasonable memory of Berks chess from that era, if it helps.

John Townsend
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by John Townsend » Tue Jun 20, 2023 3:41 pm

Pollard, writing to Edward Winter in 1982, gave a small story about E.S. Tinsley.

See C.N. 106 in https://www.chesshistory.com/winter/extra/tinsley.html

Phil Neatherway
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by Phil Neatherway » Wed Jun 21, 2023 9:34 am

Brightwell-cum-Sotwell is also the location of Bojo's new mansion.

John Townsend
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Re: Gordon Pollard

Post by John Townsend » Wed Jun 21, 2023 9:50 am

I didn't find any senior county matches recorded as played at Brightwell-cum-Sotwell when I looked at the SCCU bulletins for 1977-1978, but I didn't look at junior matches.

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