Starting off with some material from another thread that went off-topic:
Christopher Kreuzer wrote:Going back a few more years than that, I see that the 1912 British Chess Championships were held in "Richmond". Was that Richmond, Surrey (not Richmond, Yorkshire)? I'd never realised that. There isn't any particular reason why it would be recorded in the history of local chess clubs in the area including the one I play for (Richmond and Twickenham Chess Club), and I'm not sure the history of any of the local clubs go back that far (well, Harrow was founded before 1912), but I'd be interested in more details of the venue in 1912 if anyone knows that.
Richard James wrote:Richmond Surrey, but I don't know where. Will try to find out. There are references to Richmond (Surrey) Chess Club back in the mid 19th century but not sure how long the current club has been in existence. Richmond & Twickenham Chess Club was formed by the merger of Richmond Chess Club & Twickenham Chess Club in about 1958. Tim Harding and Brian Denman have given me some information on this & they will know more than me.
A quick look in the Times Archives only confirms that it was "Richmond on Thames" and that the weather was very much the same as it was to be 100 years later.
Clive Blackburn wrote:There is an interesting game here from the 1912 British Championships (see 5608. Wahltuch v Griffith)
Richard Griffith, the eventual winner of the championship, was winning comfortably but then allowed his opponent to force stalemate.
Part of the game score is shown, as published in the BCM at the time.
Christopher Kreuzer wrote:Thanks Clive and Richard. I may dig around and see if I can find anything as well. What I was wondering was whether it would have been likely to have been held in a grand venue such as the Star and Garter Hotel, though thinking about it, probably not. What I'm looking for is an idea of the number of players participating, which would give an idea of the size of venue that might have been used at the time (or indeed the type of venue used for any of the major chess tournaments held in the UK in the last decades of the 19th-century and pre-WWI, i.e. the late Victorian and Edwardian period).
For instance, the 1899 tournament, according to Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_189 ... tournament
was played "in St. Stephenâ€™s Hall with a time limit of fifteen moves in one hour. Participants were entertained by the City of London chess club at Crystal Palace and the Star and Garter Hotel in Richmond. A banquet took place in the International Hall of the CafÃ© Monico on 29 June".
I have a vague memory that this is the St Stephen's Hall in the Palace of Westminster, but looking things up it seems that is wishful thinking:
"The writer was unimpressed by the playing conditions: â€˜I think it would have been difficult to find premises more shabby, more grubby and more unhealthy than St Stephenâ€™s Hall"
Look at the picture, you can see St Stephen's Hall at lower right, part of or attached to the Royal Aquarium building. It sounds like it was no Simpsons in the Strand. The banquets would have been more pleasant.