Frank Winter : can you help?

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John Upham
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Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by John Upham » Mon Nov 23, 2020 6:18 pm

A school chess club colleague of mine (Cyril John Winter) passed away in August 2020 aged 83.

He was one of ten (?) children of Frank Winter. Cyril's adopted sister told me that Frank Winter was a reasonable player.

I'm aware of the Frank Winter Trophy which is awarded for the Open section of the Surrey Congress.

Frank may have been a member of Wimbledon chess club many years ago.

Can you shed any light on who Frank Winter was and his chess history?

Mike Gunn tells me that much of Surrey's historical paper records moved to the west country and the persons wife would not allow Surrey officials to retrieve them. They were not digitised before this.
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Richard James
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Richard James » Mon Nov 23, 2020 6:27 pm

I knew Frank Winter very well, as I'm sure several other forum members did. I'll see what I can find out.

Nick Grey
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Nick Grey » Mon Nov 23, 2020 10:00 pm

John phone Martin Cath who started the Surrey Congress with Bill and Fred. Martin is Curator. He has a good memory of Surrey historical records.

John Upham
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by John Upham » Mon Nov 23, 2020 11:15 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 10:00 pm
John phone Martin Cath who started the Surrey Congress with Bill and Fred. Martin is Curator. He has a good memory of Surrey historical records.
Thanks Nick. Yes, Mike Gunn suggested to contact Martin Cath also. Do you have an email address?
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Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Mon Nov 23, 2020 11:37 pm

"Thanks Nick. Yes, Mike Gunn suggested to contact Martin Cath also. Do you have an email address?"

I doubt he has one...

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Tue Nov 24, 2020 12:19 pm

I do recall a couple of incidents from Surrey tournaments he controlled in the early 70s probably. The time limit was 48 moves in 2 hours, followed by adjudication. Not everyone was happy with that, and after a long rambling opening speech, he told the eager participants (who were sitting waiting to begin Round 1) about the adjudication. A player loudly asked who would be doing the adjudications. For some reason, FW did not know, and burbled about, "Oh, we're getting someone down." I fairly quietly responded, "You're getting us all down." He didn't hear, but he did hear the laughter from nearby players and looked suspiciously in our direction. (One adjudicator was Leonard Barden, and I think Frank Parr did some as well?)

Either that tournament or another in the series, after about 3 hours 55 minutes of the session, a crowd gathered round a board where moves were being made at a breakneck pace, FW determinedly barged through the crowd and grabbed the clock and shouted, "NO 5 MINUTE CHESS IN THE PLAYING HALL!!" It was pointed out that it was the tournament game that was still in progress, so he subsided a bit, although both players were disturbed and unamused by the amateurish interruption.

But he cheerfully gave up his time to run the events, even if sometimes he showed how not to run them!

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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by John Upham » Tue Nov 24, 2020 2:58 pm

Am I correct in thinking that the Surrey Championship trophy became the trophy for the Open section at the Surrey Congress?

Do we know who decided to name it the Frank Winter Trophy?

I believe Richard Bates is the current holder of this trophy and perhaps could inspect it on my behalf?
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:31 pm

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 12:19 pm
I do recall a couple of incidents from Surrey tournaments he controlled in the early 70s probably.
Did he run the big Easter Congresses at the Hammersmith Town Hall as well?

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Tue Nov 24, 2020 5:28 pm

"Did he run the big Easter Congresses at the Hammersmith Town Hall as well?"

That was the fore-runner of the Surrey events (although the latter started as summer weekenders I think, maybe in New Malden). I think he probably did run the Hammersmith ones.

Not FW, but a colleague of his at Hammersmith... A friend of mine decided to play 1.Nc3, and as he had no opponent went for a walk, came back and was puzzled to find the pieces reset and his clock going. So he reset the clock to the correct time, and played 1.Nc3 again and went for a walk. When he returned, same thing... So he reset the clock, played 1.Nc3 and stayed nearby. One of the controllers came past, sighed angrily, and retracted 1.Nc3, and changed the clock setting again. My friend hailed him and asked what he thought he was doing. Controller angrily said someone was mucking about. "Yes, you! 1.Nc3 is my first move!" Controller glared at him and stomped off.

Colin Patterson
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Colin Patterson » Thu Nov 26, 2020 1:14 pm

Reminds me of a friend of mine who would regularly play 1.a3 if his opponent hadn't turned up for the start of play.

He would cunningly set the pawn only half onto the a3 square, leave the remaining pieces in a messy arrangement, start the clock, push his chair in and walk away.

Arriving late, many an unsuspecting opponent would glance at the board from afar, breathe a sigh of relief and take an eternity to hang up their coat, use the bathroom, and go fetch a coffee, assuming that it was White's clock that was ticking down.

So sneaky tricks on the board can begin as early as move one! Always check the clock!!

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Frank Winter : can you help?

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Thu Nov 26, 2020 1:28 pm

"So sneaky tricks on the board can begin as early as move one! Always check the clock!!"

I recall a London League match, where there was some sort of problem with London Transport or traffic or both, so despite leaving plenty of time, I got to the board about 10 minutes before default time. I sprinted in, saw I had black, shook hands, apologized to my opponent, played a move and tried to get my breath back and find a pen. The opponent leaned over and said, "Don't worry I only just got here!" Sure enough, I only had used only one minute... I think we got our breath back and agreed a draw fairly early.

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