SHEFFIELD Chess History

 

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Woodhouse Cup (second)

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The main contribution to chess of Alderman Edwin Woodhouse JP was that in 1885 he presented to the West Yorkshire Chess Association a large solid-silver cup for the new competition between chess teams representing the towns of Yorkshire’s West Riding, the Edwin Woodhouse Challenge Cup.  After the first season it was thrown open to all Yorkshire chess clubs.  The trophy was won outright by Leeds in 1913, so the alderman donated a second, significantly less ornate solid-silver cup.  This second cup was in turn won outright by Sheffield in 1926, whereupon Leeds re-donated the original cup to the Yorkshire Chess Association, leaving the second cup still in the possession of the Sheffield & District Chess Association.

 

(Click here for a photograph of the trophy.)

 

First Re-Incarnation of the Second Woodhouse Cup

 

This second Woodhouse Cup was put into service as a trophy contested annually between teams, of up to 100 or so players per side, representing the Sheffield & District Chess Association (“The Association”) and the Sheffield & District Works Sports Association Chess Section (The Works”).

 

This was the “Annual Match” which former S&DCA president F. J. (“Jack”) Baxter famously regarded as the most important event of the season.  Historically the match would be played over a hundred or so boards.  Often one side would be short of players on the day, and a handful of players from one team would “guest” for the other.  For many players who played in both leagues there was the question of which team they would play for.

 

A logistical administrative hazard was a tendency for the match to be fixed for the week when any replay necessitated by a tie in the final of the FA Cup would be played.  An FA Cup final replay seriously reduced the number of players turning out for the Annual Match.

 

Quite when the second Woodhouse Cup was presented in this context is unclear, but at some stage a plinth was added to the original trophy, on which were engraved details of winners.  The plinth records results year-by-year only from 1968 onwards, the inscription being as follows:

 

ANNUAL CHESS MATCH

 

SHEFFIELD ASSN.

 

S & D W S A

1925-66 26 WINS

1 TIE

4 WINS

1968

1979

1967

1972

 

1969

1973

 

1970

1974

 

1971

1975

 

1989

1976

 

1990

1977

 

 

1978

 

 

1980

 

 

1981

 

 

1982

 

 

1983

 

 

1984

 

 

1985

 

 

1986

 

 

1987

 

 

1991

 

 

 

1988 appears not to be mentioned.  Thus there were recorded 43 Association wins, 2 draws, and 10 Works wins.

 

This annual contest eventually ceased for one reason or another, and in time the “Works” league ceased to be in 2008, and the trophy was retired to an S&DCA vice-presidents wardrobe.

 

Second Re-Incarnation of the Second Woodhouse Cup

 

An informal summer league was tried among some S&DCA clubs in the 1990s, but it faded.  Then, for 2009-2010, a summer league was introduced, becoming a formal Association competition, and a second division was introduced for 2010-11.  It was decided to allocate the dust-gathering second Woodhouse Cup to the summer league division 1.  Winners of the Summer League division 1, to date, have been as follows:

 

2000

Rotherham

2011

Worksop A

2012

Chesterfield A

2013

Chesterfield B

 

 

Created

05/09/2013

Copyright © 2013 Stephen John Mann

Last Updated

05/09/2013