Chess News

ChessFest 2022 – the biggest UK chess festival

ChessFest returns to Trafalgar Square this July, bigger and better than before. The UK’s largest one-day chess event is aimed at anyone who loves or wants to learn chess, and is completely free of charge. Taking place at London’s iconic Trafalgar Square this year’s event marks the 50th anniversary of the 1972 World Chess Championship match between the American, Bobby Fischer and the Soviet, Boris Spassky. Once again there will be a living chess set – with 32 professional actors taking on the role of the chess pieces. Come and watch as they re-enact Garry Kasparov’s win over his silicon nemesis, Deep Blue (related: Throwback to 1997 – Deep Blue defeats Kasparov). The actors will also perform game 3 from the 1972 World Chess Championship, Fischer’s first win of the match, with commentary of both games from a top UK Grandmaster!

ChessFest 2022 events

  • Free chess lessons for children and adults from professional chess teachers and top UK players
  • 10 giant chess sets for people to play on
  • Living chess games performed by professional actors based on Garry Kasparov – Deep Blue (Game 1, 1997) and game 3 of the 1972 World Chess Championship between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky
  • 100s of chess tables for children and chess fans to play with each other
  • Challenge a Grandmaster at speed chess
  • Blindfold Chess exhibition
  • A truly giant screen (12 x 7m) broadcasting all the action from the square, as well as online games between players in London and our sister event in Liverpool
Volunteer at ChessFest

Chess in Schools and Communities are looking for volunteers to assist at ChessFest. Tasks include: Setting up in the square and packing up. Setting up chess sets, supervising play on the giant chess sets, matching members of the public to play, and even playing a few games against members of the public! Volunteers must be aged over 18. ChessFest offers travel expenses for those within the M25, lunch and refreshments, as well as a staff ChessFest t-shirt. If you would like to find out more, please contact the team via the contact page or call 020 7935 3445 (office hours only).

About CSS

Chess in Schools and Communities (CSC) is a UK charity whose mission is to improve children’s educational outcomes and social development by introducing them to the game of chess. Founded in 2009, CSC now runs over 1,000 projects across the UK in schools, libraries, and prisons and a world-class tournament, the London Chess Classic, each December. Chess is a low-cost, high-impact educational intervention. It knows no boundaries of age, gender, faith, ethnicity or disability, and can be played anywhere at any time. The game fosters intellectual and emotional skills crucial to a child’s wider development; CSC teaches chess in disadvantaged communities to give every child the chance to realise their full potential and has expanded its program to include libraries and prisons.

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