The new season and COVID-19

Monday 27 July, 2020

At our AGM on 23rd July, we discussed at length what the COVID-19 situation means for our 2020/21 season.

We do not believe it is practicable for us to resume over-the-board events at the present time, given the “social distancing” measures which would be required under current government guidance. We therefore intend to start the season “online-only”.

Even before the new season starts, we intend to run an online replacement for the 2020 Club Championship. Details of this will be announced in due course.

The Committee will consider resuming over-the-board events when we are satisfied that some or all of the following conditions are met:

  • recreational gatherings are unrestricted (i.e. legal, in line with government guidelines, and with no requirement for social distancing that would significantly hamper the event)
  • the Middlesex League resumes over-the-board competition in at least one division
  • premises are available

In taking decisions on resumption of in-person events, we shall be guided by the latest advice of HM Government and the English Chess Federation.

Because of these very uncertain circumstances, we have decided to reduce our membership fees for 2020/21. Full details may be found here.

We hope members will take advantage of the substantially reduced early-renewal fee, participate in our online events, and keep the club going until we can “get back to the board”!

If any 2019/20 members do not wish to renew their membership, the Treasurer will consider any refund requests made by the end of October 2020, which he will normally evaluate at one third of the subscription paid for 2019/20, rounded to the nearest £5, but only if the club’s finances permit. Requests submitted after October will not be considered.

The payment date will be at the Treasurer’s discretion, but not later than 31 March 2021 if the club’s finances permit. If you prefer to receive a higher amount sooner, not to mention the benefits of our online events plus over-the-board events when they resume, we hope you will pay and renew in October.

We thank you all for your support, and hope you and your families and friends are safe and well in these difficult times.