Years of British Chess Magazine


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Years of Chess Informant

Magazine Features


All new look and content

Total makeover to make you feel proud to read your copy of BCM

Much more GM content

Many more top UK and international Grandmasters now write for BCM

More pages than before

64 pages means more games, more analysis, more comment, great photos, great value

Collaboration with Informator

We're now partnering with the world's renowned publisher Chess Informant, founders of ECO code

Inside BCM?

Original articles written by numerous Grandmasters and International Masters


A Decisive Encounter In The British Championship

GM Michael Adams won the British Championship for the 5th time at the 103rd British Chess Championship held in July-August 2016. Adams finished with the sensational score of 10/11. Having been the youngest ever British Champion at 17 years of age, this performance equalled his friend Julian Hodgson’s previous all time record from Plymouth 1992. Adams finished a full 1.5 points clear of David Howell in second place, and 2 points clear of Gawain Jones and Justin Tan in joint 3rd place. Michael analyses what is probably the decisive encounter of the whole tournament, his tough 77 move win against David Howell in round 7 with the Berlin Defence in which he coolly defended White’s attack and then exploited White’s weakened pawn structure. Adams is one of the best chess writers around, and you can read his signature column in every CHESS INFORMANT.


A Hat Trick For Carlsen At Bilbao Masters!

The super strong Bilbao Masters event held in July is featured in a detailed report by GM Bassem Amin. The Spanish city of Bilbao has a long tradition of hosting one of the strongest super-tournaments of the year, in which six elite grandmasters play a double-round all-play-all and score 3 points for a win and 1 point for a draw so as to encourage fighting chess. Won impressively by World Champion Magnus Carlsen, we feature his last game with the white pieces against Candidates winner Sergey Karjakin before their forthcoming world title match in November, as well as Carlsen’s first win at classical chess against Anish Giri which ensured him first prize with a round to spare. Carlsen's win against Karjakin could be particularly significant, giving him a psychological edge for the forthcoming world title match.


GM Nick Pert analyses in detail a further 4 key games from the British Championship - Adams’ win in round 9 (also as Black) against GM Gawain Jones, his own win against the new British Ladies Champion WGM Jovanka Houska (who scored an impressive 7/11), and wins by IM David Eggleston and IM Richard Palliser whose game against GM Tamas Fodor jr. was awarded the best game prize.
BCM’s youngest writer, Theo Slade, discusses his chess playing highs and lows and mixed results since his move to Florida last year. Learning Lessons in Philadelphia is Theo’s own attempt to analyse what was going wrong and how to put things right. Identifying three problem areas (opening play, time management and the crucial factor of low self-confidence), he tells us how he turned things around and won the recent Southern Open tournament and US$1500 first prize with a convincing last round win. Theo is a chess fighter, and now knows at first hand that persistence, dedication and resilience in the face of setbacks will eventually pay off.
Philidor´s last Sojourn in London is the third and final installment of Gordon Cadden’s fresh look at François-André Philidor’s long association with England in the fields of both chess and music. The 18th century Frenchman was described by the late Bent Larsen as “The greatest chess player of all times. With his conception of chess he was 70 years ahead of his time. Since then, no one has been ahead by more than 15 years.” By 1789 the French Revolution was brewing and about to increase in its intensity and ferocity, and subsequent events were to have a devastating effect on Philidor’s life. This article traces Philidor’s sad decline while living St James in London, and how in 1795 at the age of 69 he “sunk unto the grave without a groan” in poverty and ill health. To this day the sad demise of Philidor remains something of a stain on the reputations of his wealthy friends and chess patrons in England at the time. His memorable obituary in the Morning Post of 1 September 1795 is given in full.
It’s Only Tony is a special feature article on Tony Miles who was, without question, one of England’s best ever players. Miles showed great ability from an early age and was British under-14 Champion and under-21 Champion in 1968 and 1971 respectively. It’s exactly 40 years since Miles became England’s first over-the-board grandmaster and winner of the £5,000 reward put up by City of London tycoon Jim Slater, who provided a similar financial incentive (but of ten times that amount!) for Bobby Fischer to play Boris Spassky for the world title in 1972. In 1980, at the European Team Championship, Miles beat reigning World Champion Anatoly Karpov with Black using the extremely unorthodox opening 1. e4 a6!?, the St. George Defence. Miles beat Karpov again three years later in Bath in a game that was part of the BBC’s Master Game series. We publish a few entertaining encounters from Miles’ career, annotated by Tony himself, which are not included in the otherwise pretty comprehensive collection of his games and writings It’s Only Me (an anagram of his own name).
Our Endgame Studies specialist Ian Watson features the recent 2016 World Chess Solving Championship in Belgrade in which Poland retained their title as World Chess Solving Champions. Last year the UK came second but this year we were in fourth place behind Lithuania and Serbia. The UK team comprised John Nunn, Jonathan Mestel, Colin McNab and Michael McDowell. Our problem studies this month are all taken from the Belgrade events and are all new compositions not published until after the Belgrade competitions. The first three were used in the World Championship itself, and the fourth was used in the Open which takes place as a warm up event just before the Championship. Problem solved? Test your mettle with the very best!
In his regular Problem World feature, Chess Composition GM Christopher Jones presents four more positions requiring solutions which are both challenging and aesthetically pleasing. If you do not know what the “Zilahi” theme is, this article is a must.
Our regular feature Find the Way to Win includes 9 sharp positions of varying difficulty taken from play in tournaments in 2016 around the world. There is a particularly devastating finish by Alexei Shirov against Martin Burrows from the Helsingor event.
British News and Foreign News are covered as usual, including a 10-round event held in Iran in which our own Nigel Short top-scored for the World Stars GM team with a rating performance of 2790. One of Nigel’s crispest wins from this event is given. The July 2016 ECF grades have been published, showing that among the top 10 English players Matthew Sadler is well out in front. Adam Raoof provides a report about the DeMontford Bell Kings Place Chess Festival held in London on 9 July, 2016 – the event was won by Luke McShane and Justin Tan who tied for first place, and was co-sponsored by BCM. One of Luke’s games is given, a smooth win in round 1 against WIM Natasha Regan.

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I just wanted to write a short note having downloaded the January issue on the iPad app today. The new magazine is OUTSTANDING. I have not subscribed to BCM for at least 10 years now, but judging from the quality of this issue I will be a regular going forward. The mixture of (mostly) British writers, top class writing and analysis and outstanding design is wonderful — comparable in quality to New in Chess. Many thanks for bringing BCM back to life.


Modern look

The more modern look is certainly very appealing, and the writing remains of exquisite quality. You should certainly be very proud, as should everybody in the BCM and Chess Informant team! It truly feels that the BCM has moved to the 21st century with this update.


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About Us

British Chess Magazine — published continuously since 1881

British Chess Magazine - year 1923

Reinvigorated, refreshed, redesigned, relaunched. BCM is back!

Founded in 1881 by John Watkinson, from humble origins in Yorkshire, British Chess Magazine has long been regarded as British chess royalty.

Don’t just take our word for it — Queen Elizabeth II was pleased to have a chess problem dedicated to her in BCM on the occasion of her wedding in 1948, and we understand that BCM june even have been read by Queen Victoria (known to be a keen chess player). With our two longest serving monarchs, BCM readers are in great company!

Published continuously during the reigns of six British sovereigns, twenty world chess champions, twenty-five British prime ministers, and two world wars, BCM has featured the play of every world champion since 1881, from Wilhelm Steinitz through to current world champion Magnus Carlsen.

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