The aim of the Bacchus League is to offer graded league condition matches for players who do not normally get the opportunity to play in league matches, or are new to more competitive chess, in a friendly and welcoming environment.
The league was formed following a small circle of chess friends exchanging ideas whilst enjoying an evening glass or two of Merlot. But calling it the “Merlot League” seemed to exclude those with other preferences for an evening nightcap. So Bacchus, the God of Wine, was suggested. This reflects the friendly, though not necessarily alcoholic at all, nature of the league.
In the 2019/20 season, 8 teams from 5 clubs took part. In 2021/22, as chess cautiously restarted after the COVID inflicted break, there were 4 teams. In 2022/23 3 teams too part. It is expected that there will be at least 4 teams in 2023/24.