Bulletin No.83 – Au revoir to bulletins

18 Months of Bulletins

As OTB chess has resumed, this is the last of our Saturday Bulletins which we started when the COVID lockdown began over eighteen months ago. If you include the Dorset Local Chats and those Bulletins which have been split into several parts then there have been over 100 Bulletins!

We tried to bring you quite a range of bulletins but the ones that proved to be most popular were articles including:

  • Openings such as The Stunning Stafford Gambit and the 7 Deadly Sinful Traps for Black.
  • Unusual, quirky bulletins, particularly The Psychological Traits of an Ideal Chess Player.
  • The history of individual chess clubs.
  • The history on local ‘over the board’ Tournaments, particularly within the Bournemouth and Dorset area.
  • Local current online tournaments during the pandemic.
  • Anything else with local games, and especially the ‘Countdown to Christmas’ which, whilst technically wasn’t a bulletin, was one of our best local sellers across the 24 Advent Calendar games!

The bulletins have been the backbone of the Dorset Chess website content over the past year and have helped with website average over 50 viewings per day, excluding its home page.

Looking at the viewing figures it seems the types of bulletins you have enjoyed the most are:

  • Local chess news, history, tournaments & games in preference to national chess news, history, tournaments & games. This includes both over the board and online events.
  • Openings in preference to endgames
  • Quirky bulletins.

Bulletin ‘Oscars’

So what were the most popular bulletins in each category? With a degree of judgement for the earlier bulletins for which we do not have solid stats, the winners were…

Most Popular Opening Bulletin… Bulletin No.45 – The Stunning Stafford Gambit which notched up over 1,200 hits courtesy of not just a local but a national and international following.

Honourable mentions… Bulletin No.38 – 7 Deadly Sinful Traps for Black in less than 10 moves! with 162 hits and Bulletin No.26 – Animal Openings Part 1: The Mammals with 127 hits.

Most Popular Endgame Bulletin… Bulletin No.74 – Endgame Corner: Rook Ending Crash Course with 52 hits.

Dorcjester Chess Jamboreee 2007Most Popular Club History Bulletin… Based upon feedback received, a joint award to Bulletin No.10 – Poole Chess Club – the club of mergers and acquisitions! (about three quarters of the way down the page) and Dorset Local Chat No.5 – Dorchester, a club with a rich history, (also about three quarters of the way down the page).

Most Popular Local OTB Tournament Bulletin… A joint award to Bulletin No.21 – History of the Dorset Individual Chess Championship which got 85 hits and Dorset Local Chat No.10 – The Dorset Rapidplay which from feedback we know was extremely popular.

 Honourable Mention… Bulletin No.32 – The British Chess Championships in 2016 – Part 2 which got 77 hits.

Most Popular Non-Local Tournament Bulletin… Bulletin No.36 – The 1993 World Chess Championship Revisited – Part 2 with 130 hits.

Honourable Mentions… Bulletin No.35 – Allan Pleasants – Dorset’s Own Welsh Chess Champion! with 61 hits and Bulletin No.33 – Mike Waddington Talks Titles which covered Mike at the Hastings Congress and got 56 hits.

Most Popular Local Online Event Bulletin… Bulletin No.54 – Dorset Rapidplay Bloomers, More Games & Trivia Quiz! with 99 hits

Honourable Mentions… Bulletin No.53 – Rapidplay Games with 94 hits and
Bulletin No.37 – Ringwood Online Lockdown Tournaments which got 77 hits.

Most Popular Local Games Bulletin… Countdown to Christmas which, whilst not strictly a bulletin, had many local contributors and was hugely popular, achieving 1188 hits across the 24 games.

Honourable Mention… Bulletin No.42 – More Local Games Fireworks! which followed on from the advent calendar and was published on Boxing Day 2020, gaining 75 hits.

Most Popular Quiz… Bulletin No.41 – Christmas Puzzles and Quiz Special with 62 hits.

Most Popular Quirky Bulletin… Bulletin No.57 – The Psychological Traits of an Ideal Chess Player! with 235 hits and, like the Stafford Gambit bulletin, an international following.

Diagram by Jake Beech

Most Popular Everything Else Bulletin… Bulletin No.63 – The Confessions of a 4NCL Captain at 81 hits.

Honourable Mention… Bulletin No.27 – Purbeck Chess Club Returns to Outdoor ‘over the board’ Chess at 64 hits, from August 2020 when we naively thought we might be playing face-to-face chess like normal in a few more weeks!

Thank You To All Contributors

We hope you have enjoyed reading the bulletins as much as we have enjoyed producing them. We would like to say thank you to everyone who has contributed material, from individual games to historical information, with extra thanks to Mike Jay, Steve Peirson, Ian Clark, Martin Clancy, Mike Waddington, Keith Gregory, Tony Buckfield, John Jenkins, Barry Jolly, Allan Pleasants, Derek Mount, Brian Beard, Alan Dommett & Richard Ursell who helped to write whole bulletins.

Whilst Bulletins per se are stopping, we are still planning plenty of content:

  • The Weekly Dorset Newsletters will continue.
  • The puzzles will continue twice weekly.
  • A summary on all current local chess news and results on a weekly basis on the Dorset Chess Website.
  • The occasional special feature during the year and maybe the odd quiz or two.

So we will still welcome any interesting material you may have, be it news, photos, games or puzzles. Please keep it coming!

Martin Simons & Peter Anderson – 16th October 2021

From Bulletin No.27, the photo that seems to sum up the year perfectly!

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