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Last day to enter online2024-04-10
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Saturday 13th & Sunday 14th April

St Columba's College, King Harry Lane, St Albans AL3 4AW

Trophy awarded to Best Herts Player in each section

5-Round Swiss tournament in 5 sections
Games are submitted for ECF rating only (It is not FIDE rated)
Eligibility to play in a rating-limited section is based on ECF 1st March rating list

Tournament pairings and results are available through these links:
Open  •  Challengers 2050  •  Major 1900  •  Intermediate 1750  •  Minor 1600

Free Parking for over 200 cars
Bookshop by Chess & Bridge (
Analysis Room

Breakfast: 9.00 am until 11.00 am.
Hot Food: 12.00 noon until 4.00 pm.
Hot & Cold Drinks, Sandwiches & Snacks are available throughout the day.
Our caterer has no facility to handle cash. Payment is by CARD only.

Chief Organiser: Ray Claret

Chief Arbiter: Adrian Elwin

Control Team: Jeremy Fraser-Mitchell (lead), Ian Cross, Paul Lawrence, Stuart James

Contact: Lubo Botev
Telephone 07746 317979 (mobile), or email

St Albans Congress Website | Safeguarding | Postal Entry Form

Prizes (Total prize fund over £3500)

First Prize£320£320£320£320£320
Second Prize£160£160£160£160£160
Third Prize£80£80£80£80£80
Rating 1£80 (U2150)£80 (U1950)£80 (U1800)£80 (U1650)£80 (U1500)
Rating 2£80n/an/an/a£80 (U1400)
Rating 3£80n/an/an/a£80 (U1300)
Veteran (65 or over at 1/1/24) £80 (Best score by eligible player in Congress)
Junior (Under 14 at 1/1/24) £80 (Best score by eligible player in Congress)

Payment of Prizes

There will be no formal Prizegiving. A list of all Prize Winners will be available on the Congress website shortly after the event.

Prizes will be sent within 7 days by:
    (i) cheque posted to the player's home address, or
    (ii) PayPal, although a PayPal transaction fee (2.9% + £0.30) will be deducted from any payment.


ECF rating list (March 2024) will apply.

Except in the OPEN, no ungraded player may win more than a maximum of £60. However, to be eligible for this prize money they must have provided written evidence of their playing strength, before Sunday 7th April 2024.

No Entries (Online or Postal) will be accepted after Thursday 11 April at 9.00pm.

Entry Fees & Donations

Standard entry fee (for ECF members at Silver or higher level: £35.

For Bronze-level ECF members or non-ECF members, there is a rating surcharge of £9.

There is a £5 discount from the standard entry fee for Juniors (Under 18 on 1 January 2024).

Conditions of Entry

Players entering the tournament agree thereby to abide by the Competition Rules and the decisions of the controllers.
Players agree to their rating information and results being published on the ECF and St Albans Congress websites and the website.

The organisers reserve the right to refuse entries, transfer entries, and to revise prize money, according to circumstances.

Round Start Times

Round 1Saturday10.00am
Round 2Saturday2.30pm
Round 3Saturday6.30pm
Round 4Sunday10.00am
Round 5Sunday2.30pm

A ½ point bye may be requested in advance, except in round 5.

If your opponent has not arrived within 30 minutes of the start of a round they will be defaulted and you should report to the Controller’s desk for repairing.

Players wishing to withdraw or change a ½ point bye request should advise the Control Desk as soon as possible ahead of pairings being made for the next round.

Rate of Play

All moves in 90 minutes, plus 10 seconds per move increment from move 1.


In the event of a dispute during their game, a player should stop the clock and summon an arbiter.

The Chief Arbiter's decision in all matters is final.

Electronic Devices

A player must not use any electronic device during a game without the controller’s explicit permission. Although players may keep such devices with them at the venue, they must be fully switched off (not merely muted) in the playing area during playing sessions.

Electronic devices must not be carried on the person during a game but may, for example, be kept in a bag on the floor. These rules apply at all times during playing sessions.  In particular, a player whose mobile phone sounds during a game will forfeit the game.

Data Protection

Personal data is held solely for the purposes of the St Albans Congress: for the administration of the event; to report results to the ECF for rating purposes; to publish rating information, results and games to the St Albans Congress and websites; and to inform you of our future chess events.

We occasionally post photos of the tournament on the Congress website; should you have any concerns regarding the use of photos, please, contact the organisers.