Chess Mail logo Friend of ICCF award  
Editor: Dr Tim Harding
  Dr. Tim Harding   J. H. Blackburne     Paul Morphy   Correspondence Chess history book   Captain W. D. Evans

What's New Here


24 (previously 17 & 21) June: We updated our Seniors news and calendar pages, and our preview of the World Senior Teams in Krakow. Also Irish news was updated.

10 (previously 7) June: Updates of our introduction to Seniors chess tournaments, our Seniors news and calendar pages, and our preview of the World Senior Teams in Krakow. Also Irish news was updated.

4 (previously 1st) June: Our Irish news page and many of our Seniors pages, including news and the calendar, have been updated. FIDE has announced dates and venues for its 2025 World Senior Championships.

28 (previously 24, 25 & 26) May: FIDE has at last announced details of the 2024 World individual senior championships. Our Seniors news page includes a reply we received from the organisers about travel arrangements to the venue. We also highlight the English Seniors championships which ended today.

28 (previously 24 & 25) May: Our Seniors calendar is updated again, as is our Seniors introduction page.

22 May: Details of the October tournament at Spitz in Austria are now added to the Seniors calendar. In Seniors news we have an update on entries for the English Seniors which start on Friday.

21 May (updated 28 May): Preview page for the World Senior Team Championships; entry lists have just been posted.

21 May: Since our return home, we have updated the Seniors calendar two or three times. Today we update the Seniors introduction page, our Seniors news page and Irish news.

16 (previously 15) May: We have posted a final report on the final round of the European Seniors Teams Championships.

14 May: Our Euro Seniors Teams report (updated tonight after round 8) is now supplemented by a round-by-round summary on a separate page. The main Seniors news page is also updated.

13 May: Our Euro Seniors Teams page now reports on round 7 and the pairings for round 8 as the fight for the podium positions clarifies. England are now favourites to win both the 50+ and 65+.

12 May: The main Seniors news page and Seniors calendar were brought up to date earlier in the day and our page on the Euro Seniors Teams now includes coverage of round 6.

12 May: The Irish news page is also updated now. The last round of the Leinster leagues was played today.

We regret that some visitors may have experienced problems with the site over the weekend, due to an error at our hosting company, but we believe all should be OK again. If you find any missing links or images please inform us.

11 (previously 7 & 8 & 9) May: We have a special page to report on the European Seniors Team Championship in Terme Catez, Slovenia. Five of the nine rounds have now been played.

7 May: Other Seniors news may be found on the usual news page and the Seniors calendar is also updated.

7 May: Our Irish news page is also updated with the results of last weekend's Malahide tournament.

2 May: There were several updates today to our Seniors news, our Seniors calendar and Seniors introduction page. A busy season of events for the over 50s is now under way.

2 May: Our Irish news page reports on the National Club Championships, held last weekend, and airs concerns about the serious backlog with the Irish rating system.

26 (previously 2, 9, 15 & 19) April: Yet again we have updated Seniors news, our Seniors calendar and Irish news.

23 (previously 20) March: Our Seniors news and Seniors calendar were updated again today.

15 (previously 5 and 8) March: Again we have updated Seniors news, the Seniors calendar and Irish news.

8 March: The Seniors introduction page was updated.

3 March: Version 2 of our UltraCorr2024 database has just been released, with more than 20,000 new games and many corrections. This will be the final version of the year. Purchasers of the original version have been emailed the new passwords.

19 February: John Elburg's review of our UltraCorr2024 database is now online.

17 February: Small changes to the Seniors calendar and website home page.

14 February: At last we are able to bring you major updates to our Seniors news and calendar pages, while the Seniors introduction page is also revised.

13 February: Our website was switched to SSL security today. You should no longer have a "not secure" warning in your browser.

13 February: Irish news is updated, as are Seniors news and calendar. Bids closed on 1 February for the 2025 FIDE World Senior championships and there is one bid each for the team and individual events.

31 January: RIP Chess24 which closes down today. For many years this was the best site for watching online chess tournaments, often with great commentary. It fell into the clutches of the Play Magnus Group, which in turn was taken over by the unlovable Chess24's premium membership and playing server (never the best) ceased in the summer of 2023 and now it has been deleted.

Also Quality Chess publishers, who we strongly recommend, launched a new site this week. Our links page is therefore updated.

30 January: Irish news is updated. Seniors news and calendar are also updated, although there is not much new to report.

22 January: We have updated some of the information files about our UltraCorr2024 database, which has already met with a good response on the first weekend after its launch. The page with additional information has been supplemented by a new page discusisng how we deal with player and tournament metadata.

22 (previously 18 & 19) January: Our Seniors calendar has been updated but there are no major new annoucements. We corrected the dates of the Bergen-Chiemgau congress in late May and the conditions of the German Senior Derby in March.

19 January: Our UltraCorr2024 correspondence chess game database is now on general release. This is not just the 2023 edition with new games added. It has in fact been totally rebuilt from its sources and re-edited to make it as accurate as possible.

Recent customers have already been offered discounts. If you bought in 2021, 2022 or 2023 but did not receive our email, your address may have changed from what you used before. If so, please contact us.


9 January: Our UltraCorr2024 correspondence chess game database is almost ready.

9 January: Our Seniors introduction page, Seniors news, and calendar are updated, and so is Irish news.

29 December 2023: We updated our Seniors introduction and Seniors calendar pages. Much old news has now been stripped out of the Seniors news page to clear the decks for 2024.

22 December: FIDE has received a bid to host the 2024 World Seniors individual championships in Portugal; see our news page. Today we also updated our Irish news and Irish arbiters pages.

Happy Christmas! Then don't forget to watch online some of the World Rapid and Blitz Championships which begin in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on 26 December.

16 December: FIDE has revoked the provisional award of the 2024 World Senior individual championships that were expected to be held in Romania. There is currently a new call for bids, which closes on Thursday. See our news page.

12 (previously 5, 6, 7, 8 and 11) December: Our seniors calendar, our Seniors introduction and Seniors news are now updated including details of several tournaments that had only a skeleton listing previously. There is now a very wide choice of senior competitions in western Europe in the first half of 2024 and doubtless more will be announced later.

Older updates are no longer listed here, with a few exceptions, except for references to our own books and various pages which remain available as they don't go out of date.


28 October 2023: Specially for Hallowe'en, we remind you that our Frankenstein-Dracula story (first published in B. H. Wood's Chess magazine 45 years ago) is available again on this site for a limited period.

6 September: Tim Harding's personal homepage was updated.

6 September: A special celebration of the life and career of English double grandmaster (FIDE and ICCF) Jonathan Penrose, who died in 2021, is being planned to launch in Colchester, Essex, on 7 October. We made our obituary article and our Chess Mail magazine interview with Penrose available again on this website.

20 January 2023: The softcover corrected edition of Tim Harding's book Steinitz in London went on sale from the publisher, McFarland. An image of the new cover (depicting the Anderssen v Steinitz match of 1866) was substituted for the original on the side panel of several pages.

23 February 2022 : Revised our Steinitz errata page.

Several points which are not strictly speaking errors in the text can be found in a new page of research notes which we may develop in future. (Four new items were added to that page this week.) We show, for example, that purports to have the missing game Winawer-Steinitz, Baden-Baden 1870 but they are wrong and should delete it from their database.


22 November 2021: Obituary of Grigory Sanakoev, the 12th correspondence chess world champion.

8 October 2021: Photograph of the elderly J. H. Blackburne and his third wife posted on our new Blackburne family page.


30 August 2021: Obituary page for the late GM Evgeny Sveshnikov.

26 August 2021: Further update of our page about notices of Steinitz in London. The latest glowing review appeared in American Chess Magazine.


12 August 2021: Updated our page about notices of Steinitz in London. Somehow we had overlooked a 4-star review by GM Matthew Sadler which was published earlier this year in New In Chess magazine.

23 April 2021: Added a new page about notices of Steinitz in London. Including a translation of glowing review in Polish magazine Mat saying "This book is a milestone in the literature of chess history."

12 February 2021: Another new article about problems with later Steinitz games in databases.

7 February 2021: Start of a new series about errors in historic databases. Lasker v Steinitz match games go under the microscope. We also updated our research index and work in progress pages.

4 February 2021: We have updated our Steinitz errata page, also mentioning a letter which provides more information about Viennese chess a few years before Steinitz.

18 November 2020: Tim's article about Steinitz has been published in New In Chess magazine.

29 October 2020: The 7-part Netflix television drama The Queen's Gambit, based on the novel by Walter Tevis about a female chess prodigy in the 1960s, is beautifully made and we highly recommend it.


4 July 2020: Tim Harding was officially notified that his application for the title of FIDE Arbiter is approved. He completed his qualification shortly before the Covid-19 pandemic broke out. Tim's homepage is also updated.


19 June 2020: Update on books by the late Mark Dvoretsky. A fifth, posthumous, edition of his Endgame Manual has just been published.

5 May 2020 (new article): How Sir Theodore Tylor, the blind chess master, was portrayed in a novel.

30 March 2020: Early Blackburne game with H. E. Atkins turns up. More Blackburne game corrections sent in by readers. We also posted on that page today PDF copies of the birth and death certificates of John Blackburn (who died in infancy), a brother of the chess master whose existence was unknown to us when we wrote our biography.

27 January 2018: The death occurred of Max Zavanelli, a leading figure in ICCF and American correspondence chess for decades, and a major supporter of Chess Mail in the years when we published our printed magazine. Max had been battling cancer for a long time. The ICCF website has an obituary. Along with George Pyrich and Carlos Flores Gutierrez (see below), who both died just before Christmas, Max was a major figure in guiding the transition of ICCF from the postal to the internet era.

13 January 2018: Made numerous minor corrections to our pages about 7-man endgames. There is a wealth of chess here for anyone who has not yet studied these endings.

24 December 2017: Sad news of the death of an old friend, CC-IM George Pyrich (1951-2017), the Financial Director of ICCF (pictured right). We met George at numerous ICCF Congresses between 1994 and 2015 and always enjoyed his company. Latterly he lived in Spain but he was a native of Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland. His death is a sad loss to the correspondence chess community worldwide. The ICCF website carries an obituary by Scottish CC Association President, Iain Mackintosh, and also an obituary by Alan Borwell of Carlos Flores Gutierrez, another old friend and major figure of his generation in CC. See also our Hans Berliner obituary.

24 October 2017: Updated Blackburne book information, with the recently rediscovered finish to the game Blackburne-Jacobs from the 1904 British Championship. (Thanks to John Saunders.) Also Blackburne's last published game, from his final visit to Glasgow.