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Welcome to 3Cs Chess Club ...

Founded 1978

As seen on BBC1's "The One Show"
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Website sponsored by ...

Miners Arts and Music Community Centre, Moston, Manchester.

Details via "Sponsors" section of drop-down box on "Welcome" page

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3Cs Chess Club

St.Edward's RC Parish Hall

Spring Lane


Oldham,  OL4 5AJ


Thursdays 7pm - 9pm

The next 3Cs' weekly club night takes place tonight, Thursday 20 June  (7pm - 9pm) 

Last Updated    9.05am    Thr 20 Jun 2024


Thank you all for your support of the club


Recent updates:

Who We Are  (ECF Membership)

News  (3Cs on Tour)

News  (ECF)

News  (UK Chess Challenge)

News  (Around The World)

Fixtures  (Summer League)

Future Events  (Main Page)

Club Honours  (Main Page)

Coaching  (Main Page)

Coaching  (Quotes 1)

Puzzle Board  (Daily Puzzle 1 - 7)

Welcome to 3Cs' website

Click on the relevant heading at the top of this website to view the main page of your required section. Alternatively just place your cursor over the heading to reveal a drop-down box giving further options and then click on the one you want.

3Cs, or to use its official name "The Children's Chess Club of Oldham", is dedicated to providing the opportunity for local youngsters to learn and play the game of chess.

The club is recognised as one of the most successful production lines of young talent throughout the country, with both the club itself and many of its individual members having gained major honours at local, regional, national and international level.

It's always good when former 3Cs' players who now live out of the area make a visit to the club, as it was when Nathan Gittens came to a recent club night. Nathan began as a junior with 3Cs and although still playing chess, he now lives in Hitchin near Stevenage but had returned north for the annual Whit Friday brass band contests.

Nathan is shown below at the club and when on a 3Cs junior tour to Vigo, Spain in 2009.
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3Cs have officially become the top chess club in the country after winning the ECF National Club Championship.

Further details are in our "2023 National Champions" section (via the drop-down box of our main "Club Honours" page).
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Photograph courtesy of Brendan O'Gorman
We are the Champions3Cs
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3Cs 1 won 3.5 - 2.5 away to Altrincham & Hale 1 A Division of the South-East Lancashire Summer League thanks to wins from Robert McLean, Dale James and Kyle Pelling, together with a Karl Moorcroft draw.


Our u-1300 team's first match in the Development Division brought a 4-0 away win at Bolton; the 3Cs' winning side being Oliver Shijaku, Kinglsey Au, Tom Kearns and Kingston Au.  In the East section of E Division, our 4th team gained a 2.5 - 1.5 home win against our 3rd team. Charlie Locke and Ibrahim Riaz won for 3Cs 4 as did Sachin Osmond for 3Cs 3 while Aaron Lewis and Hafsa Riaz drew their game.

The current list of entrants for events at the 2024 British Championships is now available. So far, the sole 3Cs' entry is from Jonathan Miller who will be playing in the u-1750 event. More details of this year's tournament are in our "British Championships" section (via the drop-down box of the main "News" page).

The South-East Lancashire Summer League has added a Development Division for under-1300 rated players to its fixture list and in which 3Cs will be entering a team.

Urmston 1 conceded their final match of the season against 3Cs 2 which confirmed our second team as winners of the Manchester League B Division championship and therefore became the 90th trophy won by 3Cs' teams since joining the MCF in 1981 ... 25 more than the second most successful club in the League's 132 year history.

Our rapidplay team, 3Cs 6, lost their last match of the season by 7-1 to Ashton 3 who therefore are champions of the Manchester League G Division. The point for 3Cs was provided by a win from Aaron Lewis.

3Cs' International Master Andy Horton made a successful return to chess when playing his first congress since the pandemic. Andy scored 4.5/5 in winning the open section of the Frome Congress. 

Selected details from Phil Adams's latest 3Cs' Newsletter (21 May) can be seen on our main "Coaching" page.  The full content of the fortnightly newsletter (available only to 3Cs' members) includes several tactic problems as well as up-to-date news of events both local and afar.  If any current or former 3Cs' members do not receive the Newsletter but would wish to do so, please e-mail Phil at ""

3Cs 3 finished their season with a 3.5 - 2.5 home win against Bolton 3 therefore securing the runners-up spot in C Division of the Manchester League.  Wins by Mischa Tebelev, Hunain Malik and Karl Moorcroft together with a draw from Ben Newton gave 3Cs the victory.

Our 5th team's last F Division match of 2023-24 ended in a 3-3 draw at home to Bolton 5.  Despite Bolton going 3-0 ahead, wins from Claire Kerton, Ibrahim Riaz and Sean Hicks brought the scores back level.

Alannah Ashton and Kyle Pelling will both be representing England this year. Alannah will be at the European Youth Championships in Prague while Kyle takes part in the Glorney Cup which is contested annually by the top juniors players from the four countries of the British Isles.

3Cs 4 ended their season with a 4-2 defeat at home to Chorlton 4 in D Division of the Manchester League, with wins by Hunain Malik and Ben Newton providing the 3Cs game points.  Our 6th team's home match against Bolton 6 in the rapidplay division was postponed at the request of the visitors.

Our first team have finished as Reyner Shield runners-up for the second year running. Although losing 3.5 - 2.5 at home to Atherton in the final, the visitors played an ineligible player which therefore made the final score 3-3, However, Atherton take the trophy via the board count rule.  Andy Lewis won for 3Cs while Robert Mclean, Greg Eagleton and Kyle Pelling all drew.

                 3Cs Forthcoming Matches

      South-East Lancashire Summer League

                 Monday, 24 June (7.30pm)

      E Division (East)      Blue Club 3  v  3Cs 4
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                        NATIONAL AWARD FOR 3Cs' FOUNDER

3Cs' founder Steve Rigby has been personally honoured by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak who recommended him to receive a "Points of Light" award which is a National Honour bestowed upon individual volunteers whose efforts have made a difference to their community.

The Prime Minister's personal award is in recognition of the 45 years Steve has spent encouraging youngsters to play chess since forming the 3Cs chess club in 1978.

Steve becomes the first person to receive the award for services to chess while further information is in our "External Awards" section, via the drop-down box of the main "Club Honours" page.
3Cs Chess Club featured on the BBC1 primetime television programme "The One Show" on Friday 13 October 2023.

The section of the programme involving 3Cs can be seen by clicking on the box (below) while photographs taken when filming at the club are in our "BBC at 3Cs" section (via the drop-down box of the main "Who We Are" page).

The BBC have kindly given permission for 3Cs to reproduce the broadcast on this website.
3Cs were prominent in the December 2023 issue of the English Chess Federation's monthly newsletter "Chess Moves".

A five-page article (pages 39-43), including several photographs, tells the story of 3Cs' formation and history while also detailing how the club has maintained an ongoing conveyor belt of young talent for many years.

Pages 47-48 report on Steve Rigby's recent "Points of Light" National Honour while pages 4-5 feature the recent British Blitz Championship where 3Cs' International Master Andy Horton became the 2023 English Blitz Champion.

The December 2023 newsletter can be seen by clicking on the following link...

If you are new to chess then click on the links below for some useful information.

The main "Future Events" section of this website includes details of several forthcoming chess tournaments at various levels and which may be of interest for any 3Cs' members wishing to enter.

Just click on the "Future Events" heading at the top of the page. have issued a list of  chess-related phone apps available to download  Click on our main "Chess Links" heading to see the list.

7 chess puzzles - updated every day - plus 3 "Play the Computer" options are available via the drop-down box of our main "Puzzle Board" page.

Go to our "Who Else ?" section (via the drop-down box of the main "Q&A" page) to see which celebrities also play chess.
3Cs' founder Steve Rigby alongside one of the club's coaches, Crystal Ashton.

Although now living near the Welsh border, Steve regularly attends the club and is still actively involved in much of the behind the scenes organisation for 3Cs.

As well as her coaching duties, Crystal also organises the 3Cs' Junior 4NCL team and has also recently passed an arbiters' exam.
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3Cs' first major honour of 2024 has come via FIDE - the World governing body of chess - awarding the title of Candidate Master to Edward Jackson.

Photographs of all our players who have achieved Masters titles are in our "Titled Players" section, via the drop-down box of the main "Club Honours" page.
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3Cs have won the 2023 British Chess Educational Trust award for outstanding achievement and encouragement of chess at junior level and is the most prestigious national honour specifically for the promotion of junior chess.

The club have received an engraved chess board, boxed pieces and clock (shown below). More details are in our "ECF Awards" section (via the drop-down box of the main "Club Honours" page).
9 year old James Kaliski, one of the current group of up-and-coming 3Cs' young players. displayed his skills on the open-air chess set in Manchester city centre, receiving plenty of praiseworthy comments from people who stopped to watch as he took on adult opponents.

Yes, James won and was even rewarded with free ice cream courtesy of a vendor who was delighted that James has attracted a large crowd near to her van on such a hot afternoon.
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3Cs' very own Grandmaster STEPHEN GORDON who joined the club while still at primary school and has since progressed to become one of the World's elite group of players.

The photographs above show Stephen in action (left) during the 2019 British Championships and also in conversation with Victor Korchnoi, one of the greatest players of all time.

Despite his talent often being sought by various teams both home and abroad, including regular appearances in the lucrative German national chess Bundersliga, Stephen continues to play for 3Cs.

He has twice won the English Championship, in 2007 and 2012, as well as the 2019 British Rapidplay title while in 2005 he triumphed over more than 1,500 other competitors to win the UK Chess Challenge title.

Away from the board Stephen has also excelled with his ability in promoting the game of chess and for several years hosted "The Full English Breakfast", a chess podcast often highlighting the lighter side of the game. He is also regularly in demand to provide expert analysis of games played at the very top level.

Much of the 3Cs' success for several years is due to many of its juniors continuing to play with the club in their later years ... with the photo (below) providing such examples.

From left to right, Dale James, Andy Lewis and Adam Ashton, all began playing chess for 3Cs while at junior school and are all still involved with the club.
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3Cs have two online clubs via "" and "" and which can be seen via the following links ...
                    ALANNAH ASHTON
  2023 British Girls' under-12s' Champion
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Photograph courtesy of Adrian Elwin
Images from a recent 3Cs' club night showing some junior members (above) and those with more experience (below).
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Just a typical night at a local chess club ???


However, the photograph (left) is from a 3Cs' weekly club night and the "typical kind of members" include Grandmaster Stephen Gordon (seated) as well as International Master Andy Horton (second left) and Women's International Master and six times French women's champion Sophie Milliet (third left).


Also in the picture are Helal Ahmed (extreme left); Michael Tebelev (third right) and head coach Phil Adams (extreme right).

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Founded in 1978 to promote and develop chess in Oldham Primary Schools and the surrounding districts, 3Cs has grown since then into one of the largest and strongest junior chess club in the country.  Any child is given a welcome, although most are recruited from the Oldham Primary Schools and join by invitation, while they are then encouraged to continue attending once they reach secondary-school age.


The club also has adult members of course who usually fall into one of three categories: ex-juniors who have since grown up; parents of juniors; player-coaches. However, any adults are also made welcome on condition that they actively support the aims and ethos of the club, whose main focus is the development and welfare of the children.


The overall achievements of the club have twice resulted in it receiving the English Chess Federation's "Club of the Year" award - the only club throughout the country to achieve the honour on two occasions - whilst in 2017 the club gained a place among the very best by qualifying to play in the European Club Cup, a feat they repeated in 2018.


However, despite these successes locally, nationally and Internationally, both as a club and for many of its members individually, 3Cs' greatest satisfaction - and forever the main focus of the club - is still seeing local youngsters coming through the door on their weekly club nights (Thursdays 7pm - 9pm) to just enjoy learning and playing the game.

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