A LOCKDOWN boom and television sensation could lead to the first York inter-schools championship for many years.

So many families took up chess during the pandemic or after watching the award-winning Netflix series The Queen's Gambit that the junior section of York Chess Club has doubled in size.

Now it is hoping to host the first York InterSchools Chess Competition since the early part of this century.

Ben Rich from the club said said: "Through the junior chess club we know that there are already enthusiastic players at many York schools and we are therefore encouraging their parents, to speak to their children’s schools about entering a team and maybe even helping to organise it, so the task needn't fall to already stretched teaching staff. "

Every school taking part will receive four new chess sets.

Mr Rich said that during the lockdowns he was constantly being asked by people about where they could play or learn about the game, as it was something they could do online.

"The Queen's Gambit was a massive boost for chess and the online websites picked up millions and millions of new players," he said. "It is utterly extraordinary."

The competition will be divided into two sections - up to and including Year Six, and Year Seven and above.

A school can enter as many teams of four players as they like, with each team led by a non-playing adult captain, who could be a parent or teacher.

The competition will be held on Sunday 14th November at Fishergate School, with the winning team receiving the Simon Benedictus Cup.

For more information on how to enter contact Ben Rich on ben@benrich.co.uk or call 07469 159134.

Expressions of interest should be made no later than Wednesday 13th October.