About Us

What our Club is all About ?
Howick-Pakuranga Chess Club (an incorporated charitable organisation) has been active in promoting Chess since 1976. Information about the Club's history can be found below, under Dr Richard Sutton. For about the last 10 years our Club has promoted a very strong emphasis on developing Junior involvement and training, and many young chess players around Auckland and New Zealand have come through our Club over the years.

We will be starting 2010 with a cadre of 55 financial Juniors (those whose fees last year were fully subscribed). In the later part of 2009 our Club invested, at considerable cost, in a computer programme to streamline and improve the control of our Junior hour from 6.30 pm to 7.30 pm on Tuesdays. The advantage of having this programme is still being evaluated and fine-tuned, and the greatest benefit so far achieved must be the ability to allocate pairings for players almost instantly between rounds of play. The youngsters are becoming very aware of what happens to their rating when they win, lose or draw. The ratings are closely related to the national rating list through our system of periodic adjustments to the national ratings of our top Juniors on that list. When new Junior members join the system they are allocated a bottom rating of 450 (unless they can identify that a higher rating is warranted) and they soon reach their natural "pecking order" level of rating. This system of streaming the Juniors into continuous combat against a group of players of roughly “their own strength” has proven to be attractive to them in their overall chess development.

It was quite demanding when Kees van den Bosch ran it as a manual system, but the computer eased the load somewhat. It has also made it simpler to think of extending the team of people willing to become Junior Night Controllers on a roster basis, because the present incumbent is a diminishing asset, now 75 years old.

One important item of discussion has to do with the first line of this message, our name and other qualifications. We are an Approved Charity under an Act of Parliament. This enables us to receive donations which will be tax deductible to the donor by quoting our registration number CC34341. This does NOT include normal Club subscriptions.

The Club runs a Trust (The Borovskis Trust) which has an investment policy that enables the annual proceeds from investments to be used for “The furtherance of chess in all its forms.” Full members of the Club can obtain full details of this at any time.

It is our hope that when you become aware of the intricacies of our Club and the voluntary time spent by our members in the Club and further afield in promoting and running chess activities, you might consider supporting us financially by your tax deductible donations. We offer various levels and types of membership choices, details of which you will find by browsing the "Fees" page. We invite your constructive comments on our Website so we can serve you better in the future. See the "Contact Us" page for contact details.

Updated 2nd April 2013. Our sponsor Manukau City Council was disestablished in 2010 and amalgamated into the Auckland Council, which has continued to sponsor the Club. A grant of $1,500 was received for 2012 ($800 for 2011) for costs towards coaching venue hire and equipment. We have in the past reciprocated by advertising Manukau City Council on our website, and have now amended the logo to that of the Auckland Council.

Richard Sutton :
FIDE Master Dr Richard John Sutton was our Club founder. He was born in London, England on 23rd September 1938. He became the New Zealand national chess champion in 1962. The final game against Ortvin Sarapu ended in a draw, so he and Ortvin Sarapu were declared co-champions. In 1970 and 1971 he won the New Zealand championship outright. He represented New Zealand at the 1966 Zonal tournament in Auckland and the 1972 Chess Olympiad in Skopje, Yugoslavia. In 1975 he lost to Jørn Sloth in the final of the world championship of correspondence chess. He was also a former South Island chess champion, and became a FIDE Master in 2005. He was a foundation trustee of the Chess Friends of New Zealand Trust.

Outside chess he was a legal academic. He earned BA and LLM degrees from the University of Auckland and a LLM from Harvard Law School. He was employed at the University of Auckland Law School, and in 1980 became a full professor at the Faculty of Law of the University of Otago in Dunedin. Whilst there he served on two separate occasions as the Dean of the Faculty of Law. He became an emeritus professor in 2005.

In 1969 he and Kensie started the Cockle Bay Chess Club, which became the Howick Chess Club, and in 1976 it was renamed the Howick-Pakuranga Chess Club. In the late eighties the Remuera Chess Club wound down and some members and equipment merged into the Howick-Pakuranga Chess Club.

He passed away after a battle with cancer in Dunedin, New Zealand, aged 70, on 17th April 2009.

See the "Members" page for the tribute.