Aigburth Chess Club started life in 1972 as Dista Chess Club. That was the year of the Fischer-Spassky match and the conversation over lunch in the canteen at Dista (Eli Lilly) was invariably about the match and the politics surrounding it. We soon discovered several of us had played some competitive chess - even if only at school. Will Cook had actually played for a proper team and Roger Humphreys had been a winner at the prestigious Liverpool Junior Congress.

And so a team was formed. We entered the Liverpool League in September of that year playing in Division 6. We won promotion the first season and reached the final of the Knock-out Cup (now known as the John Ripley Trophy) only to lose in the final to Kirkdale (now Atticus) who entered the League the same season but playing in Division Two.

The following season saw us increase to two teams. We again won promotion and got to the final of the Cup where we beat Wallasey. We were the last non first division team to win the Cup until Skelmersdale beat us in the final in 2004.

Up to this point all the players either worked at Dista or were related to employees, but we were becoming well known in the Speke/Halewood area of Liverpool and some non employees began to join the club. Ron Harrison joined at this time.

For the first five years we played within the factory at Speke but with more non employees playing this became impractical and we had to move out of the factory. We played in a couple of venues in Halewood before settling into the Hunts Cross Hotel.

The first team saw regular promotion during the 1970's and in 1981 finally won promotion to the first division. It was difficult in the first couple of seasons but we managed to hold on and that started to attract some stronger players.

Our annus mirabilis occurred in 1991 when we won the First Division Championship and the John Ripley Cup AND the Second Division Championship such that in 1992 we had two teams in the first division for the only time. This was also the year in which we won the Knotty Ash Cup for the only time (so far). We changed our name to the Hunts Cross Chess Club and our good fortune changed as well. The team slowly began to break up (only Ian Campbell and myself remain from those times) and the success wasn't repeated, although we missed the League title a couple of years later by the narrowest of margins. We tied with Atticus on match points and on board points but after the elimination of all bottom board results they came out on top.
In 2001 we were relegated back to Division 2 but this proved a fillip as several younger players came through strongly and we bounced back with promotion at the first attempt.

In 2003 our venue was converted to a restaurant so once again we moved, this time to Aigburth People's Hall (APH) and with it another name change.
Success almost followed immediately in 2004 but we lost in the final of the John Ripley Cup to Skelmersdale.

The club continued to gain in strength and in 2007 we repeated the double success of 1991 by winning the First Division Championship and the John Ripley Cup.

Soon after we found ourselves on the move again as the APH closed down but as so after happens the cloud had a silver lining and we moved to our present venue at St Charles which is an excellent venue and I think the best we have had in 40 years.

The move was also good for membership numbers and we were soon able to expand to running 4 teams. Success was also soon coming as we won the First Division Championship again in 2010 followed by the second team winning Division 2 in 2011 so the 2011-12 season sees us with 2 teams in the First division for only the second time in our history.

We have regularly entered the NCCU club events and we won the Major Cup in 1999 and the Minor cup in 2003.

Dave Pearcey