David Anderton RIP (updated 25/4/22)

It is with great sadness we report that David Anderton passed away today, 1st April 2022. This is a great loss. Our condolences go out to his wife, Doreen, and his family. Here is a link to one of his most famous games, where he outplayed the legendary Tony Miles – http://www.wdclchess.org.uk//docs/MilesAnderton/milesanderton.htm
[this report courtesy of the W&DCL – http://www.wdclchess.org.uk/blog/, picture by Carl Portman]

David’s funeral will be held at 1.45 pm on Wednesday 4th May at The Streetly Crematorium, 296 Little Hardwick Road, Walsall WS9 0SG.
They request that no flowers be sent but that they would appreciate donations be made to the charity ‘The Guide Dogs For The Blind’ in their place.

OBITUARY of DAVID WILLIAM ANDERTON OBE born 2.8.1941, died 1.4.2022
Written by Stewart Reuben
Awarded the OBE for services to chess in 1977; President of the BCF 1979-82 (at that time the post included Chief Executive); ECF FIDE Delegate for many years, then member of the FIDE Executive Board 1989-93; Captained the English chess team for 20 years; BCF/then ECF Honorary Life Vice President; Received the ECF President’s award for Services to Chess in 2009 when he stepped down as the ECF legal expert (he stood down from all his roles in the ECF in 2015); David was one of the founder Trustees of The John Robinson Youth Chess Trust in 2006 and was its Chairman from 2006 to 2015; International Candidate Master; International Correspondence Master; FIDE Rating 1986 – 2265; 2006 – 2267; 2011 – 2172; 2019 – 2067

David was born in Walsall, Staffordshire, and lived and worked in the immediate vicinity all his life. He had a colossal positive influence on chess administration in England. This was because he wasn’t just a chess organiser, but also a very active chess player in club and county chess, 4NCL and even English Seniors international team chess. His expertise in the law was also invaluable. He played about 50 competitive games a year. He played for years every Thursday at Pleck Working Men’s Club, along with his schoolteacher second wife, Doreen. One site recorded 330 of his games. Most of his club and county games may be lost forever, but. he was an assiduous collector and had a huge chess library. He won the British 60+ Championship five times, tying three times (once with me). David was taught chess by his father as a five-year-old. In due course he became School Champion of Tettenhall College. In 1972 he became non-playing English team captain and held that position for 20 years. In 1979 he was Midlands Champion. He was the BCF International Director 1982-1990.

He was a key member of various committees that ran several important events, often particularly helping with the negotiations with business sponsors. For example: Phillips & Drew/GLC Kings 1980, 1982, 1984; Acorn Computers World Championship Semifinals 1983; London Docklands USSR v Rest of the World match 1984; GLC (Greater London Council) World Championship Match 1986; Leigh Interests Grand Prix for some years. Stuart Conquest tells that David played in an open tournament in Tuscany in 1996. I didn’t know that he spent much time playing in long international tournaments.

But what did he do with the rest of his time? He was a solicitor who started as an articled clerk, as was the practice in those days. He worked for Anson’s law firm  and was head of Regulatory Law there. From 1977 he also served as a Deputy District Judge. The combination of his competitive chess and understanding of the law was hugely valuable to chess. He was consulted by many chess people, not always just about chess matters. His personal contacts helped him secure several business sponsors for chess and he was in the top four of English people who were successful in this field.

We will miss David Anderton greatly.

Here we reproduce ‘David Anderton Remembered’ with the kind permission of Ansons Solicitors. The original is here – https://www.ansonssolicitors.com/david-anderton-remembered/

David Anderton Remembered – 11th April 2022

David was articled at Haden and Stretton in Walsall prior to qualifying as a solicitor in July 1964.  He swiftly became a partner in that firm and remained as such, working from its Walsall office, until December 1998 when he stepped down, moved to its Lichfield office and became a consultant.  Through most of his years as a Partner he served as the firm’s Managing or Senior Partner and indeed started attending Partners’ meetings as an articled clerk for the purposes of taking the minutes.

In June 2004 David became a consultant to the newly formed firm of Ansons and continued in that role until his death, aged 80, on April 1 2022.  He was never one of those consultants whose name simply appeared on the note paper, or rather on the website, but worked, despite illness in the last few months of his life, to the very end indeed giving advice to clients the evening before he died.  He died as he wanted to – working.

David was typical of his generation of provincial solicitors in that in his early career he turned his hand to most things.  He had endless tales of his experiences in Magistrates and County Courts and there is no doubt that advocacy was his first love.  By the 1970s he began to specialise in property and corporate work while beginning, at the same time, to develop a practise in planning and environmental work.  He gradually eased out of the property and corporate work to focus, when he became a consultant, on planning, environmental and other regulatory work.  What he liked about that work was that it brought him back to his first love – advocacy.

David was interested in politics and in the 1960s was a member of the Bow Group.  During this period he jointly wrote with Baron Clarke of Nottingham aka Ken Clarke a paper on negative income tax.  When Mr Clarke, as he was then, became Chancellor, David wrote to him to enquire if he would be adopting their ideas – he didn’t!

But while David was interested in politics his passions were cricket and chess.  He played cricket at school and for a rather unsuccessful office team and, of course, chess.

He started playing chess when he was five and continued to play at a local and national level throughout his life winning, amongst other things, the British Senior Chess Championship in 2003 (joint); 2005; 2007 (joint); 2009 (joint) and 2011.  He was appointed non playing Captain of the English team in 1972 and held that role for almost twenty years travelling the world with the team.  After stepping down as Captain he continued to help with the national and international administration of chess not least in providing legal advice when necessary (and it seemed to be often!).  He was awarded the OBE in the 1977 New Years Honours list for services to Chess.

David brought to everything he did (whether work or leisure) determination – not determination to win at any cost (although he preferred to win!) but rather a determination to do the very best that he could whatever the circumstances for his clients, his colleagues or his chess teams.  Preparation and planning were everything and, of course, anticipation of what your opponent might do.  He thrived on hard work.

David also brought to everything he did a sense of honour and fairness. He believed in treating everyone equally and was quick to defend the underdog.

Those of us who worked with him will miss him enormously for his skill, for his knowledge, for his support, for his sense of fun and for his stories.  But we will not miss him as much as his beloved wife Doreen and his family.