James A. Friar 26/10/55 to 27/05/2016
Jim was an active member of Kidderminster Chess Club for many years. He enjoyed a spell as Club President and captained the Worcestershire and District first team. He was also Captain of the Worcestershire County First Team. Jim won many of the club’s internal competitions, being club champion on many occasions and was always a fierce and often successful competitor in quick-play events. Prior to that Jim had been a member of the West Bromwich club for many years.
Jim was one of the nicest men you could ever meet, always polite and greeting people with a friendly handshake. He would always offer lifts for matches and rarely accept reimbursement for travel costs, he would just say "buy me a beer when we’re next at the club”. On many occasions he would be at the bar as you walk in and immediately say, “can I get you a pint”.
Jim was also an excellent teacher of chess and did a great job in encouraging his sons James and Joseph to take up the game and become very strong payers, and young men that any parent would be proud of. He taught chess at King’s School in Worcester and had considerable involvement with Worcester Junior Chess Academy, later becoming an English Chess Federation Accredited Coach. He was a great organiser too, always on hand to promote and organise junior tournaments.
Jim also helped to promote chess in his home town, helping to establish Bewdley St Anne’s Chess Club and running an annual Bewdley Charity Chess Tournament. He will be missed greatly but will always remain in our thoughts.
John Wrench on behalf of Kidderminster Chess Club. (May 2016)