Welcome to the Home of UK Junior Chess

Competitions, lessons and coaching programmes for junior chess players of all ages whether complete beginner or international standard.

Summer Online Chess Camp

Our popular Online Summer Camp returns in 2024 with 3 weeks of lessons, games and activities. The classes are run by UKCC Head Coach and England selector Sarah Longson and other Academy coaches. 3 Week camp from 05/08/24 to 23/08/24 (weekdays only). Choose individual weeks or all 3. Ages 6-15. Suitable for novices (players who know the rules) through to advanced intermediate.

About Us

We’re Sarah and Alex Longson and we run the UK Chess Challenge. We are family run business aiming to raise a generation of children with superpowers of critical thinking, confidence, resilience and empathy by helping them learn and play chess.

We live in Cheshire with our two young children Isabelle and Tobias. We met at a chess tournament (of course) in Gatwick 2011.

Sarah is legal graduate and former British Ladies Champion and member of the English Ladies international team. Many of her students have gone on to win national and European titles and represented the national team. Sarah is our Head Coach and personally oversees our classes.

Alex is a qualified accountant and manages the back office processes and writes our bespoke training material. He is a FIDE Master and former England junior international.

What Our Customers Are Saying

Don’t just take it from us, let our customers do the talking!

” I really like the quizzes! I have learned a lot about positional play from the classes and I like the tournaments too.

Chess has taught me to persist even when things get difficult. ”


” My favourite part of the chess lessons are the quizzes.

Chess has helped me with my concentration and I’ve made lots of friends through chess”


“I really enjoy helping out in the UK Chess Challenge clubs – I’ve done a live stream commentating on a blitz tournament and played a simul against some of the other students ”


Ian RoyleIan Royle
19:37 20 Oct 22
Blenheim Palace was a truly wonderful setting for this most prestigious of events. The grandeur of the venue was very much in keeping with the coming together of the elite of UK junior chess. The event has been organised incredibly well from nationwide Megafinals all the way through to the presentations in the Great Hall at the Palace. I also loved the fact that parents can follow the matches on the live boards on online platforms.
Anju RamAnju Ram
18:44 20 Oct 22
This is our second year at the Delancey schools UK chess challenge terrafinal tournament at Blenheim palace and we have been so impressed with the way the whole event was conducted - extremely professional and absolutely flawless ! Kudos to Sarah , Alex and their amazing team !
Anne-Claire DupuisAnne-Claire Dupuis
12:18 20 Oct 22
Our son discovered a few years ago Delancey Schools UK Chess Challenge thanks to his primary school chess club. The tournament is extremely well organised, with a nice atmosphere between the players. It gave our son the opportunity to play in tournaments against excellent chess players of the whole country. Last weekend, we had an amazing time at Blenheim palace where he played the Terafinale.
Lakshmy Priya S VLakshmy Priya S V
10:43 20 Oct 22
Highly recommend Delancey Schools UK Chess Challenge!! Our daughter immensely enjoys their chess classes which are very instructive and interactive.The UKCC is an multi-stage event were the competition gets progressively harder with each stage and for the last two years the Terafinals had been held at the iconic Blenheim Palace.
We have a great experience every year ( even during Covid ) . Sarah & Alex and their team put so many efforts to involve children of all levels and help both children and parents all the way through. My son was qualified for Terafinal and we had a great time in Blenheim Palace, it was the chess holiday which perfect organized according to all the most modern requirements but also a great time with family and friends in an incredibly beautiful place. I find UK Chess Challenge is the best chess event in the country, I can’t recommend it enough!

Parents – What We Offer

Delancey UK Chess Challenge

The UK’s largest chess competition – for young chess players of all ages and abilities. In-person and online events available.

Group Coaching & Programmes

Lessons and coaching for aspiring young talents. Introducing the ‘Academy’ – part of the official England Junior Development Pathway.

121 Coaching and Mentoring

Get your personalised assessment, training plan and follow-up coaching sessions whilst working directly with Sarah.

Chess Academy

Our flagship training programme for players from novice to international level. Players are grouped into 5 experience levels with regular tournaments and classes led by some of the UK’s most experienced trainers, including Grandmasters, International Masters and our Head Coach Sarah. Academy Alumni include World, European, British and UKCC Champions!

About the Delancey UK Chess Challenge

The following video, which was kindly produced by our sponsors Delancey, includes highlights from one of our events and interviews with players and organisers.

Resources for Parents

Top 10 Tips For Chess Parents

Whether you are a non-playing parent or know a thing or two about chess one thing is the same - being a chess parent is a challenging role. Knowing how best to support your child and help them get the best out of themselves whilst dealing with the inevitable highs and...

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Chess Learning Personas – Which one is your child?

Everyone learns in a different way and the last thing we would try and do is foist our own preferences onto another individual. Chess is no different and what worked for one player doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for another. In this spirit we have...

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The Rising Tide of AI – Chess and Computers

A history of chess computing and a look into the future Deep Blue was intelligent the way your programmable alarm clock is intelligent. Not that losing to a $10 million alarm clock made me feel any better Chess has been an important hurdle in the...

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