Latest News


This page gives general news about both the West Berks Scrabble Club and its members. As such it will include details of notable achievements of members in other Scrabble events. Additionally, it will contain details of any major news stories in the Scrabble Movement, together with links to other web sites.



The Transcript of The Eggheads broadcast

We have found the transcript of the edition of Eggheads in which the West Berks Scrabble Club participated. The show was recorded on Saturday 26th October 2013 and broadcast in September 2014. The transcript of the program can be seen by clicking here . Note that it will open in a new window.


The 2016 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 25th April 2017, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



Success at Aylesbury

On Saturday 1st April 2017, seven members of the club entered the Aylesbury Open tournament, with representation for the Club in all 4 divisions of the event. In the C division, Carol Bartlett achieved 5th place; in the A division, David Sutton achieved 4th place, but pride of place from the Club's perspective was Iris Cornish, who won division D. It was also a notable event as being the first external tournament in which Dave Stiles competed.



Dennis Harvey

It is with saddened heart that we report the death on 14th March 2017 of one of our stalwart members, Dennis Harvey. Dennis first came to the Club in 2004 and became one of the regular players on the Thursday afternoon sessions. We shall remember him for his cheerfulness and jovial personality. Our thoughts go out to his family at this sad time.



The 2016 Christmas Meeting

West Berks Scrabble Club have always raised money for good causes, and this year was no exception. At our Christmas meeting (late December) our members were invited to make charitable donations. The receiving cause for this donation was the Salvation Army/Reading Homeless, who were selected by a vote of all of our members.

At the end of the evening the amount raised was £155, bringing our total charitable donations throughout the Club’s history to £8,945.33.



Changes for Thursday Meetings

From January 2017, the Thursday afternoon meetings will switch from being weekly to taking place twice a month on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month. The Meetings page shows the exact dates. Tuesday meetings remain weekly.



A Visit From The World Champion

On Tuesday November 8th 2016 the Club was visited by Brett Smitheram. When Brett worked in the area, he was a Club member and indeed won the Club league.

The primary reason for Brett's visit, was to give the Club an insight into the experience of his most recent, and arguably most prestigeous tournament win, The World Championships, which were held in Lille some weeks previously. Having spoken of his time at that tournament, Brett gave members of the club a chance to play him to potentially beat The World Champion. Needless to say, he finished the evening with his record still intact.

The photograph shows Brett with the World Championship Trophy.
Brett with the World Championship Trophy


The 2015 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 12th April 2016, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



Success at Aylesbury

On Saturday 2nd April 2016, four members of the club entered the Aylesbury Open tournament. The best performing was Fran Burling, who achieved second place in the B division.



The 2015 Christmas Meeting

West Berks Scrabble Club have always raised money for good causes, and this year was no exception. At our Christmas meeting (in Mid December) our members were invited to make charitable donations. Alongside this we held a raffle. The receiving cause for this donation was the Alzheimer’s Society in Reading, who had been selected by a vote of all of our members.

At the end of the evening the amount raised was £117, bringing our total charitable donations throughout the Club’s history to £8,790.33.

The cheque was later presented by Ian and Elizabeth Burn to Fiona Rackham of the Alzheimer’s Society.

Fiona is the Community Fundraiser for Berkshire, Bedfordshire and Oxfordshire.
Presentation of cheque


The 2015 Tea Dance Report

The Tea Dance which was organised by the Club in conjuction with Silver Surfers Aspire for Life and in support of Friends Of Purley Barn was held on Sunday 11th October 2015 in The Barn. As a result of the dance, £310 was raised for Friends of Purley Barn. More details can be found by navigating to the Tea Dance 2015 section on the Social Events page or by clicking here .



The 2015 Tea Dance

The Club are pleased to announce that they will be organising a Tea dance in conjuction with Silver Surfers Aspire for Life and in support of Friends Of Purley Barn. The dance will be held on Sunday 11th October 2015 in The Barn. More details can be found by navigating to the Tea Dance 2015 page or by clicking here .



The 2014 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 14th April 2015, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



Double Success at Aylesbury

On Saturday 11th April 2015, six members of the club entered the Aylesbury Open tournament. Two members of the club were awarded divisional prizes. David Sutton took second place in division A and Iris Cornish took the Ratings Prize in division C.



A Celebration of 20 Years

March 23rd 2015 marked the 20th anniversary of the Club's first meeting. To mark the occasion, celebrations were held on the Thursday and Tuesday nearest to the anniversary day. The images show members at each of those occasions.
Tuesday's Anniversary Party
Thursday's Anniversary Party Additionally a pamphlet was produced which recorded the people who had come along to the Club during that time. The pamphlet was given to all members of the Club and is available by clicking here .



A Prize Winning Poet In Our Midst

On June 24th 2014, we were surprised that one of the Club members, David Sutton, was not at the Tuesday night meeting, an event for which David is a regular attendee. His reasons for not being with us that evening were that he was receiving the winner's plaudits at the Adlestrop Poetry Competition.

More details of the event can be read by clicking here . Congratulations go to David, a man of many talents.



Les Jamieson

It is with saddened heart that we report the death on 21st June of one of our stalwart members, Les Jamieson.
Les joined the Club in 2005 after seeing us at an event in Bucknall’s Meadow and was a regular attendee at our Thursday afternoon sessions. In his time with the Club he won the C league once, the B league twice and was once the most improved player of the year. However the achievement which he will always be known for was a play of the word BRAZENLY in February 2012, scoring a massive 311 points for a single move. More details on this feat are further down this page.

We shall not forget Les, and to this end we shall name the perpetual trophy for the B league as “The Les Jamieson Memorial Trophy".



Double Success at Aylesbury

On Saturday 12th April 2014, six members of the club entered the Aylesbury Open tournament. Two members of the club were awarded divisional prizes. Ian Burn took third place in division B and Audrey Medhurst took second place in division D.



The 2013 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 8th April 2014, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



Success at Southampton

On Sunday 23rd March 2014, four members of the club entered the Southampton Open tournament. Southampton is a tournament which gives a single ratings prize for the player, in any division, who has the best performance of the day when comparing their expected finishing position and their final result. The winner of that prize is awarded the Terry Hollington Memorial Shield, in memory of Terry Hollington who had a major influence on scrabble, both in south Hampshire and nationally. Having finished 16 places higher than expected in 5th place in Division A, Club chairman Ian Burn was presented with this trophy to retain for a year.



Success at Swindon

On Sunday 8th March 2014, several members of the club entered the Swindon Open tournament. The highlight of the day in terms of achievement by a club member was that of David Sutton, who took second place in the top division. The result was by the narrowest of margins, losing the title by 10 points of spread (the difference between your score and your total opponant's scores), having had a single point win in his final game.



A Tilt At The Eggheads

On Saturday 26th October 2013, a team of 6 members of the Club took part in the recording of an edition of the BBC2 television programme Eggheads. The story of the experience is detailed on the Social Events tab. The members of the team were Ian Burn (captain), Elizabeth Hull, Colin Edgar, Sue Rawlins and Len Choules. Iris Cornish was the team standby. When broadcasting details are available they will be detailed here.



Success at Luton

On Saturday 29th June 2013, 3 members of the Club took part in the Luton Scrabble Tournament. The success of the day was Iris Cornish who finished in 3rd place in her division. The other members taking part were Audrey Medhurst and Elizabeth Hull.



Success at the Southern Regional event of the National Scrabble Clubs Championships

On Sunday 2nd June 2013, 6 members of the Club took part in the Southern Area event for the National Scrabble Championships. The event was held at Holbury in Hampshire and at the end of the day, one of the club members, Elizabeth Hull qualified for the semi-final stage which is being held this year at the Millenium Stadium in Cardiff. Another Club member, Audrey Medhurst was awarded the ratings prize.

As part of the event, the regional heats for the National Scrabble Clubs Championships were held. The 6 West Berks members were split into 2 teams and it is with great pleasure that we announce that the winners of the Plate competition were the West Berks B team of Audrey Medhurst, Fran Burling and Iris Cornish. Unfortunately, due to an inept performance by the tournament director, Jo Kollar, the trophies were not awarded until significantly after the event. This should not detract from the team's fine performance.



A Garden Opening For Charity

On Friday 31st May 2013, Elizabeth and Ian Burn opened their garden to the public, in aid of Help for Heroes, and under the banner of the West Berks Scrabble Club. A full report and photos are available by clicking on the Open Garden tab.



The 2012 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 23rd April 2013, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



Large West Berks Contingent in Swindon

On Sunday 17th March 2013, seven members of the club braved the near blizzard conditions on the M4 to take part in the Swindon Scrabble Tournament. Although no prizes were picked up by any of the West Berks Club members, David Sutton (A Division), Ian Burn (B Division) and Audrey Medhurst (D Division) all finished in the top 6 in their divisions.



Success for West Berks member in Southampton

On Sunday 24th February 2013, five members of the club travelled to Hedge End in Hampshire to take part in the Southampton Scrabble Tournament. The five members, Elizabeth Hull (A Division), Ian Burn (B Bivision), Iris Cornish (C Division), Audrey Medhurst (C Division) and Pat Johnson (D Division) all had reasonable days, with their final positions reflecting their relative standings in the respective divisions. However, the highlight was club member Ian Burn's performance in the B division where he attained 3rd place in a competitive division.



A New Scrabble Publication

The Scrabble Player's Handbook is now available to download for FREE.
Written by a dozen former World Scrabble Championship competitors in a style that is accessible and understandable for players of all levels, The Scrabble Player's Handbook is the definitive 162-page guide to how to play competitive Scrabble. The Scrabble Players Handbook can be accessed from here or from the Links tab



More Success - this time in Nailsea

On Sunday 21st October 2012, Club member Iris Cornish travelled to the West Country to take part in the Nailsea Scrabble Tournament. With a playing record of 6 wins and one defeat on the day, Iris achieved second place in Division C.



Success for West Berks member in Bournemouth

On Sunday 7th October 2012, three members of the club travelled to Bournemouth to take part in the Bournemouth Scrabble Tournament. With representation in all 3 divisions, Elizabeth Hull took 5th place in the A division and Audrey Medhurst achieved the same position in the C division. However, the highlight was club member Ian Burn's performance in the B division where he was the divisional winner. Proving that Bournemouth is a happy hunting ground for Ian, his success in 2012 mirrored his success in 2011.



The Jubilee Tea Dance

As part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations, the Club hosted a Tea Dance. Full details of the event can be found on the Tea Dance tab in the navigational pane.



The National Scrabble Championships 2012

On Sunday 20th May 2012, 5 members of the Club participated in the Southern Regional event of the National Scrabble Championships which were held at Fawley in Hampshire. The event also encompassed the National Clubs Championships and the Club was represented by a team of Elizabeth Hull, Ian Burn and Carol Bartlett. In the final analysis, the team finished 4th out of 5 teams and none of the Club's entrants qualified for the semi-final stage. However the 2 ratings prizes for the event, which reflects how a player performed compared to their expected final placings, were both won by West Berks members: Audrey Medhurst and Carol Bartlett. The fifth member competing was Fran Burling.



The 2011 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 17th April 2012, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



West Berks Members' Success in Southampton

On Sunday 15th April 2012, some 7 members of the Club took part in the annual Southampton Scrabble Tournament. The entrants were split into 4 divisions, with club representation in all of the 4 divisions. Building on from recent successes at other events, both Audrey Medhurst and David Sutton achieved the runner-up spot in their divisions; Audrey in division D and David in division A.



Jubilee Tea Dance

As part of the celebrations to mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee in June, the Club will host a Tea Dance. Details of the background to the event and a report on the event itself are on the Tea dance tab in the navigational pane.



West Berks Members' Success in Aylesbury

On Saturday 31st March 2012, 4 members of the Club took part in the annual Aylesbury Scrabble Tournament. The entrants were split into 4 divisions, with club representation in 3 of the 4 divisions. The performance of the day from a West Berks perspective was that of David Sutton who achieved second place in division A.



West Berks Members' Success in Swindon

On Sunday 11th February 2012, some 7 members of the Club took part in the annual Swindon Open Scrabble Tournament. The entrants were split into 4 divisions, with club representation in all of the 4 divisions. The performance of the day from a West Berks perspective was that of Carol Bartlett who won the C division, being unbeaten on the day with 6 wins and a draw from her 7 games. A further notable performance was by Audrey Medhurst who achieved third place in division D.



A High Scoring Afternoon at West Berks

On Thursday 16th February 2012 the club met for its usual Thursday afternoon meeting, not knowing that it would be a memorable day for the club's oldest member.

Les Jamieson, who celebrated his 90th birthday in 2011, found that he had the following tiles on his rack:

W E S T  B E

It is fair to say that this is a rack which by itself shows little promise. However, Les noticed that an E was already on the board, and using this E, and declaring the blank tile as a B, he played the word BRAZENLY.

Les's high scoring move This would be a good score when played anywhere on the board, but in this case, the positioning of the already played E meant that the 8 letter word spanned 2 triple word scores. This resulted in the value of the word being multiplied by 9. To compound the score, the Z was played on a double letter square. In total, together with the 50 point bonus for playing his complete rack, the score for the move was a massive 311 points, which helped to boost his Les's game total to a jaw dropping 708 points, both of which are club record scores.

Les firmly deserved the warm round of applause which was given by all members present.



Scrabble Players Converge on Purley

On Saturday 21st January 2012, the club held its annual open tournament, the 12th such event in the Club's history. Some 70 players from across the country played 7 rounds of Scrabble, some 238 individual games, until the winners could be determined.
Andy Cook, Evelyn Wallace and Fran Burling won divisions A, B and C respectively with Fran also taking the Best of Berkshire trophy for the best performance from a member of the Berkshire based clubs. Full results of the event are here.



Pat Bennett Wins the Christmas Event

On Tuesday 13th December 2011, the club held its traditional internal handicap event. The basis of the event is that all people should have an equal chance of winning, a situation enabled by virtue of the fact that all players did not all start with a zero score. The better the player, then the larger the points deficit they were required to make up. At the end of the evening, Pat Bennett won the event beating Carol Bartlett into second place. The full results can be seen by clicking here .



A memorable date for West Berks member

On Monday 3rd October, the Club held its annual eating out. This year, the date and venue were moved forward from the traditional January/February time to October to coincide with the 90th birthday of Les Jamieson, the Club's oldest member. Members of the club met for a fine lunch which was enjoyed by all.



Success for West Berks member in Bournemouth

On Sunday 2nd October 2011, four members of the club travelled to Bournemouth to take part in the Bournemouth Scrabble Tournament. On one of the hottest recorded days in October it seemed fitting to have a coastal outing. With representation in all 3 divisions, the highlight was club member Ian Burn's performance in the B division where he was the divisional winner. The other members taking part in the day were Elizabeth Hull, Iris Cornish and Audrey Medhurst.



Success for West Berks in the National Scrabble Club Championship

On Sunday 15th May 2011, the Club fielded two teams in the National Scrabble Club Chamionships - Southern Regional event which was held in Fawley, Hampshire. The teams consisted of David Sutton, Elizabeth Hull and Ian Burn as one team and Fran Burling, Iris Cornish and Audrey Medhurst in the second team. At the end of the event, the 2nd team was pipped by a 1/2 game for the Plate competition.

The event also served as the Southern Region qualification event for the National Scrabble Championships. We are pleased to announce that Club member Elizabeth Hull qualified for the national event in Leeds as a result of her achievements at the Fawley event.



The 2010 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 19th April 2011, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



David's success continues

On Sunday 10th April 2011, 6 members of the Club took part in the annual Southampton Scrabble Tournament. David Sutton continued his recent rich vein of form with a second place in the A division.



More success - this time at Aylesbury

On Saturday 2nd April 2011, 4 members of the Club took part in the annual Aylesbury Charity Scrabble Tournament. The entrants were split into 3 divisions, with club representation in all of the 3 divisions. From a West Berks perspective it was a very successful day; In the C division, Audrey Medhurst attained 2nd place and in the A division, David Sutton was the winner. As such it was the first tournament for some time with multiple success.



West Berks Members' Success in Andover

On Sunday 20th February 2011, some 7 members of the Club took part in the annual Hampshire Open Scrabble Congress, which was held in the John Hanson school in Andover. The entrants were split into 4 divisions, with club representation in all of the 4 divisions. The performance of the day from a West Berks perspective was that of Iris Cornish who attained 2nd place in the C division. The following link contains various photographs taken at the event and published by Yoke Shin Photographs from the Andover Tournament.



A Return Team Event Against The Phyllis Court Club

On Saturday, 12th February 2011, the club were invited to a challenge match hosted by the Phyllis Court Scrabble Club which is based in nearby Henley on Thames. The event was a match between a team from the West Berks Club and the Phyllis Court Scrabble Club. The teams consisted of 5 players each and the format was that each team member played every member of the opposing team. As such, 5 rounds of 5 games were held. Going into the final round, the scores were tied on 10 wins each; after the first four matches in the final round had completed, the honours were still even, at 12 all. So it was left to Sue Rawlins and Nova Williams to battle it out for the overall honour. In the event, Sue won by a close margin of 39 points, meaning that West Berks won by 13 games to 12. The West Berks Club would wish to thank Phyllis Court for their excellent hospitality. For completeness, the West Berks team members were Ian Burn, Fran Burling, Iris Cornish, Audrey Medhurst and Sue Rawlins. Phyllis Court were represented by Sharon Hewitt, Nova Williams, Sonia Cox, Janetta Mills and Charles Tollit.



Scrabble Players Converge on Purley

On Saturday 15th January 2011, the club held its annual open tournament, the 11th such event in the Club's history. Some 76 players from across the country played 7 rounds of Scrabble, some 266 individual games, until the winners could be determined.
David Sutton, Andy Gray and Chris Smith won divisions A, B and C respectively with David also taking the Best of Berkshire trophy for the best performance from a member of the Berkshire based clubs. Full results of the event are here.
The event also had some wide coverage in the local press. A full report is available on the 2011 Event navigation button.



Kate Choules Wins the Christmas Event

On Tuesday 14th December 2010, the club held its traditional internal handicap event. The basis of the event is that all people should have an equal chance of winning, a situation enabled by virtue of the fact that all players did not all start with a zero score. The better the player, then the larger the points deficit they were required to make up. At the end of the evening, Kate Choules won the event beating Sue Lloyd into second place. The full results can be seen by clicking here .



A Team Event Against The Phyllis Court Club

On Saturday, 11th December 2010, the club hosted a challenge match between the West Berks Club and the Phyllis Court Scrabble Club, which is based in nearby Henley on Thames. The teams consisted of 5 players each and the format was that each team member played every member of the opposing team. As such, 5 rounds of 5 games were held. The final score was a 19 - 6 win to West Berks. The undoubted star of the day was Carol Bartlett who won all of her games. For completeness, the West Berks team members were Ian Burn, Carol Bartlett, Iris Cornish, Audrey Medhurst and Sue Rawlins. Phyllis Court were represented by Sharon Hewitt, Nova Williams, Sonia Cox, Brenda Keast and Jill Findlay.



Success for West Berks Members in Littlehampton

On Sunday, 26th September 2010, Rustington Scrabble club held a one day competition in Littlehampton. Proceeds from the event went to the local St Barnabus hospital. Three members of the club, Elizabeth Hull, Audrey Medhurst and Ian Burn, made the journey to Littlehampton on a fine September morning. At the lunch stage, it was looking quite good for West Berks contingent, with both Elizabeth and Ian leading their respective groups (there were 5 groups in all) and Audrey handily placed in her group. At the end of the event it was slightly different, with Elizabeth and Audrey slipping up, but Ian was victorious in his group and with 6 wins and a draw from the 7 games, he was the only unbeaten player across all groups.



Success for West Berks Members at the British Matchplay Scrabble Championships

Over the August Bank Holiday weekend, the elite of UK scrabble and also some visitors from overseas (Malta, Australia, Holland, Israel, Republic of Ireland) gathered in Staffordshire for the annual British matchplay Scrabble Championships, arguably the premier event in the UK Scrabble calendar. The main event was won by former West Berks Scrabble Club member, Brett Smitheram, winning the title for the 4th time and thus becoming the equal most successful player at the event. The only other players to have won the event 4 times are Allan Simmons and Mark Nyman. In the warm-up event, West Berks member Ian Burn took second place in the B division of the Men's championship, prior to his role as tournament director for the main event.



Success for West Berks in the National Scrabble Club Championship

On Sunday 23rd May 2010, the Club fielded a team in the National Scrabble Club Chamionships - Southern Regional event which was held in Fawley, Hampshire. The team consisted of Ian Burn, Elizabeth Hull and Carol Bartlett. At the end of the event, the team had done enough to win the Plate competition, the first such award in the Club's history.

The event also served as the Southern Region qualification event for the National Scrabble Championships. We are pleased to announce that Club members Elizabeth Hull and Iris Cornish qualified for the national event in Leeds as a result of their achievements at the Fawley event.



The 2009 West Berkshire league results

At the Club's AGM on Tuesday 20th April 2010, the prizes were awarded for the divisions of the internal club league. The prize winners rightly take their place on the Honours Board section of this web-site. The full results can be seen by clicking here . Congratulations go to all prize winners.



A fine day in Aylesbury

On Saturday 17th April 2010, some 6 members of the Club took part in the annual Aylesbury tournament. It would have been 7 but for the travel problems caused by volcanic ash which meant that one member spent his day driving to Germany rather than playing Scrabble. On the Scrabble front, David Sutton continued his rich vein of form in taking second place in division A.



A good day in Southampton

On Sunday 11th April 2010, some 6 members of the Club took part in the annual Southampton tournament. These players were playing across all of the 4 divisions. At the end of the day, Elizabeth Hull picked up a trophy for her third place in division B, although that was surpassed by David Sutton's second place in division A.



Further Tournament Success

On Sunday 14th March 2010, David Sutton continued his rich vein of success in 2010 in taking 3rd place in the top division of the Swindon tournament.



West Berks Members' Success in Andover

On Sunday 21st February 2010, some 8 members of the Club took part in the annual Hampshire Open Scrabble Congress, which was held in the John Hanson school in Andover. This represented the largest number of West Berks members competing in an external tournmament other than our own. The entrants were split into 4 divisions, with club representation in the top 3 divisions. In the B division Ian Burn clinched 3rd place, but the performance of the day went to David Sutton, who won the A division, and with it the title of Hampshire Champion 2010. In taking the title, David was the only one of the 100 competitors who were unbeaten during the day.




Scrabble Players raise £600 for Duchess of Kent Hospice in Reading

Having cancelled the annual tournament because of adverse weather conditions, it was heartening that a significant number of players elected to donate all or part of their refund monies to the charity which would have been the beneficiary of this year's event.
As such the club was able to give a donation of £600.00 to the Duchess of Kent Hospice
The club extends its thanks to all who enabled it to make this donation.
More of this story on the 2010 events page.



Snowy Conditions Cancel the 2010 Tournament

Severe weather conditions in the lead up to the tournament which was due to be held on January 16 caused the club to cancel what would have been the tenth annual West Berks Scrabble Tournament.
Prior to the event, some 90 participants had entered the event.



West Berks Member attains Expert Status

As part of their ratings system, the Association of British Scrabble Players (ABSP) operates an honours system where players with consistently high ratings are recognised. This year, one of our members, David Sutton, was awarded Expert status.
Congratulations are given to David on his well deserved honour.



Patricia Wilson

It is with saddened heart that we report the death on 5th June 2009 of one of our stalwart members, Patricia Wilson. Known to all as “Trish” she was a much loved Scrabble player. Courageously and positively Trish fought her illness to the very end. We shall remember her for her cheerfulness, her giggles, her snippets of news on the latest happenings in the village, and by no means not least, her love of her family.
In January this year, our annual Scrabble Tournament raised £717.15 to go wholly to a local charity. Members had unanimously voted that all monies would be donated to The Duchess of Kent House. Trish, a patient in the hospice, presented the Club’s cheque to George Solly of Duchess of Kent House Charity.
We shall not forget Trish, and to this end we shall name one of our Club’s perpetual trophies “The Patricia Wilson Memorial Trophy for Best Improved League Player”.



West Berks member's success in the National Scrabble Championships

On Sunday 17th May 2009, 4 members of the club competed in the southern regional heat of the National Scrabble Championships. From this heat, 8 players progressed to the semi-final stage, which is to be held in Birmingham in September. The Club were pleased to have 2 members, David Sutton and Elizabeth Hull, who progressed to that stage. In the team event, the West Berks team finished the day in 4th place, an improvement on the 5th place finishes of previous years.



Raiding across the Severn Bridge

On Saturday 14th March 2009, 3 members of the club headed west down the M4 to play in the Cardiff Open. The tournament was split into a number of groups of 8 players with each players in a group playing all other members of the group. The best club performance was by Elizabeth Hull who won her division having won all but one of her games on the day.



A Busy Weekend in March

On Sunday 8th March 2009, 2 members of the club played in the Swindon Open Tournament with some success, David Sutton coming 6th in the top division. Meanwhile, in Anglesey, Iris Cornish was improving her rating in a weekend tournament.



West Berks Members Out in Force in Andover

On Sunday 22nd February 2009, some 7 members of the Club took part in the annual Hampshire Open Scrabble Congress, which was held in the John Hanson school in Andover. This represented the largest number of West Berks members competing in an external tournmament other than our own. The entrants were split into 4 divisions, with club representation in all divisions. In the final analysis, the best of the performances were from Melanie Beck and Ian Burn who came 5th in their respective divisions.



Scrabble Players Converge on Purley

On Saturday 17th January 2009, the club held its annual open tournament, the 9th such event in the Club's history. Some 94 players from across the country played 7 rounds of Scrabble, some 329 individual games, until the winners could be determined.
Chris Vicary, Jim Lyes and Carol Bartlett won divisions A, B and C respectively with Carol also taking the Best of Berkshire trophy for the best performance from a member of the Berkshire based clubs. Full results of the event are here.
The event also had some wide coverage in the local press and the following link contains the article which appeared in The Reading Evening Post.



Pat Spence Wins the Christmas Event

On Tuesday 16th December 2008, the club held its traditional internal handicap event. The basis of the event is that all people should have an equal chance of winning, a situation enabled by virtue of the fact that all players did not all start with a zero score. The better the player, then the larger the points deficit they were required to make up. At the end of the evening, Pat spence won the event beating Elizabeth Hull into second place by the closest of margins.



West Berks Members Success In Salisbury

On Sunday 12th October 2008, some 5 members of the Club took part in the annual Salisbury Open Scrabble tournament in the picturesque Wiltshire hamlet of Winterbourne Earles. The entrants were split into groups of 8, with each entrant playing every other member of their group. In the final analysis, Melanie Beck and Ian Burn came 2nd in their respective groups . Special mention should go to Melanie as this was her first competitive tournament.




Allan Simmons Wins The National Scrabble Championship

On Sunday 5th October, Allan Simmons beat Craig Beevers to become the National Scrabble Champion. More details can be found here. The National Scrabble Championships are held annually and organised by Mattel, the brand owner of Scrabble within the UK.


West Berks Members In Southend

On Saturday 4th October 2008, 2 members of the Club took part in the annual Open Scrabble tournament organised by the Hockley club on the outskirts of Southend. The final result made depressing reading with the pair coming 17th and 18th in a strong top division of 18 players.



West Berks Scrabble Club In The Media

Following on from an interview with Ian Burn, broadcast on BBC Radio Berkshire in May, a Scrabble article was pubished on the BBC web-site. This article can be found here.