Championship S & B

Posted on Categories Announcement
There will be a meeting for crossword setters and solvers at The George, Borough High Street, Southwark, London, SE1 1NH, coinciding with the annual Times Crossword Championship. The meeting will begin at 11:00 am on Saturday 22nd October 2016, which is when The George opens, and continue until late into the evening.

It is hoped that a number of the setters from the national newspapers will put in an appearance. There should also be a cross-section of bloggers and readers from Big Dave’s Crossword Blog, Times for the Times and Fifteensquared. And last, but by no means least, competitors in the Times Crossword Championship will be popping in between the semi-finals and finals of the competition – the winner to celebrate and the rest to drown their sorrows.

If you’ve never been before, this is a very friendly function and provides the opportunity to meet other like-minded people.

28 comments on “Championship S & B”

  1. Sad that I will not see you this year but I am going to be suffering Disneyworld with my daughter in a ‘Finding Nemo’ room – sleeping in a bed shaped like a fish – so spare a thought for me!

    Can you ask the Times crew if they can fix the website. Sounds like a lot of people cannot get on without hitting “null object”.

    Have fun!

    1. I’ve told the editor about the website problems – unfortunately it’s all meant that I haven’t been able to sort out my blog at all yet. Expect it later in the day though.

      I will be around on the 22nd, unless I’ve been hounded from the community for persistent inability to get my blogs done on time, that is…

      1. Thanks for letting the editor know about the site gremlins V. It’s annoying and I was just wondering whether to invest in a call from NYC to whoever is picking up the phone the other end.
  2. As a regular traveller on Southeastern I know it pays to check weekend arrangements whilst London Bridge is being rebuilt.
    Please note there appear to be no trains to London Bridge (et al) the whole weekend (22-23/10) from the SE.
    I often get stuck in the SE but this would be unfortunate if you were competing. David
    1. As someone who was planning to get to London Bridge from Kidbrooke on a Southeastern Train… thanks for the heads up!
      1. Looking again at Journey Planner, there now appear to be trains stopping at London Bridge on Saturday. The previous information had them all stopping at New Cross (from my neck of the woods).
        So a pint at The George is back on the agenda. David
  3. Sadly won’t be there this year, but best of luck to all competitors, especially our contingent of TfTT regulars. (Go, Sotira!)
    Hope someone is able to post the results here
  4. I would very much like to join you but I am in Mozambique for 2 weeks (which coincidentally is the time it would take me to complete the first round of crosswords probably).
  5. I’ll be there after we’ve had the results from the first prelim and again after the final.
    1. There used to be, up until 2000 when they stopped holding the championships. When they restarted it in 2006 it was became three qualifying puzzles in the paper (of which you only need to submit one) followed by the semi-finals and final all on one day for those who submitted the quickest times.
      1. I’m pretty sure the last championship with proper regional finals was 1998 – I’ve got a nice decanter for winning the London A final, though I’m not 100% sure that there were the usual 6 regionals that year. 1997 was an economy version – just one solving session in the Royal Festival Hall foyer, with a fair amount of noise. 1999 was a one-day event with a big “semi-final” in the morning and the final in the afternoon. From memory, 2000 had London finals (or maybe one London final) plus another somewhere like Leeds or Manchester, in the short-lived sponsorship from (including motor show style dolly birds, which made for some bizarre photos)

        Unless a very generous fairy godmother sponsor magically appears, I doubt the regionals will be seen again. One good thing about them in pre-internet days was that solvers of various levels got the chance to meet up and talk with other crossword nuts. Now we can do that every day on sites like this. And some of the regional support was a bit weak – the two London ones would have nearly 300 in each (after an eliminator to trim them down), but the one time I went to Birmingham, there were minor celebrations when the 121st person checked in, meaning that three contestants would qualify. After him or her, there only four more turned up.

        1. There was certainly a 2000 Wordcross sponsored regional final in Birmingham, I was 3rd and somewhere there are pictures of me being presented with whatever the prize was by yellow-sashed lovelies.
          I think the final that year was in the Covent Garden area but I suspect that you have more reason to remember where than I have Peter.
          The ‘provincial’ regional finals were great social events as many of us there yesterday will attest. In addition the requirement to be in the first 2 or 3 tended to make reaching the final a trickier challenge.

          Simon Chillingworth

          1. 2000 final was in the Royal Opera House – in the “crush bar” I think. It’s almost certainly not there any more, as the place has been revamped.
  6. Bummed that I was in London last weekend and in the US today. It’s a little late, but best luck to all the team.
  7. Hello – I managed ( I think) to complete all three puzzles in my round but wasn’t amongst the “Speedy 12”! Are the timings published anywhere? I’d quite like to know if I came close – I’d finished long before the fire alarms…!


    Dave (Tyler) (aka Meek)

    1. Dave you came 21st, so yes and well done on free entry for next year. I’m sure the full results will appear inth e next few hours


      1. I’m not sure you should be congratulating someone who got stuck on “A rainy day” for quite as long as I did! Thanks for letting me know though… I’ve done better, I’ve done worse!
    2. I believe I finished in about 27 minutes in the third prelims – good enough for third place. I actually should have spent more time checking but looked up, saw 33 minutes on the clock, and panicked – not realising it was counting down, not up!
        1. Er, I have no idea. The first prelims, in the morning. (Lay off the booze, Verlaine…)
  8. When’s the next London meetup going to be, then? I feel we should get more regular, am I alone in this?

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