THE EUROPEAN School Chess Championships, coming to Limerick next June, will make history by being the first to be held in Ireland.
The tournament could see between 300 and 400 young chess players from across Europe converge on Limerick for the event, which will take place in the University of Limerick from May 30 to June 8, 2024.
The Irish Chess Union (ICU) won the bid to host this major chess tournament against four other countries, along with support from UL, Limerick City and County Council, Failte Ireland, and the Shannon Region Conference and Sports Bureau.
Over 300 talented children, aged between 5 and 16 years, from all corners of Europe are anticipated to participate in the European School Chess Championships, joined by family, coaches, and supporters. The games will be broadcast live to spectators around the world on Twitch and elsewhere online.
Limerick as host city is fitting as it’s home to Diana Mirza who claimed the World Schools Under-17 Chess Championship in 2017.
Welcoming the announcement on behalf of Limerick City and County, Cllr Joe Pond said: “The University of Limerick, renowned for its state-of-the-art facilities and commitment to excellence in education, will provide the perfect setting to ignite the minds of these young chess players.”
“I would like to congratulate the Irish Chess Union on winning the bid and their appreciation for the assets and facilities that Limerick has to offer to international tournaments.”
Desmond Beatty, Chairperson of the Irish Chess Union, added: “We are delighted to announce that the European School Chess Championships will take place in Ireland for the first time.”
“Building on the success of both Glorney Cup and Chessmates internationals, this is a remarkable opportunity for us to showcase Ireland’s thriving chess community, promote the growth of the game, and provide an unforgettable experience for participants and spectators alike.”
“This is a first for Ireland, but hopefully not the last. I encourage local people and businesses to get behind this event and actively support these bright young minds. There will be opportunities to support the overall tournament and individual students,” he concluded.