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DEREK OLDBURY

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   In April of 2012, the OMOCH was contacted by Mr. Slava Gorin with a correction to the OMOCH Timeline regarding an entry on Derek Oldbury. At this time, Mr. Gorin revealed that he was preparing a biography on Oldbury. He then suggested we post this biography on the OMOCH site. Mr. Gorin has done extensive research, and the result is the text below. It was originally published on the OMOCH "ARTICLES" page, but has been updated considerably since then, so it was decided to create a tribute page to Oldbury. Also, Ken Lovell has donated three rare photos of Oldbury which he suggested to be used on the site. These are included in the tribute.     

THE
ONLINE MUSEUM OF CHECKERS HISTORY
PROUDLY PRESENTS
A
TRIBUTE TO
DEREK OLDBURY 
 

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE
oldburyvcohengiantboardadj.jpg

   ABOVE IS A PRESS PHOTOGRAPH OF DEREK OLDBURY , SEATED LEFT, PLAYING A GAME OF "GIANT DRAUGHTS" AGAINST ANOTHER BRITISH LEGEND, SAMUEL COHEN, SEATED RIGHT. THE DETAILS OF THE ENCOUNTER ARE UNKNOWN. THE PHOTO WAS SENT BY KEN LOVELL, WHO HAD TEMPORARY POSSESSION OF THIS, ALONG WITH SEVERAL OTHERS. KEN DID DIGITAL RESTORATION ON THESE PHOTOS AND ALLOWED THEM TO BE USED HERE AT THE OMOCH SITE AS PART OF A TRIBUTE TO OLDBURY. 

                                            Derek Edward Oldbury Biography

 

                                                        by Slava Gorin.

 

Derek Edward Oldbury (born 21 March 1924 at London (Hendon), died 9 July 1994 at Kingsker-swell) was a British Grandmaster at English draughts. He played chess first and was a champion for his county.

Since 1938 Derek was a Draughts composer. He turned to draughts some time before 1946. Married to Joan (1920-20.11.1980,nee White) in 1962. Derek & Joan were ACF 200 Club and Life Members. DEO, as they called him, was born a paraplegic and lived all his life in a wheel-chair. (Deo is Latin for God). Derek wrote 2 computer programs for playing draughts. Firstly, Checker Hustler, which took 6th place in the 1st Computer Olympiad in 1989 at London, and secondly, in collaboration with Adrian Millett, Checkermate, which took 3rd place in the 2nd Computer Olympiad in 1990 also at London. Derek's highest ACF rating was 2631 and the lowest was 2445 (in 1975). In 1979 Derek's rating was 2500 with the qualification as an International GM. He was a Life Member of the ACF, entering in1976, and an Honorary Life Member of the IDA. Since Sep 1963 up to 1982 Derek wasn't the EDA member (Liam Stephens).  Regarding Derek's occupation, GM Richard James Pask (b.1961) writes:  “I believe Derek bought and sold rare stamps for some time, but latterly was backed financially by John M. Napier (1905-1983) from Exeter". Derek, Joan and her twin sister, Elaine Beryl White (passed away on 7.10.1989) left an endowment (of $ 90,529.82) known as the Joan Oldbury Trust Fund which is used to fund the ACF GAYP Nationals and World GAYP Chanpionships. A current trustee for this Fund is Dr Richard Clare Beckwith. Derek was Scottish Open Champion in 1950; English Open Champion in 1953,1955,1957,1963; British Open Champion in 1956,1962,1988;  Irish Open Champion in 1978, 1982. In 1964 Derek played a drawn match with Eugene Frazier (1921-1991) 2-2-16. Eugene was the American 3-Move Champion in 1966.

In 1964 Derek was 5th at USA 3-Move. Derek was 2nd at the USA 3-Move National in 1974; 2nd at the USA GAYP National in 1981; 4th in the USA 11-Man National in 1974; 3-Move USA Champion in 1976; 11-Man Ballot Stake-Purse Champion in 1967, beating LaVerne G. Dibble (1936-2002) 6-2-7; 11-Man Ballot World Champion in 1974, beating GM Kenneth Maurice Grover (1908-1993) 6-2-9. Derek was the World GAYP Champion from 1976 to 1982. He beat GM Leo Levitt (b.1931) 1-1-22 at Glasgow KY in 1976 (Leo Levitt withdrew). He beat GM Elbert Lane Lowder (1932-2006) 7-2-10 at Dublin (Ireland) in 1979. GM Donald Morgan Lafferty (1933-1998) won the title from Derek in 1982 beating him 1-0-23. From 1991 up to his death Derek was the World 3-Move Champion. He won the title in a match with American GM Richard Hallett (b.1929) beating him 7-4-27 in Weston-Super-Mare. GM Marion Franklin Tinsley (1927-1995) won 9-1-24 from Derek in 1958 at London.

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE
oldburyvtinsleyadj.jpg
  ABOVE, ANOTHER OF THE KEN LOVELL RESTORED PHOTOS, THIS ONE FROM THE TINSLEY VS. OLDBURY 3-MOVE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH.

In 1965 GM Walter Oskar Fredrik Hellman(1916-1975) won 7-1-27 from DEO at Stamford CT. GM Richard Hallett won from Derek 4-3-13 in an 11-Man Ballot World Title Match in 1986 and drew 2-2-16 3-Move match with him in 1985. Master Richard Lee Fortman (1915-2008) who was the World Postal Champion (in 1980,1986 & 1990) beat DEO 5-3-16 in 8 games postal matches in 1987 & 1989. In 1992 Oldbury was the contender to GM Ronald King (b.1955,Barbados) for the World GAYP Title. The match was drawn 5-5-14 so King retained the title. In 1965 Derek played the IBM 7094 computer with Arthur Lee Samuel ( 1901-1990,USA) program and won all 4 games by mail. In 1966 he played 4 games against the Samuel Checkers program and won all of them. In 1982 he played 2 games versus Borcheck (Destiny Inc TX) and drew them both. In 1989 Chinook program won from Derek 2-0-3 in the 1st Computer Olympiad at London. Chinook had its 4-piece database then. In 1992 Derek played versus the Colossus programme by Martin Bryant(UK) and won overwhelming score 43-1-24! In 1994 Chinook, the strongest program ever, won from Derek 3-0-9. Chinook had a rating of 2816 (2814 according to some) at that time and was written by Jonathan Herbert Schaeffer (b.1957) and his team of Artificial Intelligence specialists.

Derek Edward Oldbury was estimated 10th best player in history by Richard Lee Fortman, 6th best one by Yunior Lopez and 7th best by GM Aleksandr Naumovich Moiseyev (b.1959).

Derek was the prolific author of books on draughts. His works include the following:

1. A Game of Draughts (1946-47, a journal).

2. Championship Draughts: Derek Oldbury V James Marshall for the British MatchChampionship: The Sturges Trophy & Gold Medal & F100 Subscription Prize-Money,played at Edinburgh, August 8th-10th and Bristol, August 13th-16th,1955. (1956, in co-authorship).

3. Checker Game Score (19??), 10 pages.

4. Championship Draughts: Derek Oldbury V Samuel Cohen for the English 3-Move Championship and Subscription F75 Prize-Money (1956, in co-authorship).

5. Frazier – Oldbury Non-Title Match Games: August 8th-12th (1964), 6 pages.

6. The Hand of D.E.O.: a selection of problems,critical positions and end-games (1947), 43 pages.

7. 1950: Scottish Draughts Championship, Aberdeen (1950, in co-authorship).

8. Move over, or how to win at Draughts (1957).

9. International Draughts and Checkers (1959, in co-authorship).

10. The Square World (1965,1966,1967).

11. World Checkers Championship : Hellman versus Oldbury (1965), limited of 478.

12. Checker Chiaroscuro (1966).

13. The Students' Encyclopaedia of Draughts (1978).

14. The Complete Encyclopaedia of Checkers in 6 volumes (1978-83).

On the Record: In 1958 the 5th game in London for the World Title between Dr Marion Tinsley (USA) and Derek Oldbury (UK) lasted for 7,5 hours. (The Guinness Book of World Records, 1988). The game was drawn.

Derek was cremated and buried at Torquay Cemetery on Thursday 14th July of 1994.

This biography was written on 22nd of December 2012.

Special thanks to John Brian Reade (UK) for preparing this work and Dave Jowsey (UK), crematorium attendant of Torquay Cemetery. Also Vadim Vasilenko (Russia, technical sciences candidate) for finding in 1998 the small text file about Derek and his Encyclopaedia.

Without the people named below it would not have been possible:

1.GM Richard Clare Beckwith (USA).

2.Martin Bryant, the Colossus draughts programmer (UK).

3.Edward 'Pal' Bucker (USA).

4. Ian Henry Caws (UK).

5. M Richard Lee Fortman (USA).

6. Jay Hinnershitz (USA).

7. Bob Newell (USA).

8. Nick McBride (UK).

9. Alan Millhone (USA)

10. Jim Loy(USA).

11. IGM Derek Edward Oldbury (UK).

12.GM Richard James Pask (UK).

13. John Brian Reade (UK).

14. Betty A Solomon, Derek's private secretary (UK).

15. IM William Stephens (Ireland).

16. Dr Jonathan Herbert Schaeffer (Canada).

17. Roberto Waldteufel, the Wyllie draughts programmer (UK).

18. GM Hugh G. Devlin (Ireland).

19. IM Lindus John Edwards (Wales).

Sites are used to:

1.The ACF www.usacheckers.com

2. Chinook programme ww.webdocs.cs.ualberta.ca/~chinook

3. The EDA www.englishdraughts.co.uk

4. North Carolina Checker Association www.nccheckers.org

5. Online Museum of Checkers History www.online-museum-of-checkers-history.com

6. Wyllie Checkers Program www.wylliedraughts.com

Derek and his family photographs:

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE
oldburyvtinsleyspectatorsadj.jpg
  THE OPENING MOVES OF THE TINSLEY VS. OLDBURY 3-MOVE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH. ANOTHER ONE OF THE KEN LOVELL RESTORED PHOTOS.
 
 
 
tinyderek.jpg
Tiny Derek
 
 
 
 
 
stone.jpg

                                 Elder brother of Derek, Victor Howard Edgar Oldbury

                                 (1921- 6.02.1946), Leading Aircraftsman, the husband

                                 of Eileen Phyllis Oldbury (Wigan, Lancashire).

                                 The Monument at the Wimborne Minster Cemetery.

                     

 

 

 

 

      

derekmom.jpg

Mother of Derek, Dorothy(Donsthia) Alice Edkins Kreutzberger Oldbury

               (1890 – 1978).

Dorothy was born in Dec 1890, at Epping (England) and burried at the Wynyard General Lawn Cemetery, Wynyard, Tasmania (Australia)

 

 

 

 

derekdad.jpg

          

                    

                       Father of Derek, Howard Edward Oldbury (1890 – 26.09.1940),

                       2nd husband to Derek's mother, killed while bombing at WW2.

 

 

 

 

derekstone.jpg

                                 Derek & Joan Oldbury Monument at the Torquay Cemetery.

Copyright by Slava Gorin (Russian Federation) 1998 – 2013.

 
 
 
WE HOPE YOU HAVE ENJOYED
A
TRIBUTE TO
DEREK OLDBURY

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