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Get set to get your game on as chess takes over Chatswood in April and May with ‘Checkmate Chatswood’.

Coinciding with the famed Sydney Comedy Festival, Checkmate Chatswood will see visitors grab their best selfie with supersized inflatable chess pieces dotted around the CBD, learn killer strategies at chess workshops, or test their skills at a tournament. Enjoy a simultaneous chess display where a champion takes on multiple players at once. Join in the fun and compete with friends in giant chess or compete with a champion in fast-paced lightning chess. 

Willoughby Mayor Tanya Taylor says of the event: “We are thrilled to be welcoming chess back to Chatswood. Chess has more than 100 years of history in Chatswood. The Chatswood Chess Club (now called Norths Chess Club) has been operating since 1908. The earliest venue was the School of Arts on Victoria Avenue, Chatswood, now the site of The Concourse. It is exhilarating to be bringing the game back to the area. There is something for everyone, whether you play or not!”. 

Checkmate Chatswood runs in Chatswood CBD from the 22 April to the 19 May with a range of free and paid events: 

Checkmate Chatswood Activities:

Chess Sculptures (main image above)

Grab your camera and venture out to Chatswood CBD as chess takes over. Spot giant inflatable chess pieces: Take a selfie with the King or Queen, drop your best knight pose or rule the ‘rook’. Can you find all 18 pieces across the CBD? It’s an adventure you won’t want to miss!

All ages.

Date: 22 April to 19 May

Location: Chatswood CBD

Cost: Free


Interactive Giant Chess Set

Challenge your friends and family! A giant outdoor chess set will be available for the public to test their skills on. Don’t be a ‘stalemate’ – head to The Concourse and have fun. Who will be crowned the winner? The chess set will be available to play at various times during the school holidays, weekends and evenings.

All ages.

Date: 22 April to 19 May, various times during the school holidays, weekends and evenings

Location: The Concourse

Cost: Free


School Holiday Chess Workshops

Are you prepared for battle? Learn how to play chess these school holidays at the Chatswood Library. Beginner players will learn the basics like how each piece works and basic checkmate strategy. Those who are more experienced can pick up tactics and traps to outwit their opponents.  

Ages 5 – 12.

Date: 22 to 24 April, 1.30pm to 3.30pm

Location: Creator Space, Chatswood Library

Cost: $20, registration essential (please click here)


NSW Junior Chess League Tournament

Compete with other young chess players at this NSW Junior Chess League tournament. Situated in the inspiring and naturally lit foyer of The Concourse, players aged 5 – 17 can be involved in a NSWJCL rated tournament, meet likeminded players and win prizes.

Ages 5 – 17.

Date: 28 April, 1pm to 4pm

Location: The Concourse Foyer

Cost: $25, registration and membership of the NSW Junior Chess League essential.


Rapid Chess 

Could you beat a chess expert? Get up close and personal with a champion and play a game of rapid chess. Bring your A-game, grab your family and friends to cheer you on and don’t forget to take a picture to commemorate the moment. Don’t miss this chance to test your skills. 

All ages

Date: 4 May, 11am to 2pm

Location: The Concourse

Cost: Free 


Simultaneous Chess Display

See a chess master in action as they compete with multiple players at once. With over 20 boards set up next to the grand staircase at The Concourse, be treated to a rare display of chess mastery. As seen in the Queen’s Gambit, observe a champion simultaneously take on multiple players at the same time.   

All ages.

Date: 11 May, 11am start

Location: The Concourse Staircase

Cost: Free


NSW Chess Association ‘Allegro’ Tournament

In this ACF and FIDE rated ‘allegro’ tournament, play seven 30-minute rounds of chess. Compete to win prizes, and be part of an esteemed event in the inspiring and naturally lit foyer of The Concourse. 

Ages 5+

Date: 19 May, 10.30am to 4pm

Location: The Concourse Foyer

Cost: $25, registration and membership of the NSW Chess Association essential.


Check out the website for more details www.visitchatswood.com.au