BARGAIN-HUNTERS who know their Benko gambit from their Sicilian defence have created a cash windfall for a charity shop.
Staff at the Oxfam store at Market Walk have seen a surprise goldrush following the donation of around 140 chess books on Saturday.
The sports and games section was quickly dominated by the new titles and word began to spread.
News of the gift quickly reached local fans of the game and two thirds of the titles have now been snapped up – netting the charity £500 so far.
Titles include “Sicilian Accelerated Dragons” and “Starting Out: The King’s Indian” – works sure to get the beginner and the expert on the top of their games.
Branch manager Adrian Hughes told The Examiner that the gift came as a total surprise for staff.
He said: “It was Saturday morning and the son of the donor dropped in and left the books.
“It was a member of the Huddersfield Chess Club who wanted to remain anonymous.
“According to one of the volunteers an advert did go up on the website used by the club, so I think people knew they were there pretty quickly.
“It’s been fantastic for us because not only did he give us such a brilliant gift, he also did our publicity for us and generated all of the interest.”
The collection has some way to go to match the immense archive of the English Chess Federation in Hastings, which is open to the public.
That collection has been swelled by years of bequests and donations from the biggest names in the game – so Huddersfield’s Oxfam shop is not quite up there yet.
Manager Adrian added: “From time to time we do get a number of books on a certain theme but not usually chess books, although we do have a lot of requests for them.
“When we receive large amounts of books it’s usually from older donors who have been clearing out their collections.
“Sometimes it’s even professors from the university who are clearing out their old politics or history books.
“You do hear of unusual bulk donations in other stores, but we’ve definitely had nothing like this.
“So far it’s generated around £500 in quite a short period of time, so that’s excellent news for us.”