Megan Birch has etched her name in Basingstoke Chess Club's history by becoming the first female player to win one of their two major trophies.

In the recently concluded Charles Henshaw Shield competition, the 17-year-old emerged victorious by beating David Long in the final.

The competition, which drew a record 24 entries, restricted participation to players with an ELO rating below 1600.

Megan, from Tadley attending Queen Mary's College, displayed exceptional strategic thinking, launching a kingside attack that ultimately secured her victory.

She is also the reigning Basingstoke Ladies champion and represented England as part of their under-18 B team last year.

She also secured the top girl player position at the Hampshire Chess Congress in 2023.

Adding to the club's celebratory mood is the phenomenal performance of their five league teams.

All teams currently hold top-two positions in their respective leagues, with three teams vying for the championship spot.

The club is inviting chess enthusiasts of all skill levels, from beginners to grandmasters, to participate in their free monthly chess mornings. For more information, visit