Chapter 1 Introduction

Chapter 1

1.1 Overview

This document is intended to be the standard source of information on organising Go playing, teaching and publicity. It is aimed mainly at the current state of Go in the British Isles, but is intended to be much more widely applicable.

The various chapters contain gleanings from many years of experience of Go organisation, but everyone has his own favourite ways of doing things, and anyone who feels that his preferred methods or ideas are missing, or are not covered adequately, should write to the BGA with suggestions, so that future editions can include the benefit of his experience as well.

Throughout, for brevity and convenience, a player is referred to as he, since the majority of players at present are male, despite the growing number of female players.

Material contained herein may be copied as long as it is done to further the interests of Go playing and is credited to the BGA.


This edition was compiled by Edwin Brady, and updates the previous edition, prepared by Tony Atkins. Thanks are due to Tony Atkins, Ian Davis, Geoff Kaniuk, Jenny Radcliffe, Paul Smith and Nick Wedd for their contributions and suggestions, and the many contributions (both direct and indirect!) from the gotalk mailing list. It was typeset using the LATEX document preparation system, and converted to HTML using the tex4ht system.

1.2 The British Go Association

The British Go Association (affiliated to the European Go Federation and to the International Go Federation) is a voluntary organisation with elected officials which exists to promote the game of Go within the British Isles. The BGA has existed for 50 years, and is actively involved in the organisation and co-ordination of tournaments. The BGA plays an active part in the European Go Federation (EGF), taking its turn to be the host to the annual European Go Congress.

Membership is open to all Go players on payment of a small annual subscription. Among the BGA's activities are the following:

  • The British Go Journal is distributed free to members and includes instructional articles as well as news items.
  • The BGA newsletter is distributed to members every two months, and includes recent news and details of forthcoming events.
  • The BGA website includes pages of news covering UK and European tournaments and events.

  • The BGA provides books, sets, and other supplies, at special members prices by post. There is a price list online.
  • A number of public-domain Go-related utilities, including Go-playing programs, are also made available on CD ROM, as a service to members.
  • The Association provides a game analysis service, help with putting on tournaments, and other services to members and clubs.
  • Diplomas are awarded to all those who reach dan strength, according to the grading system maintained by the European Go Federation.
  • The BGA offers free web space (up to 50kB) to BGA affiliated Go clubs.

  • Around 25 Go tournaments are held regularly in Britain each year. The BGA helps with the organisation of these, and lends Go sets and clocks for them.
  • The annual British Go Congress is held around Easter time, and the British Championship somewhat later in the year. Other tournaments are not run by the Association, but are assisted, and coordinated and advertised by it.

  • Each year a sponsor generously provides air tickets to allow British Go players to compete in the World Amateur Go Championship as representatives of Britain. There is also representation in European tournaments.

Last updated Tue Jul 28 2009. If you have any comments, please email the webmaster on web-master AT britgo DOT org.