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Alan Birnie RIP
It is with great regret that we have been informed that Alan Birnie of Irvine and Greenwood chess clubs passed away last night.

There is no further information about the circumstances to be had at this time.

We hope to give details of the funeral arrangements on here when that information becomes available.

Our thoughts and condolences are with Alan's family at this difficult time.

As one of Alan's many friends of long standing I am saddened by his passing. He was a keen, competitive chess player and fun to socialise with. He will be greatly missed.
Terrible news. It feels strange that only a week ago I was one of the many players socialising and having a laugh with Alan in the pub after a league match. He was a great guy that will be missed.
Alan and I were friends for over 30 years. This is a sad loss to his family, to me I have lost one of my best friends, and to chess in Ayrshire, where he proved to be a very competitive player. Rest in peace dear friend.
OMG, got friendly after a round 5 battle royale at Hamilton a few years ago, rescuing a draw which was no good to either of us.
Sad news, a very pleasant chap
I'm deeply saddened to hear of Alan's death. I have known Alan ever since I started playing chess some fifteen years ago and over the years we have had many encounters. It was something like one win each and upwards of ten draws, all games honestly fought and some of those draws I was fighting tooth and nail to stay in the game. At the board I always found Alan to be a gentleman and when I was younger I always appreciated the time he took going through our games and analysing the many side lines. He was one of my favourite opponents in the Ayrshire League.

Off the board I was lucky enough to be able to count him as a friend and we used to talk about our respective football teams fortunes. Alan was a big Jambos fan and I always enjoyed the banter with him as I would decry Killie (being an Ayr fan) and he’d decry the Hibees. I will miss Alan and Ayrshire Chess has lost one of its biggest characters.

My thoughts and prayers are with Alan’s family at this time.
Growing old is compulsory, growing up is optional!
I was shocked and stunned to hear of my friend Alan's passing. It was deeply upsetting news and I have taken a few days to come to terms with it and to consider an appropriate tribute to the great contribution he made to Ayrshire chess not only as a fiercely competitive player but as a guy who loved the social aspects of the game.
Alan, we will really miss you. I don't need to tell you that there will be plenty of your pals gathered to celebrate your life in the way you enjoyed the most, we will be having a good drink and a guid blether because I am sure that's what you would have wanted.

My thoughts are with Alan's family at this sad time.

Still finding this news hard to believe and come to terms with. We had some good times, back in the day. Chess was the common factor and we would analyse, work on games and discuss the merits of d4 v e4 and caro-kann v sicilian, for many an hour. All pre-computer days, so it was books and our own ideas (good or bad).

Over the board we has some good games in the early years pitting our rival strategies and openings against each other at Dreghorn Chess Club in the local community centre. Alan was always a better player than me and the results reflected that. The wins I did score against him were prized. We only played once in recent times and it was a bit of a tame draw, which I put down to his benevolence based on our long-standing friendship.

His love of the Jambos was sorely tested in 1986, (the year he dragged me along to the Scottish Cup semi-final, which Hearts won 1-0) when Hearts managed to lose the cup final and were minutes away from winning the league, only for Celtic to take the title courtesy of the Dundee player you weren't allowed to name scoring two late goals and St Mirren wearing Celtic strips for the day and conceding 5. It didn't stop us rolling out the pub at closing time and singing "Hearts, Hearts glorious Hearts" all the way down the Station Brae, at the top of our voices.

We both enjoyed the social aspect of chess in the 80's and a few beers at lunchtime during a congress was part of the fun. Alan was always good company and we had a laugh, when we played events around the country.

I have so many memories of Alan, most of which I'd forgotten and only his untimely passing have brought back to my mind. Thanks for the memories, the laughs and the friendship mate but I'm still not playing the Caro-Kann.

I hope there's a chess board where you are now and given your preponderance for time trouble, that your flag never falls.
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there will be a service for Alan at Holmsford Crematorium on 18th December at 12 noon. for map, postcode etc; <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""> ... l=uk&hl=en</a><!-- m -->
At the request of Alan's family and in accordance with Alan's own likes, no black ties to be worn, preferred is that mourners wear something in Hearts colours (maroon). Further detail is after crematorium there is a tea and drinks at Girdle Toll Bowling club ; <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""> ... e-4230577/</a><!-- m -->

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