Tony Goddard dies aged 69

I heard the sad news yesterday evening that Tony Goddard has been found dead in his flat. Tony played several games of chess for Nomads in 2013. He was a well-known Sheffield character, a highly intelligent man and a complex individual. Tony was an extremely strong Go (Wei Qi) player who had played many times at an international level. In 2008 he represented Great Britain at the Beijing World Mind Sports Games.
Although I’d known Tony well since 2003, it was upon his return from Beijing that he and I began to regularly play Xiang Qi (Chinese Chess). Tony even wrote a computer program that played Xiang Qi which he demonstrated to the public at Access Space, Sheffield.
Tony was a mathematician, something of an historian and a linguist. His view of the world was thoughtful and often nuanced. His dry wit was legendary, as was his inability to suffer fools gladly.
Antony Goddard 1947 - 2017
As a younger man he had worked as a computer programmer in many countries, including the USA, Saudi Arabia and Thailand. He had travelled in Iran and Afghanistan in the 1970s. He was something of a raconteur and had a wealth of stories with which he delighted audiences. To the dismay of his employers and other ex-pats Tony said he always seemed to prefer the company of the locals whilst abroad, often going native. The adventure he recalled to me of his time in a Washington ghetto was always my favourite.

Tony ate with chopsticks and loved cats. He enjoyed a good smoke and an occasional glass of wine. A man with a good heart, and a fine mind, he will be missed by those who knew him.

Steve Withington

Tony Goddard’s website

5 thoughts on “Tony Goddard dies aged 69”

  1. I didn’t know Tony very well but he did play once for my A Team back in 2013. Sad to hear of his passing – a character for sure in a World increasingly devoid of them.

    1. I remember Tony Goddard from working with him in the steel industry in Sheffield in the seventies. Tony was a mathematician and computer programmer. He played chess but was also European GO Champion. An eccentric but gentle man. RIP

  2. I met Tony Goddard just a few times at Go tournaments. Since he’d once founded a club in my home town, I was anxious to know if he had kept in touch with any of the old players there. I was disappointed to learn that he had not, but I was not disappointed to meet him. Tony was a great guy, very sharp and interesting opinions on life and the game. Wish that he’d played some more Go in the UK tournament scene. Great guy, great life.

  3. Sorry to hear that Tony has passed on. He was in his third year at Cambridge, when I and a number of other ‘first years’ were introduced to Go. What an impressive mind.

  4. those of you that knew Tony don’t need me to describe him; just adding my name to the list of people that remember his exceptional intellect and sincere character, one often underestimated and misunderstood.

    one of my favorite memories is when i once asked him his thoughts on the most efficient way to capture the energy of the sun – his answer: “grow wood and burn it!” 🙂

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