Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Richard Currie

It is with great sadness that we inform you that Richard Currie passed away peacefully in his sleep on Saturday 19th September at the Phyllis Tuckwell hospice. His parents, Erica and Douglas, were with him.

Richard was the favourite bridge partner of many and not just of members at Farnham Bridge Club. Those who were privileged to share a part of his short life have been given the opportunity to know a generous, kind man with a large heart and great sense of humour, who unstintingly gave of himself in every way. He was a 'star' both at and away from the bridge table who looked after his bridge playing partners, team mates and opponents with the same selfless and helpful attitude. Both he and his partner were notorious for their rendition of EHAA which put their opponents playing skills to the test - a system which I am sure many will be pleased to see the back of!

Those who played regularly with him had the unique opportunity of sharing in some of his successes whilst following others with interest and no-one can replace him in our hearts.

Richard's funeral service will be held at St Thomas-on-the-Bourne church, Frensham Road, Farnham GU9 8HA on Monday 5th October at 12 noon. There will be a private cremation for family only later in the day.

Monday, 28 September 2009

AGM Nominations

The following are the nominations for the AGM on the 7th October 2009.

Nominations received as at 16th September 2009 (closing date).


Twelve candidates have been nominated and have agreed to stand. As such, there will need to be an election for the ten positions available.
  • Sally Bugden
  • John Carter
  • Jeremy Dhondy
  • Suzanne Gill
  • Michael Hill
  • Graham Jepson
  • Jeff Morris
  • Alan Nelson
  • Malcolm Oliver
  • Andrew Petrie
  • Martin Pool
  • Peter Stocken


  • Sally Bugden – Chairman
  • Andrew Petrie – Vice-Chairman
  • Michael Hill – Treasurer

Tournament Committee

The election this year is for two positions serving a three year term of office expiring in 2012 – no election required.
  • Alan Nelson
  • Addis Page

Selection Committee

The election this year is for two positions serving a three year term of office expiring in 2012.
  • Heather Bakhshi
  • Peter Baxter
  • Sally Brock
  • David Muller

Laws & Ethics Committee

The election this year is for two positions serving a three year term of office expiring in 2012 – no election required.
  • Mike Amos
  • Jeremy Dhondy

Thursday, 17 September 2009


Congratulations to the following TD’s who have been successfully promoted:

Gordon Rainsford to become a National Tournament Director.

David Stevenson to become a National Tournament Director.

Neil Morley to be promoted to a National Tournament Director.

Martin Lee to be promoted to a Senior Congress Tournament Director.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

England are World Champions!

England are World Champions! After a roller coaster ride of a match, where they were down by 60 IMPs after one set, fought back brilliantly to lead by 30 IMPs after five sets and had to face an exciting late rally by Poland, England emerged victorious by 187 IMPs to 163.67.

Congratulations to all the team: Gunnar Hallberg and John Holland, David Price and Colin Simpson, Ross Harper and Paul Hackett and NPC Peter Baxter.

In the Venice Cup Final, China beat USA. In the Bermuda Bowl Final, USA beat Italy.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

England Players Scoop IBPA Prizes

England players have taken centre stage at the prestigious International Bridge Press Association’s 2009 Awards Ceremony.

Michelle Brunner won the Gidwani Family Trust Defence of the Year Award, for a defence reported in the IBPA Bulletin by Maureen Hiron, The Independent Bridge Columnist.

Stuart and Gerald Tredinnick won the Precision Best Bid Hand of the Year Award, for an auction reported by Heather Dhondy in her 2008 Gold Cup article, published in English Bridge.

Well done to all players and journalists concerned!

You can find all the deals in the São Paulo Bulletins:

Roy Absalom (1918 - 2009)

Roy Absalom was born in Abercarn. Very shortly after, the family moved a couple of miles down the road to the mining village of Cwmcarn, in what was Monmouthshire. His parents did not want him to become a miner like his father, so urged him to get a good education. His father died at the age of 53 when Roy was 16. A year later his mother encouraged him to go to work in London with a scheme run by the government where his board and lodging were provided plus 5s a week. As soon as he was earning, he started sending money back to his mother in South Wales.

Roy started work before the war at Mosers in London, which became Nettlefolds & Mosers and later still became GKN. He returned to the company after the war, and worked there until taking early retirement at 55, when the company moved to Bootle. He studied to become a Chartered Secretary and by the time he retired he was the Company Secretary and a Director.

During the war he travelled out to Palestine on a troop ship via South Africa and because he had to have an operation on his knee he was not sent into action in Italy. He ended the war having spent four years in Palestine and without hearing a shot fired!

While he was in Palestine he learnt to play bridge, which was a game he loved for the rest of his life. He was a former Chairman of the British Bridge League and Vice-President of the EBU. He went to Israel with young international players and took part in several exchanges between Croydon and Arnhem. He was the Chairman of the Croydon Bridge Congress for several years.

Roy was a very keen sportsman, enjoying running, hockey and tennis in his younger years and then moving on to golf. His love of rugby was well known in the family and he would always support Wales when they were playing. Tennis was very important, as he met his wife, Beryl, at a whist match run by the tennis club to which they both belonged. They married on 1st October 1949, and had two daughters and three sons. Roy was devoted to his family and up until the time he died Beryl used to test him to make sure he could remember the names of all his grandchildren – ten of them. He had four great grandchildren, and knew that a fifth one was on the way.

Roy suffered from Parkinson's Disease for almost thirty years but in all this time he was never heard to complain about it. He was always cheerful, he kept his interest in the activities of others and his sense of humour never left him. A few months ago he gently joked that he was ‘a fine figure of a man’. Maybe more than he knew, he really was. He will be greatly missed.

The funeral will take place on Monday 14th September, 11.30am at Croydon Crematorium, Thornton Road (A23).

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

BingoLotto Returns

Sports and recreation clubs (including EBU affilliated clubs) across the UK are set to benefit from the launch of an interactive TV game, BingoLotto. Participants will be able to buy a £2 Gamecard at the check-outs at every Tesco store throughout Britain and each Gamecard will raise 40 pence for good causes. The TV game, hosted by Ulrika Jonsson, will air weekly on Virgin 1 every Sunday evening starting on 13 September.

The BingoLotto TV game has run in Sweden since 1991 where it has raised just under £1bn for charities and sports organisations. At least 20% from each Gamecard sold in Great Britain will be distributed to sport, recreation and voluntary projects up and down the country through CCPR. Profits will be distributed to the governing and representative bodies of sport and recreation, including the English Bridge Union.

Tim Lamb, CCPR chief executive, believes the investment distributed to CCPR members can make a big difference to community sport and recreation:

“It is CCPR’s role to protect, promote and provide for its members, their clubs and participants and BingoLotto proceeds have the potential to contribute to all three of our aims. The financial environment for clubs is still very tough and this new funding stream will hopefully give them a much-needed boost.”

Tickets at all Tesco stores will be on sale from 7 September 2009.

For further details of the scheme, visit

Update: Unfortunately BingoLotto has put its plans on hold and has stopped selling game cards. Read the press release for more information.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Peter Czerniewski (1949-2009)

Peter Czerniewski was one of the most successful English players of the last three decades. He died on August 29th 2009 at the age of just 60 after losing a two-year battle against cancer.

Peter was born in West Wales of Polish parents but, although he represented Wales as a junior at chess, did not start playing bridge seriously until he was at university in 1968-1970 (Jesus College, Oxford). He played in the ’Varsity Matches of 1969 and 1970 but this was just the start of a distinguished career in competitive bridge. He represented Great Britain in the Common Market Championships of 1987, winning a Gold Medal. He played for England in the Camrose in 1988 with his first regular partner (Barry Rigal) and subsequently in 1996 (with David Price) and most recently in 2009 with Ian Panto, winning the trophy for England.

He has won the Gold Cup, Crockfords Cup, The Spring Fours (three times), the Tollemache (three times), the Lederer (twice), the Brighton 4 Star Teams (twice) and the Grand Masters’ Pairs. He was also a successful rubber bridge player, respected (and feared) at TGRs and other London clubs.

These successes lay alongside his working life as a designer and implementer of computer systems for British Aerospace and other major international corporations.

Peter was a man of great charm who loved, and was loved by, his family and who naturally made friends throughout the bridge world. He had a great intellect and a mind which worked considerably faster than most people’s. Come to think of it, he also had a body which worked faster than most people’s! He was a keen marathon runner and completed an astonishing fifteen marathons during his lifetime, recording a best time of under three hours.

After his retirement in 2007, he had the time to start playing bridge seriously again. He represented England in the Senior Camrose in 2008 (winner) and 2009. He finished in third place in the first division of the EBU Premier League in 2008.

On a personal note, Peter has been my good friend for nearly thirty-five years. I learnt about his illness in the summer of 2008 and have been closely involved with his active bridge life of the past fifteen months. In June 2008 I was a member of the England Senior team in the European Championships in Pau, France, for which Peter was a dedicated NPC. In October 2008, Peter and I were both playing members of the English Seniors team which reached the quarter-final of the World Mind Sports Olympiad in Beijing. I was his NPC for his successful performance for England in the Camrose in January 2009 and we played together in the Schapiro Spring Foursomes in May of this year. Finally, as his swansong, he partnered me in the Brighton Pairs on August 14th until, racked with pain and the side effects of powerful medication, Peter was forced to withdraw. He died peacefully two weeks later surrounded by his family.

Peter lived in North London and is survived by his loving and devoted wife Pam and his two children, Alexandra (22) and Christof (20). He will be sorely missed by them and all in the bridge world who knew him.

Chris Dixon
31st August 2009


Peter Czerniewski’s Life will be remembered at:

St Marylebone Crematorium
East End Road
East Finchley
N2 0RZ

on Thursday September 10th at 3pm.

English Bridge Internationals are invited to wear England Team Uniform.

More memories will be shared afterwards at 9 Ella Road, London N8 9EL

There will be a collection for Marie Curie & St John’s Hospice and donations are welcome at this web address to donate for Peter’s daughter, Alexandra, who will be running a marathon in her father’s memory.