Thursday 15 December 2011

England win silver at World Mind Games

The England ladies won a silver medal at the World Mind Games invitational event in Beijing, losing to USA in the final. Well done to Sally Brock, Nicola Smith, Heather Dhondy, Nevena Senior, Susan Stockdale and Fiona Brown.

Nicola Smith also won silver in the Individual event.

Sunday 11 December 2011

Free EBU Sims - December 11

Last month was our trial of the new Sim Pairs software. We were very pleased to have 100 clubs sign up and hope that this will put the system through its paces! Results and commentary booklets are available at the links below. Players are also welcome to share stories of the evening and make comments on our Google+ page or on Facebook.

Saturday 10 December 2011

Gold Cup - 2011

Congratulations to the Peter Lee team, who have won the 2011 BGB Gold Cup. Peter Lee, Frances Hinden, Jeffrey Allerton, Graham Osborne, John Howard and Andy Bowles beat Alexander Allfrey, Andrew Robson, David Gold, Tony Forrester, Peter Crouch and Derek Patterson by 126-100 IMPs.

Photo: Shireen Mohandes

Thursday 1 December 2011

NICKO winners 2011

Congratulations to David Jones, Steve Green, Garry Watson and Martin Jones for winning the 2010/11 National Inter Club Knockout at the weekend. They beat Manchester in the final. This is the fifth time that the team has won the NICKO.

Monday 21 November 2011

Lords V Commons 2011

"The 37th match between the House of Commons and the House of Lords for the Jack Perry Trophy was held at the Portland Club, London last Friday. The Commons were depleted as the last general election had seen retirements and defeats for several MPs, but they came out fighting and had a useful lead at the halfway stage.

A second half revival saw the Lords run out winners and increase their lead in the series to 20-17.

The match, sponsored each year by Stephen Perry and London Export features a trophy for the best bid, played or defended hand. The Anthony Berry Trophy, judged by EBU Vice-President Tony Priday. who attended the very first match, was won by Baroness Byford for her bidding to an excellent 6D, played with skill."

Lords Team: Lord Skelmersdale, Baroness Oppenheim-Barnes, Lord Harrison, Baroness Billingham, Lord May of Oxford, Baroness Henig (Captain), Earl of Caithness, and Baroness Byford. Well done to them.

Report by Jeremy Dhondy. The match was sponsored by Stephen Perry of London Export Ltd in memory of his father Jack whose name is on the match trophy.

Thursday 13 October 2011

AGM 2011 results

The Annual General Meeting of the English Bridge Union took place on 5 October in London.

Election of directors

Two candidates were nominated and have agreed to stand. As such, there was no need for an election for the eight positions available.

Directors elected:
Sally Bugden
Heather Dhondy
Jeremy Dhondy
Val Gibson (newly elected)
Michael Hill
Graham Jepson
Ian Payn (newly elected)
Andrew Petrie

There being no other candidates for the roles, the following remained in their positions:

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

Laws & Ethics Committee
Three nominations were received for the two vacancies, so an election was required.

Congratulations to David Burn and Martin Pool who serve for a three year term of office, expiring in 2014.

Tournament Committee
Three nominations were received, for three places, so no election required:
Brian Crack (re-elected)
Paul Hackett (re-elected)
Ian Payn (newly elected)

Mr Hackett and Mr Payn serve for a three year term of office, expiring in 2014, and Mr Crack for two years, expiring in 2013.

Selection Committee
Five nominations were received, for four places, so an election was required.

Congratulations to Tom Townsend, Simon Cochemé and Nick Smith who serve for a three year term of office, expiring in 2014, and Heather Bakhshi who serves for a one year term of office, expiring in 2012.

Thursday 15 September 2011

Nominations for AGM

Nominations for the AGM on the 5th October 2011

Nominations received as at 14th September 2011 (closing date)

Two candidates have been nominated and have agreed to stand. As such, there will be no need for an election for the eight positions available.

Sally Bugden
Heather Dhondy
Jeremy Dhondy
Val Gibson (newly elected)
Michael Hill
Graham Jepson
Ian Payn (newly elected)
Andrew Petrie

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

Tournament Committee – 3 positions

Three nominations have been received for the three vacancies. Although there is no requirement for an election, a vote is required to ascertain the term of office for each nominee. Two are required for a three year term of office expiring in 2014, and one for a two year term of office expiring in 2013.
Brian Crack (re-elected)
Paul Hackett (re-elected)
Ian Payn (newly elected)

Selection Committee – 4 positions

Five nominations have been received for the four vacancies therefore an election will take place. The top three successful candidates will be elected for a three year term of office expiring in 2014; with the fourth successful candidate being elected for a one year term of office expiring in 2012.

Heather Bakhshi
Richard Bowdery
Simon Cochemé
Nick Smith
Tom Townsend

Laws & Ethics Committee - 2 positions

Three nominations have been received for the two vacancies therefore an election will take place. The top two successful candidates will be elected for a three year term of office expiring in 2014;

David Burn
Martin Pool
David Stevenson

Tuesday 17 May 2011

National Final of County Teams of 8 winners 2011

The national final of County Teams of 8 winners will be taking place on Sunday 10th July 2011 at the West Midlands Bridge Club, Solihull.


12.00 - Coffee and tea
12.30 - Bridge starts
15.30 - Meal
19.15 - Finish

There will be 48 Boards.


Wednesday 9 March 2011

Changes to the EBU Board

Ian Payn
We are delighted to welcome Ian Payn to the Board of the EBU. Ian has agreed to take up the role of Board Director responsible for education. Ian has extensive skills in medium and long term business planning and implementation of strategy. He also has a wealth of experience in the world of duplicate bridge; he is on the committee of the London Metropolitan Bridge Association and was previously Chairman of the Young Chelsea Bridge Club; He is currently Chief Operations Officer of Charter Chambers in London.

Suzanne Gill
We are sorry to say goodbye to Suzanne who is retiring from the Board to arrange her emigration to Australia to be with her daughter. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Suzanne, who has made a valuable contribution to the work of the EBU by chairing the Education Working Group. This involved organising the county education research project which culminated in a report presented to the Board in January 2011. We wish Suzanne very good luck with her new life in Australia.

Tuesday 8 March 2011

Bill McCarthy

Bill McCarthy lost his fight against cancer passing away peacefully on Sunday 27th February. Bill was very much a family man and his main hobby was Bridge.

Bill was an active member of Thame, Aylesbury and Wallingford clubs.

He served for several years on the Oxfordshire Bridge Association and was Competition Secretary for several years.

Bill was a County Director and was always ready to help run charity events.

He was a member of Thame Club for over 17 years and was secretary for many of these. His knowledge of bridge movements was legendary and he developed many of these for local clubs.

In 2010 he was awarded the Dimmie Fleming award by the EBU for services to Bridge, an achievement of which he was very proud.
Bill was one of that rare breed of unsung heroes and will be missed by all of his friends.

Bill was first and foremost a family man and was extremely proud of his 5 children and numerous grand-children. He regularly went on bridge holidays with his wife, Freda.

I was proud to have known Bill as a friend and bridge partner. Thank you Bill. You will always be in our memories.

Bob Kingshott

Tuesday 1 March 2011

Charitable status for English bridge club

The Charity Commission has recently made the ground-breaking decision to award charitable status to a bridge club in Hitchin, Hertfordshire. The Charity Commission stated that: “sport has often been used to advance charitable aims but, following a change in the law introduced by the Charities Act 2006, it is now charitable to advance amateur sports or games, which promote health by involving physical or mental skill or exertion.”

The charitable purposes of Hitchin Bridge Club are :

· The advancement of amateur sport by promoting the game of bridge for the benefit of the residents of Hitchin and the surrounding area.

· The provision of facilities for the learning, teaching and playing of bridge for the benefit of the residents of Hitchin and the surrounding area with the object of improving conditions of life.

Hitchin Bridge Club was recognised as being established for exclusively charitable aims for the public benefit in advancing amateur sport and providing recreational facilities. The club was registered as charity number 1140362.

Recent research has proven that undertaking regular mental activity such as playing bridge can significantly lower the risk of developing forms of dementia in our older population1. Additionally, research shows that social interaction amongst the elderly can stave off cognitive decline. Playing bridge has also been proven to benefit school pupils, not only in their education but in later years when they have more time available for a leisure pursuit. The game provides both high level mental stimulation and social engagement.

The President and founder of Hitchin Bridge Club, Mrs Margaret Eddleston said: “I am really pleased about the decision of the Charity Commission. The club wishes to help more people learn to play bridge and to reap the benefits from regular mental stimulation and companionship it provides. Recognition that bridge is a sport of the mind and its importance to the mental health and well being of players by the Charity Commission is very welcome. With the benefit of charitable status the club can now concentrate on providing a new community building for the residents of Hitchin which will provide modern facilities for playing the sport and a wide range of other community activities”.

The bridge club is affiliated to the English Bridge Union.

1 - see Annals of Internal Medicine, American College of Physicians and the Washington Post, 2003 reporting on: Verghese, J. 2003. The effects of mind games on Alzheimer’s and dementia. Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, USA.

For further information, please contact Matt Betts, the EBU’s press and communications officer, on 01296 317 200 or by email See full press release here.

About Hitchin Bridge Club:
The club started in 2000 with only a handful of bridge players. In 2005, it became affiliated to the EBU. It successfully obtained a lottery grant in 2007 to purchase a Dealer4 card dealing machine and associated equipment. In February 2011 it became the first bridge club to obtain charitable status and is now a charitable company limited by guarantee. The club currently plays two evenings a week but is hoping to increase the number of sessions. Membership is approximately 125 and the club is proposing to build a new club house and community centre to replace the current hired hall, which is due to be demolished in the next 2 years.

Charity Commission:
The Charity Commission is the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales. See for further information or call the contact centre on 0845 300 0218. As of 28 February 2011, the Charity Commission is opening a public consultation on the advancement of amateur sport as a charitable aim. Rosie Chapman, Executive Director Policy and Effectiveness at the Charity Commission, said: "For years, sporting activities have been used to further a wide variety of charitable aims, for example to advance the physical education of young people or to relieve disability or the effects of old age. Now that advancing amateur sports or games is in itself a charitable aim we want, with the help of the sector, to explore what that means. We are particularly interested in hearing views on what types of sport or game which involve mental, as opposed to physical, exertion might be capable of being charitable. We are also publishing reports on our final public benefit assessments, which looked at sport and recreation charities." See full press release here:

Monday 28 February 2011

Jane Preddy

31st January 1928 – 24th February 2011

Jane Preddy started playing bridge at the age of 11, when her grandmother taught her the rudiments of the game in the air raid shelters during the Blitz. In the 1940s she played much Canasta with Terence Reese and her first, late husband, William Preddy, as well as bridge with many of the big names of the time including “Skid” Simon.

Having enjoyed a string of successes on the national bridge scene in the late 1940s, Jane stopped playing in order to raise a family of five – four daughters, including former bridge international Kay, and a son. However, she returned to bridge in the 1980s, when she revitalised her international career; among other successes, she represented Great Britain in the World Championships in Japan in 1991. It was in the early 1980s that Jane made her most significant contribution to bridge, when she founded the West of England Bridge Club in Bristol, a club that attracted many future internationals such as Andrew Robson, Marc Smith and David Carlisle, with whom Jane lived for the last thirty years and married in 2003. The star of the club was undoubtedly Jane herself, an exceptional teacher who attracted a very devoted following.

Jane retired from Bristol to Kent, where she took up golf, in the late 1980s but soon after she moved again. First she briefly co-managed the Acol Club in London together with Andrew Robson, then she followed David Carlisle first to Aberystwyth, where he gained a PhD, and later to Essex, where he became a school teacher.

Jane Preddy loved life and was much loved by all her family and friends. She leaves her second husband, four daughters and a son. She had thirteen grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Jane Preddy - Funeral Arrangements

Jane Preddy’s funeral is at 12pm on Friday 11th March 2011 at Parndon Wood Crematorium & Cemetery, Parndon Wood Road, Harlow, Essex CM19 4SF. The family requests no flowers but donations to either the Harlow RGT (Retired Greyhound Trust) – Jane adored her dogs – or the NSPCC. Cheques made payable to either and sent c/o Daniel Robinson and Son, 79/81 South Street, Bishop's Stortford, CM23 3AL. Cheques can also be given to the funeral directors on the day. If any of her friends are coming can you please let David Carlisle know via email at

Sunday 27 February 2011

Appeal Focus

The second edition of Appeal Focus is now available. It's aimed at Appeal chairmen, other players who have regularly served on appeal committees, referees and tournament directors.

Monday 21 February 2011

England win Junior Camrose & Peggy Bayer Trophies

The England teams were victorious in Ayr at the weekend. The Peggy Bayer team won comfortably and finished a massive 63 VPs ahead of Scotland. The Junior Camrose team had a closer run, but eventually were 9 VPs ahead of second-placed Scotland. Congratulations to both teams!

Wednesday 16 February 2011

NEC Cup - Japan

Congratulations to the Dutch/English NEDUK team (David Gold, David Bakhshi, Louk Verhees and Ricco van Prooijen) who have won the NEC Cup in Yokohama. The Hackett team (Paul Hackett, Justin Hackett, Tom Hanlon and Hugh McGann) went out in the semi finals.

Also, congratulations to the England Ladies: Heather Dhondy, Nevena Senior, Fiona Brown, Susan Stockdale who won the B Division of the Swiss Teams. And to Justin Hackett who came second in the ASUKA CUP with partner, Masaru Naniwada.

Official website

Tuesday 15 February 2011

Matthew Hoskins - Obituary

MATTHEW HOSKINS of Sussex who died on the 1st February 2011 at the age of 51 of a heart attack had been an ever present and well known figure in the Bridge world for over 25 years. Bridge had been a significant part of his life from his days at Whitgift School onwards.
Matthew was a Premier Grand Master and prolific master point winner and won the Annual Master Point Award when sponsored by Macallan. He had numerous domestic tournament successes in Sussex where he won the Spring Congress twice, the County Pairs three times and the County Teams on five occasions in addition to representing the County in the Tollemache. His successes on the tournament circuit included the BBL Isle of Man Teams, a number of EBU One Day Events, the Scarborough Pairs with his wife Liz, the Porthcawl Congress Pairs and Teams, Autumn Congress Satellite Pairs and the National Swiss Teams.

He and Liz were also third in the Portland Pairs. In knockout events he was twice a Crockfords finalist, once being runner up and less than a month before his death he was on the Horsham Team which won the 2009-10 National Inter-Club Knockout claiming a number of significant scalps along the way.

At Brighton he won the Mid-week Knockout teams several times, the Mixed Pairs with his wife Liz, twice the Mixed Pivot Teams, had frequent appearances in both A & B Teams Finals and finished third in the Main Pairs in 2010.

In tournaments abroad he had reached the knockout stages of the Rosenblum in 1998 in Lille losing to the eventual bronze medallists. In 2003 in the European Open in Menton he was on a team reaching the last sixteen of the knockout phase before losing to Sabine Auken.

Always courteous at the bridge table, he was one of the nominees for the inaugural John Armstrong Award in 2009.He would always make sure of welcoming players to the table and of encouraging newcomers to the tournament world.

Away from the bridge table he had a keen interest in horse racing and was proud to have been in the Winners Enclosure after the 2009 Grand National won by Vida Bingham's horse Mon Mome.

Whilst Matthew loved teams play especially knockout events Matthew was also a careful Pairs player and in one season had second places in the Easter Guardian Pairs and the National Pairs in addition to the Crockfords second place. He often joked about exchanging those seconds for a win!

On a personal note Matthew has been my good friend for nearly 25 years at and away from the bridge table. It seems hard to believe I won't again have the 'phone call on a Monday morning to chat about the weekend's bridge. I was fortunate to have played bridge with him for many years and in his last event, the National Swiss Teams, where the team finished 4th, the weekend before his death.

Matthew was a popular figure through his competitive but fair attitude to the game allied to a fine if occasionally cutting sense of humour and a keen eye for a practical joke. Matthew lived in Shoreham and is survived by his wife Liz. He will be very sorely missed.

(Andrew Southwell, printed on the Sussex website)

Thursday 10 February 2011

Tollemache Final 2011

Congratulations to the North East team (Bill March, Val Gibson, Christopher Owen, John Atthey, Martin Kane, Malcolm Oliver, Julian Gibson, Damien Hassan, Clive Owen) who won the Tollemache Final. This was the first time the North East has won this prestigious event. The Tollemache Cup is the inter-county championships for teams of eight.

Wednesday 9 February 2011

Matthew Hoskins

The EBU is extremely sad to announce the death of Matthew Hoskins (Sussex) who was recently a member of Horsham 'A' which won the 2009/10 National Inter Club Knockout competition, beating Cambridge 'A' in the final. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife and family at this time.

Funeral arrangements for Matthew Hoskins

The funeral will be at the Church of the Good Shepherd, Kings Walk, Shoreham by Sea, West Sussex BN 43 5LF at 11am on Tuesday 22 February 2011, followed by the committal at 12 noon at Mill Lane cemetery, Mill Lane, Shoreham.

Lunch will follow at the Ardington Hotel, Steyne Gardens, Worthing, West Sussex BN11 3DZ. Parking in the immediate vicinity of the hotel can be difficult, but there is an NCP car park close by.

Everyone is very welcome at the service, at the cemetery and at lunch.

For catering purposes it would help if I could have some idea of numbers. If you are proposing to attend, please let Matthew’s brother Toby know at

Flowers or donations are welcome. Donations in Matthew's memory for the RNLI (Shoreham Harbour Lifeboat Station) or the EBU Youth and Education Trust would be gratefully accepted, and may be left in church or sent to Caring Lady Funeral Director, 68 High Street, Shoreham-by-Sea, West Sussex BN43 5DB.

Tuesday 1 February 2011

Annual Master Point Reports

The 2010 Master Point reports are now ready. Congratulations to Ed Scerri for winning the Sunday Telegraph Salver for the most points earned during the year. He was ahead of Frank and Janet Springett. In the Gold Point list, David Bakhshi is once again top of the table, followed by John Holland in second and Michael Byrne in third.

The Club Champions have also been announced. These are the players who earned the most local master points at each club from April - December. The club winners were entered into the Annual Prize Draw, so congratulations to the following prize winners:

Steve Lee and Chrys Poole - Hazlemere - £400 (£200 each)
Ray Foulds - Worcester - £200
Graham Boutell and Ann Grant - Stratford St. Mary - £100 (£50 each)

Wednesday 5 January 2011

Eric Pudsey (22.05.24 – 02.01.11)

Eric died peacefully at a Care Home in Hull after a long illness.

He was the Vice President of Yorkshire Contract Bridge Association from 1999 but was best known as Yorkshire Secretary from 1980 to 1999, a role which he combined with that of Treasurer for many of those years. He received a Dimmie Fleming Award in 1999 following his retirement, in recognition of his tremendous commitment to bridge administration.

He was also one of the leading Yorkshire bridge players particularly during the 1980s and was selected to represent the county at all levels on many occasions.

Eric left school at the age of 16 to work at a local Estate Agents, but in 1942 he was conscripted into the army and in 1946 was posted to Rangoon where he became editor of the forces newspaper, the Burma Star. After being demobbed in 1947 he obtained a science degree from Hull University and qualified as a teacher. He spent the rest of his career teaching at schools in Hull and never married.

Yorkshire bridge owes a great deal to Eric and he will be fondly remembered by the county as both a player of the highest quality and for his unstinting commitment to the county’s administration.

The funeral will take place at the Northern Cemetery, Hull on Monday 17 January 2011 at 11.00 a.m.