September 2011

Bridge Teaching in Suffolk

Jeremy Flint on bridge

From the cover of Bridge: Learn Through Strips where the great Jeremy Flint (pictured) gives lessons in strip-cartoons; sadly out of print.

This time of year as people return from late summer holidays, bridge teaching starts over the county.

Last year the EBU launched an initiative, Teaching for Club Development, and many of Suffolk's clubs now incorporate a teaching course. Some clubs have a long tradition of doing just this and can be justifiably proud they were ahead of the curve.

Our game needs new players and there are people out there who want to learn – why don't YOU introduce someone to bridge?

Note the courses near you and encourage your friends, whether they are complete beginners or play a little. Keen social and occasional players who already know the mechanics can normally join courses after a term or so.

Lastly, don't forget our own Suffolk Novices competition in November – can you tempt a social player to a first taste of duplicate? See 'Forthcoming Events'.

These clubs are running classes, described below:

  • Framlingham
  • Ipswich & Kesgrave
  • Risbygate
  • Stowmarket
  • Woodbridge


Framlingham, who meet in Framlingham Conservative Club, are restarting their classes and details are on their website. will be happy to answer any questions.

Ipswich & Kesgrave

Four at bridge (thanks to ABTA)

Following their first-year course last year, Ipswich & Kesgrave are running two courses in 2011-12. One tailored to beginners without any prerequisites and a more advanced course for those who have done the first year or played a little club bridge.

Both courses are to EBU guidelines and make use of their course material. Sessions are held where the club plays, at Kesgrave Community Centre. The 'learn from scratch' group meets on Tuesday evenings at 7:30pm, those for the more experienced on Thursdays at the same time.

The club is holding a free 'Taster Session' on Tuesday 4th October at 7:30pm for those interested to gauge their level. The beginners' group starts on Tuesday 11th October, the advanced course on Thursday 6th October.

Contact Ipswich club secretary, (01394 383701). The club has produced a publicity flyer to advertise their courses and there is more detail on the Ipswich & Kesgrave website.


There is a Learn and Play Club for improvers, Wednesdays 7:00pm to (approx) 9:30pm, run by Celia Jeal.

This is aimed at people who have just completed a year's beginner's course, or who have been playing socially for a number of years and feel in need of a refresher. It usually consists of a short tutorial followed by a gentle, friendly duplicate with pre-dealt hands, most of which relate to the topic covered. Celia is on hand to help with questions about the bidding and play.

You can come as a guest a couple of times to see if you like it, but to continue you have to become a full member of Risbygate Club.

The Learn and Play Club is NOT suitable for complete beginners. Celia is starting two small beginners' groups – one on Tuesday evenings (7:00 – 9:00pm, start 27th September), and one on Thursday mornings (10:00am – 12:00 noon, start 22nd September). For more information please contact (01284 728350).


Stowmarket are just over half way through a 30-week course. "We could accommodate additional people with a very basic understanding of the concepts of bridge to join this group. We meet at 3:00 on Wednesdays, in St Michael's Church Hall, Stowmarket."

"We would like to hear from anyone interested in attending a brand new beginners or improvers course in January 2012."

Contacts are (01449 612357).


A new class is starting on 17th October in conjunction with the duplicate bridge club, which meets on Monday evenings at the Woodbridge Community Hall.

It is an 'Improvers' class specifically aimed at people interested in having a go at more competitive bridge. Woodbridge Club has not only a very good standard of bridge but also a friendly atmosphere.

The class will cover the standard Acol bidding ('Standard English') which is supported by the English Bridge Union, topics on good declarer and defender play, and also familiarisation with the various procedures and regulations that are part of the duplicate game.

These classes will provide a stepping stone for keen players, whether or not they have played duplicate bridge before, to improve their bridge and learn all you need to know about playing duplicate bridge, and then have the chance to join in at the regular club sessions.

Further details from the Woodbridge Club website.

Bridge in the Cupboard

Romeo, the jack of hearts

Backstage the girls were playin' five-card stud by the stairs
Lily had two queens, she was hopin' for a third to match her pair
Outside the streets were fillin' up, the window was open wide
A gentle breeze was blowin', you could feel it from inside
Lily called another bet and drew up the Jack of Hearts

Lily, Rosemary And The Jack Of Hearts by Bob Dylan

Yes, the Heart Knave has always been a heart-breaker, no surprise then we meet Romeo, the Jack of Hearts – at bridge, not poker.

Forthcoming Events

Felixstowe Congress

Saturday and Sunday, 1st & 2nd October

Format unchanged from that which has been a success in recent years:

Full details in the entry form [PDF].

The congress runs a 'partnership desk' to find partners and teammates – drop a line to .

Club Discounts

To encourage participation by Suffolk players, this year we are offering entry to the Felixstowe Congress at discounted rates for members of clubs affiliated to the SCBA.

The entry forms are exclusive to clubs affiliated to Suffolk and give members a reduction of around 10% on the regular entry plus a small commission to the club. Check with your club secretary for more details.

Woolpit Charity Event

Friday 14th October 2011, 2:00pm at Woolpit Village Hall

A charity bridge afternoon in aid of Woolpit Village Hall. Download an entry form or a poster for a club notice-board [both PDFs].

Enquiries to (01359 241534).

Suffolk Championship Pairs Qualifying Heats

October in clubs. Heats are held embedded in a regular club session and those scoring 50% or more go through to the semi-final in February.

Note that you cannot make more than one attempt at qualification and pairs playing in a qualifying round are deemed to be trying to qualify unless they have explicitly excluded themselves before play commences.

So listen to club announcements in October!

Suffolk Novices

Sunday 6th November 2011, 2:00pm at Risbygate. This event is primarily intended for students taking bridge lessons, Bridge for All Students, and social players new to duplicate bridge. The field will be divided to take account of varying levels of ability and the emphasis is on friendly and enjoyable bridge.

Entrants do not need to be members of the Suffolk Contract Bridge Association. There will be between 10 and 18 deals before tea with less experienced groups playing fewer boards at a slower pace. After tea, there will be further bridge and the event will finish at around 6.30pm – with prize giving by 7:00pm.

You can download Entryform and would be glad to answer any questions.


Men's and Women's Pairs

Jane and Andrew Moore were winners of the Unmixed Pairs – though not in partnership of course. Andrew won the Men's partnering David Price and Jane took the Women's event with Elizabeth Tora.

Women's Pairs
1.Elizabeth Tora & Jane Moore63.69%
2.Maria Allnutt & Debby Sutcliffe62.03%
3.Margaret Scurlock & Elizabeth Godden59.69%
Men's Pairs
1.David Price & Andrew Moore62.85%
2.Julian Lang & David Morran61.11%
3.Steve Roswald & Rui Paes56.94%

16 pairs competed in the women's event, 14 in the men's. See the full results: Men's and Women's.

Ipswich Swiss Pairs

Sue Flin and Graham Beeton won all their matches to take Ipswich and Kesgrave Club's annual Swiss Pairs.

1.Graham Beeton & Sue Flin103 VPs
2.Barbara Barker & Elaine Green100
3=Mike Malin & Eric Newman87
3=Allyn Bignell & Tony Aldous87

32 pairs took part, see the full results or on the Ipswich site.

EBU Autumn Simultaneous Pairs

The final results aren't yet official but after a week, with most clubs scoring and uploading electronically, the results are unlikely to change.


A great result for John Hooper and David Goodliffe and a good show too for their club Clare who had two top-100 finishers.

3.John Hooper & David GoodliffeClare70.79%
41.Glyn Button & Ron SmithFramlingham64.53%
53.Adele Wayman & George MoodyClare63.73%
95.Philip Brigden & Denis CarterRisbygate62.03%

1652 pairs took part, playing at 87 clubs in 3 countries. Full results on the ECats website.


The Tuesday event proved a less happy hunting ground with Tony and David Haig-Thomas of Colchester Club highest-placed nationally in 281st. 1877 pairs took part, playing at 111 clubs in 4 countries. Full results on the ECats website.