The first County event I ever directed was also the first (and almost only) County event I have ever won! That was 1989, it was an 18 table Teams event in Wiltshire, and I replaced the scheduled TD three minutes before the event began! I was living away from home at the time working on a road construction contract, back in my previous life as a Civil Engineer.
In 1998, I started playing bridge on the Internet. At the end of the following year, the turn of the millennium, the EBU Online Bridge Club was born and I changed career from supervising bridge construction to supervising bridge play as EBU Online Bridge Manager.
In April 2002, the EBU Online BC merged with the provider’s own club and became Bridge Club Live (BCL). At the beginning of October 2003, BCL went independent from the EBU so, as it ceased to be an EBU Membership Service, my role finished. Three weeks later, I found myself persuaded to fill a vacancy as Chief TD at Sheffield Bridge Club, one of the 20 busiest clubs in England, and also, early in 2004, I was invited onto the Panel of EBU TDs.
In 2010, BCL invited me to become involved again as Chief TD. I’m actually their only TD, so I don’t do a huge amount of delegating. I also resumed writing features on online bridge for English Bridge, which now appear regularly in the Online Extra section.
I’ve been involved in grading schemes since 1987 when I came up with a handicapping scheme for Trowbridge BC, and then, though the 1990s, for Sheffield BC. In 2002, I developed that into a scheme for BCL, which we called PPI, which stands for Past Performance Index. The then EBU Chairman e-mailed me soon after and asked about having such a scheme for the EBU. I replied that it would be great but there would be no chance as it would need all clubs to send all result data to Aylesbury. Roll on a few years of technological advance to Universal Membership and an opportunity for me to adapt the BCL scheme into the National Grading Scheme. The NGS Full Guide is the largest document I’ve ever compiled, but I must credit the rest of the group for their support, advice and heavier maths, and, particularly, project leader Mike Christie for producing all the programming. Back around 2003, I would never have dreamed we would or could have the NGS as it is now.
Unusually for an EBU TD, I run very few County events, but being CTD for both BCL and Sheffield BC keep me quite busy, as well as continuing involvement with the NGS.
I enjoy directing at EBU events, especially the larger events where I get to team up with fellow EBU TDs, who are a really professional and friendly group of people.
I am “Senior Kibitzer” in BCL and “Pig Trader” in IBLF. It didn’t take long for others to suggest that an alternative anagram for “Partridge” is “Great Drip”.
Last updated: January 2017