Judicial Review rules in favour of Sport England

We are disappointed to report that the judge hearing the Judicial Review has ruled that Sport England is acting lawfully when it refuses to recognise bridge as a sport.

Despite the well crafted and logical arguments which were put forward by our legal representatives, Mr Justice Dove upheld Sport England’s position that they can decline to recognise as sports activities which do not have a significant physical component.

The EBU is disappointed by this decision, as an opportunity has been lost to enhance an activity which has substantial benefits to wide sections of the community. It also means that current definitions of what is, or is not, a sport have little consistency or sense behind them.

Any possible further action will be discussed at the next EBU Board Meeting. Whatever action is taken the EBU will continue to work with the counties and affiliated clubs to make bridge, and its wide ranging benefits, available to as many people as possible.

Last month the government held a comprehensive consultation in to 'sport' - 'A New Strategy for Sport'. The EBU made a contribution to the consultation, which can be read here. It is hoped that this consultation will lead to government bodies being proactive, and working to enable more people to enjoy and benefit from playing bridge.