Preston BC opens new facilities thanks to lottery grant

Preston Bridge Club have recently celebrated the official opening of their new facilities, with EBU Chairman Jeremy Dhondy joining them at the event. You can read more about the opening in the Lancashire Post Online.

The project was helped by funding from The Big Lottery, which enabled the purchase of new equipment, including Bridgemates, dealing machines, computers and kitchen equipment. They were aided in the application process by Third Sector Consultancy (TSC), who have also helped Somerset CBA's application, and are currently working with English Bridge Education & Development.

Any clubs or counties thinking of applying for lottery funding through Awards for All may wish to use TSC's services. Either contact them directly, or contact Club Liaison Officer, Bev Purvis (bev@ebu.co.uk), who can put you in touch with them.

Thoresen & Erichsen win Portland Pairs

Jon Thoresen & Helen Erichsen have won the Portland Pairs. This Mixed Pairs competition was played at twelve venues around the country, and scored across all 284 participating pairs.

Jon & Helen played at Tunbridge Wells and finished with a score of 64.68%. Nathalie Shashou & Nick Sandqvist, who played at Richmond, were second with 60.63%, and Jill Mumford & John Eyre, who played at Welwyn Garden City, were third with 60.41%.

Changes to the National Grading Scheme

Changes have been introduced to the National Grading Scheme. These were made in response to feedback received during the consultation of clubs which took place last year.

  • The grade of players with 'mature' grades will not change when they partner players who have played fewer than 150 graded boards. The session will not count towards the grade of the more experienced player, but will count towards the grade of the less experienced player. It is hoped that this will stop people being deterred from acting as a host or mentor at their club due to concerns they have about how it might affect their NGS.
  • Grades will be published once you have played 150 boards (previously 300) but they will change more quickly than before to enable new players to reach an appropriate grade sooner. A grade will still be considered 'evolving' until you have played 1000 boards, at which point it 'matures'.

These changes are now in effect.

2018-2023 strategy document developed

The EBU Board considered all responses to the consultation through Counties on its draft 2018-2023 strategy document at its meeting on 21st March. Most Counties seemed content with the overall strategy. There were, however, a number of constructive suggestions to clarify the approach, and many of these have been included in a revised document which the Board has now agreed. It will be published later in the spring and will be included in the June edition of English Bridge.

In particular the Board has taken on the need to be clearer that this is a directional document, that needs to be underpinned by firm operational plans, whilst also taking heed of the advice not to over-stretch limited and often voluntary resources i.e. the implementation of the strategy needs to be phased with the most urgent items perhaps being investing in seeking new members, including juniors, and in a more structured approach to teaching through EBED. With this in mind the 2018/9 budget, which was agreed at the same Board meeting, has been drawn up accordingly, whilst seeking counterbalancing economies in other areas.

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