English Bridge Education and Development

Newsletter - December 2016

Dear Bob

EBED have been very busy since our last newsletter, working to promote and develop bridge for everyone in England - whether established, new, or potential players, and at both affiliated and non-affiliated clubs. 

Please don't hesitate to contact our staff if there is something we can do to help you. And similarly we would love to hear from you if you are able to help us. Details on how you can support our work are at the foot of this newsletter.

Recruiting for the autumn lessons

In August we ran an advert in the Daily Telegraph encouraging people who were interested in starting to learn bridge to contact us (see below).

We were delighted with the response – although it was so much larger than we thought that we struggled to handle all the enquiries. We were able to match over 600 respondents with bridge teachers in their local area – and even now we are still getting a few enquiries referencing the advert.

We hope to run a similar campaign next summer to try to encourage even more people to learn to play.

Health and wellbeing project

Since our last newsletter we have continued to work with researchers at Stirling University to look at the health and social benefits of playing bridge, including combatting social isolation and cognitive decline.

Thank you to all those who completed the survey which was circulated over the summer. We were very pleased to receive over 7000 responses. The researchers, along with one of the charity’s Trustees, Dr Caroline Small, have been analysing the responses and preparing a report on the findings. We hope this will be available soon, and a summary will be in the February issue of English Bridge.

There has also been an extensive study of existing literature on the topic, which has both provided confirmation of some existing ‘theories’ and revealed possible new approaches to the teaching and promotion of bridge.

This project will continue next year, and has been supported in part by proceeds from the 2016 EBED Sim Pairs (see below). Thank you to everyone who took part and contributed to our work in this area.

EBED Simultaneous Pairs


The EBED Autumn Simultaneous Pairs took place in September, with over 140 clubs and over 2700 pairs taking part. This has raised over £11,000 which will go to our health and wellbeing project (see above). Thank you to everyone who took part, and to the clubs which hosted heats. Your support of our work is greatly appreciated.

Congratulations to the winners on each evening:

  • Monday 5th - Marc Chawner and Paul Spencer at Hutton Duplicate BC
  • Tuesday 6th - Austin Barnes and Sue Hyman at Bolton BC
  • Wednesday 7th - Peter Pennington-Smith and Eileen Townsend at Wymondham Wednesday BC
  • Thursday 8th - Chris Chambers and Peter Gemmell at Ipswich & Kesgrave BC
  • Friday 9th - Mark Sheppard and Philip Bennett at Devizes BC

Full results are available via the links above.


The EBED Simultaneous Pairs will take place again in 2017.

  • Spring Sim Pairs – 8th to 11th May
  • Autumn Sim Pairs – 4th to 8th September (including a Friday competition).

The proceeds from these events will go to improving and developing the infrastructure for bridge teaching in England. 

This work is very important as without plenty of good lessons taking place we cannot produce the next influx of bridge players which are needed if the game is going to thrive.

Please support our work by taking part and/or encouraging your club to host a heat. Details on the sims are available on our website.

Education Advisory Group

As part of EBED’s work to increase the quantity and quality of bridge teaching which takes place, an Education Advisory Group has been established to make recommendations to the Trustees regarding the future operation of English Bridge Teachers Association (EBTA). This group is being chaired by Trustee, David Waxman, and they met for the first time in mid-November.

They will particularly focus on: providing the services and materials most required by members; the development and promulgation of good practice and ideas; the promotion of bridge teaching to enhance the size and scope of the sector.

As part of the process, EBTA members will be invited to complete an online survey in the summer of next year in order for them to contribute and influence new future proposals. EBTA members will be sent more information via a future Accolade newsletter.

EBTA Convention

We are organising a ‘get-together’ for EBTA members next September. The EBTA Convention (formerly known as 'Jamboree') will be at Chesford Grange in Warwickshire, 8th – 10th September 2017. For more information please contact Sue Maxwell – sue@ebedcio.org.uk.

EBTA (English Bridge Teachers' Association) membership is available to all bridge teachers - see here for more information on joining the organisation, and the benefits of membership.

TD Training

We are continuing to offer a large number of TD Training courses around the country and are starting to run bespoke courses, addressing particular topics. Clubs wishing to hold a course on a certain theme, or a series of TD courses for those wishing to work towards a TD qualification, should contact richard@ebedcio.org.uk.

Club Teacher Training

The next Club Teacher Training course will be 1st - 2nd February in Aylesbury. For more details contact Lisa Miller on 01296 317217.

Junior Bridge

This has been a busy six months with many enquiries from new bridge groups. These have ranged from minibridge groups and primary schools, through to bridge groups at universities, plus proactive clubs working in their local area, and we have helped with equipment, materials and advice.

Youth Advisory Group

We have established a Youth Advisory Group to give a platform for a group of those working ‘at the coal face’ in youth bridge to give their views on how the game can be developed in young people. They will advise the Trustees on matters of policy, and provide a sounding board for their ideas. 

Junior Award Scheme

Nearly 150 junior bridge players have completed one of the stages of the Junior Award Scheme since it was introduced, with many more working towards the next level. Congratulations to all who have reached one of their goals. They are all listed in the 'Hall of Fame'.

The scheme is designed to stimulate enthusiasm for junior bridge among young players, parents and educators by offering graded attainment levels which the children can work towards. It breaks down the skills required to develop from raw rookie to serious contender into a set of steps and milestones which can be easily understood and evaluated in the classroom. It can also be used as part of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme.

See here for more information, and details on how your club or school can get involved.

Young Bridge Challenge

This will take place in Loughborough on 4th March and is a fun day of bridge for young players of all abilities. There are competitive tournaments – including the Schools Cup – but also more relaxed tournaments, including a minibridge competition. Entry is free. For more information, or to enter, please contact lisa@ebedcio.org.uk.

Youth Bridge Camps

We were pleased to encourage the holding of two youth bridge camps over the summer. The events in Ardingly - organised by Sussex CBA - and in Cheltenham - organised by junior coordinators in Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire - were very succesful with over 150 juniors taking part.

Another camp will take place in Cheltenham on 8th – 9th April. It is aimed at all levels and ages, from beginners to junior experts, and includes tuition, coaching and play, along with other games and social activities. For more information and application forms please contact Joan Bennett.

In summer 2017 there will also be events in Ardingly (scheduled for 26th/27th August) and the Junior Teach-In will return to Loughborough on the weekend of 1st-3rd September. There will be more details in the newsletter next spring, but please put the dates in your diary.

Accelerated learning scheme - Fast Track Bridge!

Our work with Fast Track Bridge – perhaps fittingly – continues apace, and we are on track to meet our target of having this available for the start of the new teaching year in September 2017.

Fast Track Bridge (previously called Fast Forward Bridge, but we have found out that name was already taken) will come in modules to enable the teacher to deliver the course material flexibly over 24 hours of learning. This will be ideal for those want to learn to play quickly, and give teachers the chance to deliver shorter courses alongside the more traditional ‘once-a-week-for-three-terms’ method.

All EBTA members will be notified when the materials are ready, but any non-members who wish to learn more about the scheme should contact Sue Maxwell – sue@ebedcio.org.uk – to be contacted prior to its launch.

Bridge for All course work books

This autumn we have been pleased to launch the latest edition of the Bridge for All course work books. These were refreshed to give them a new design, and also to update content to make them more relevant to modern playing systems, such as an option to use weak two openings.


The new books have proved to be very popular with teachers and students alike, and are selling very well. Beginning Bridge Book One and Continuing Bridge Book Two are available to purchase from Lisa Miller on 01296 317217.
EBTA teacher's discounts apply.

Promotional leaflets

We have a promotional leaflet available for anyone who wishes to spread the word about EBED and the work we are doing. If you would like to be sent copies for ditribution then please contact richard@ebedcio.org.uk.

Supporting EBED

EBED cannot rely solely on the generous support of the EBU, so needs your help. Donations, whatever their size, are greatly appreciated, but we recognise that a financial donation may not be practical for many members, and you can give us your support in a number of other ways.

  • Take part: Please encourage your local club to consider holding EBED events and, of course, we hope that you will take part yourself!
  • Spread the word: Tell people about what we have to offer and how to find us by phone, email or on the web. If you would like to be sent leaflets (see above) then please get in touch.
  • Volunteer: We are looking for enthusiastic volunteers who could help us to grow - you needn’t make a large commitment of time. Please email us if you feel that you would like to help.
  • Talk to usThis charity is run for the benefit of present and future bridge players, so please engage with us.
  • Donate: You can of course help fund the work of the charity by making a financial donation or gift aid. Please visit www.ebedcio.org.uk/donate or contact finance manager Gail Nancarrow by email or on 01296 317210. We are also able to provide information on legacies and gifts in kind.

Thank you for reading. We hope to hear from you, or see you at one of our activities, soon.


Andrew Petrie, Chairman
English Bridge Education & Development,

Broadfields, Bicester Road,
Aylesbury, HP19 8AZ
01296 317218

Copyright © English Bridge Education and Development is a charitable incorporated organisation established under the Charities Act 2011, Registered Charity No. 1153543

This email has been sent to robertperrin@btinternet.com on behalf of English Bridge Education and Development to all EBU members. To unsubscribe from future newsletters from EBED Unsubscribe here. Please note this does not affect your preferences for emails from the EBU.

View web version