For Skittles and St Leonard's weekend reports see News Page
PLEASE BE SEATED BY 7.15pm
STEWARDS urgently required - please volunteer
Kate Dalton & Gill Dowling
This page has information and news of interest to the members. For a full list of forthcoming events, see "Calendar" on the menu and for a list of results see "Results".
On a pleasant October evening 23 jolly folk bowled up to enjoy another sociable night of Skittles at Limpsfield.
When all had arrived, Kathy organised the teams, appropriately named Diamonds, Hearts and Spades, and the tournament was soon under way. There were three rounds and competition was fierce. The team captains were selected to set the balls rolling. Round one was a straight foward test of skill and accuracy. With three balls to knock down nine pins, surely it should have been easy enough to topple the target, but somehow mine seemed to find a path through the gaps, unfortunately scoring just one. What a disgrace for a captain! Surely the rest of the team could and would do much better.
In round two it helped to be ambidextous as the "bowl with the other hand" rule was imposed. For the final round people could do what they liked. Some of our members, just to show their flexibility, chose "the bowl it backwards through your legs" method which has been employed in the past. Others kept it simple.
With two visitors from America, some members new to skittles, and some golden oldies like Kath Kirk, we were a mixed ability bunch, with ages ranging from the 50s to 90s. But all handicaps were overcome with ingenuity and a little help from a friend, and what was lacking in ability was made up for in enthusiasm.
Half way through the evening there was a break for food, and with the famous chips on the menu again, it did not disappoint.
After the scores were totted up, by our lovely scorer Helen, prizes were awarded. Spades was the winning team with 128 points. The highest individual scorer was Geraldine Shepherd with an impressive 22 points. Keeping it in the family, the "Best Man" was Richard Shepherd with 21 points. Perhaps they have been having a crafty practice?
All in all, it was a very enjoyable evening. Many thanks to Kathy for organising this early Autumn treat for the Allingham.
The Royal Victoria, a splendid 19th Century seaside hotel (1828) has a visitors' book with many members of the royal family including Queen Victoria and her family, George V and many members of the aristocracy over the years, To add to this distinguished list, it received a return visit by 44 eminent members of the Allingham Bridge Club for its Autumn weekend. A great pleasure to catch up with old friends and to get to know new players a little better.
Not surprisingly, the hotel was not built with 2018 motor transport in mind and our drivers enjoyed the usual scramble to park in the neighbourhood. However, this was of little consequence compared to the many advantages. Moderately priced weekend, large comfortable bedrooms, traditional elegant public rooms, good food and, best of all, excellent sea views and accessibility to the St Leonard's sea front. Was it the Hotel or the Bridge that got members so excited they had to be frequently asked to keep the noise down during play and this was before happy hour!
Proving our hunger for modernisation and innovation, this was our first use of the portable BridgeTab scoring system for a weekend and all worked brilliantly thanks to the hard work of Kris. Instant traveller results and central scoring worked efficiently but a small misunderstanding at first. We were used to finding the results of this system on the Club website so members were heard to ask the results from members who had access to their mobile phones. They anxiously sought the scores for Friday play on Friday evening only to be told 5 to 3 to Europe after 3 to 1 down in the morning! On Saturday evening it was 10 to 6!! Some confusion with the Ryder Cup being played over the same weekend.
A full program of bridge with results shown below:
Fri pm N/S Helen & Gerri E/W Pam & Norma
Sat am N/S Tony & Roger E/W Gerri & Jane
Sat pm N/S Audrey & Chris E/W Pam & Jill
Sun am N/S Hazel & Gerri E/W Roger & Angela
Congratulations to all winners. Many thanks to all the directors (Nina, Helen, Phil and Rosemary) and a huge thank you to Chris for another successful and very enjoyable weekend.
Seventy plus members arrived at 7pm and spent time enjoying a welcome glass of wine before taking seats at beautifully decorated tables of eight. Gerri then welcomed everyone and announced the winners of the previous week's championship final - congratulations to Kate & Gill. Hazel then organised each table to queue and help themselves to the buffet - salmon, ham, quiche, chicken legs accomanpanied by some excellent salads. Our thanks go to everyone involved in supplying such a wonderful meal. If the noise level was anything to go by everyone thoroughly enjoyed eating, drinking and socialising!! Whilst the room was cleared and prepared for the evening's bridge, coffee and delicious small cakes were served.
A fantastic team effort and sincere thanks to all involved.
On Monday 5th March a group of 33 intrepid travellers from Allingham Bridge Club set off, at a very civilised hour, for our annual holiday. Our destination was Calpe on Spain's Costa Blanca.
We set off on time but when we arrived at Alicante airport there was a long wait until all of the passengers finally made it to the coach.
The hotel was very pleasant and everybody was happy with their rooms. We arrived in time for dinner. The food was served buffet style and there was plenty of choice and the wine was served by helpful waiters.
The next morning we had a meeting with the Saga reps who told us about the trips available to places of interest in the area. Following which there was an orientation walk around the town. In the afternoon we went on a mini train ride around the area to visit places of interest.
Calpe is known for its beaches, lke sandy Arenal-Bol. Nearby is the Roman site Baños de la Reina, with rock-cut sea pools. On the headland to the east, Peñón de Ifach is a huge limestone rock with thriving birdlife. Below it lies the ruins of Pabla de Ifac, a medieval walled village. La Muralla Roja is an iconic castle-like building by modern Spanish architect Ricardo Bofill.
We had a good sized bridge room and we met each evening at 6.15pm to play four rounds before dinner. I have to report that the play after dinner was "interesting" I think possibly due to the copious amounts of free wine served.
There were a number of trips available each day notably a visit to Valencia. There was also a visit to an old farm house which had no water or other services but inluded many interesting artefacts. The highlight of this half day out was the Spanish lady owner who, over a glass of wine produced from her own grapes, regaled us with hilarious stories. One of the visitors in her Father's time was the author Frederick Forsyth, while there he wrote the best selling novel "The Dogs of War". Some of the stories she told about him I won't repeat for fear of libel action!
There were trips to markets and shops where shoes and handbags were purchased. They were great value, genuine Michael Kors and Mulberry for 20 euros!
A number of our group went for walks around the area. The promenades and beaches were lovely. Some of our hardier members climbed the famous rock, which was hazardous, as one lady found out the hard way. Overall the weather was very good, sunny but windy.
On the last morning prize giving took place and thanks were given to all those who spent time making the holiday such a success. Roger and Angela for arranging the holiday and ensuring all went well during our stay. Rosemary and Kathy for organising equipment, play and prizes. All the directors: Nina, David, Mike and Rosemary and finally Kris for scoring every session (he did this each night so that the results were available at breakfast).
Finally, the winners were:
Tues N/S Norma & Rosemary E/W Dirk & Ingar
Weds N/S David & Jane E/W Dirk & Ingar
Thurs N/S Sally & David E/W Kathy & Karen
Fri N/S Audrey & Norma E/W Liz & Kate
Sat N/S Gerri & Hazel E/W Nina & Rosie
Sun N/S Audrey & Liz E/W Chris & Roger
Congratulations go to all winners especially the overall champion David - well done.
The Chatsworth Hotel. A bit like slipping into a pair of well loved (and worn) slippers. Such a familiar and well liked location. Almost home from home as, for many of us, this was not our first visit. Looking at Muriels's commentary from a year ago I can only report that according to our own diaries this was our fifth visit with the Allingham. Many of the arrivals came before lunch and dispersed in different directions or stayed at the hotel for lunch. The usual anticipation of a fun weekend of bridge was clearly in the air.
The first of the four weekend bridge sessions commenced at 15:15 once all 36 enthusiasts had gathered in a spacious room already prepared for play. A perfect number for a Mitchell movement. Briefly interrupted by coffee, tea and biscuits the session ended with enough time allowed to freshen up and have a drink or two before dinner.
Dinner on both evenings was served in a private dining room, as was breakfast on both mornings and lunch on Saturday. The round tables of eight encouraging members to mix and socialise. Comments I heard from many members rated the quality of the meals as very good though I have to say that when I tried the vegetarian option on the second evening it did nothing to convert me, as a confirmed carnivore, to a vegetarian lifestyle! The staff however were courteous, efficient and attentive.
After dinner, on the Friday, tradition has it that a quiz is organised. Although not quizzers ourselves I am given to understand that it was well received and enjoyed by all with many challenging topics to test the knowledge of the teams. After lunch on Saturday the free time before the third bridge session allowed those with a wander lust to venture out for walks and some fresh air. However, as we discovered the wind was anything but light and certainly served to blow away any cobwebs. The wind was soon followed by the rain and a soaking for those unfortunate enough to be caught out.
And so on to Sunday. The customary team play where you endeavour to not let your team down. This is a fun session of bridge but, with a prize for the highest scoring team to be grabbed, no less serious.
And so the weekend away reached its climax with prizes distributed to the winners of all sessions. Well earned rewards also to the directors: Nina, Rosemary, Phil and Richard for managing the sessions, to the quiz organisers: Liz assisted by Margaret for an evening of entertainment, and special thanks to Liz who tirelessly completed the scoring after every session and to Audrey, the organiser, for a weekend that ran so smoothly from start to finish, aided and assisted by the staff of the Chatsworth Hotel from the front desk, through to the kitchen staff, the bar staff and the cleaning staff who kept our rooms clean and tidy.
We all had another enjoyable weekend and, as every time we have visited the Chatsworth, extraordinary value for money.
Fri pm N/S Audrey & Phil E/W Jane & Gerri
Sat am N/S Liz & Phil E/W Nina & Rosie
Sat pm N/S Rosie & Barbara E/W Phil & Jane
Sun am teams: Margaret & Liz and Keith & Val
Well done Phil on achieving a hat trick!!
Members arrived on Monday 18 to be greeted with a glass of punch or wine and enjoyed socialising before starting bridge. After the 'hat' competition which was won by Sally Mackinlay and Val Simpson the bridge commenced. During the tea/coffee break mince pies were served. A great evening and many thanks to all Santa's little helpers.
Our 25th Anniversary Dinner was held on the 30 June 2017 at the Reigate Manor Hotel. We had been informed that the dinner was to be held to celebrate our 25th Anniversary some time ago. We chose what we wanted to eat from the menu provided so all we had to do was turn up.
Everyone arrived looking lovely in their party best and were greeted by champagne/orange juice, which was served in the entrance sitting area. We all had to hand in our tickets to go in the tombola drum for the draw for the 'winning ticket' at the end of the evening.
On the table just inside the entrance to the Ballroom cards were placed, in alphabetical order, on which our names and menu choices were printed. This was very helpful as I for one could not remember what I had chosen! On each table was a 'gift' anniversary pen and a magnificent flower arrangement with a candle in the middle, which were created by Val Simpson.
The evening went really well. It started with an introduction from Gerri Schofield and was then followed by the food and wine, which was very good.
After the main course there were talks by Kathy Winter and Jim Millmore, both of which were very interesting and amusing. We were then given two quizzes. One was baby photos of committee members and helpers, organised by Chris Denham, and we had to identify who they were. The other, organised by Liz Booth, was questions based on what happened in 1992 - the year Allingham Bridge Club was formed.
Finally, we were served with plates of anniversary cake which was made by Karen Ivins' daughter. The cake was impressive, as well as delicious, and featured, appropriately playing cards.
Whilst enjoying coffee and mints the results of the quizzes were announced by Hazel Crowson, resulting in an amusing dash to supply the answer to a tie-breaker, and prizes awarded. The draw for the 'winning' ticket was then made by Anne Jackson, a founder member, and the prize given to Gail Sperring.
Finally, the winners of the Allingham Cup were announced by Ann Calverley and the cup presented to Jeremy Trezise and Andy Cassin - congratulations!
All in all it was a wonderful evening, beautifully organised, and I'm sure we would like to express our thanks to all who were involved in arranging the event. A great success.