|Allingham Bridge Hols - 10-17 Oct 2023
After a horribly early start, (Gatwick check in 04:25), eighteen weary travellers arrived in good spirits at the Hotel Kaktus, Albir, Costa Blanca, a hotel in a great location right on the sea front. Soon revived by a refreshing drink on the outside terrace, we sat back to relax and enjoy the beautiful views looking out over the pretty bay flanked by tall palm trees. We could be mistaken into thinking we were in Miami!
The hotel, where we were joined by two more members of our group, bringing our total to twenty, proved to be an excellent choice. Our rooms were large and comfortable with balconies affording 'side' sea views.
Other facilities included a large restaurant, bar, lounges, terrace, ballroom and two pools. The roof top one was heated in the Winter (which started the week after we left) so was rather bracing!
Everyone had their preferences and some chose to lounge by the pool with a book or sunbathe, followed with a quick dip, whilst others opted for beach and sea. The challenge of the pebbles, surmountable with appropriate footwear and some trusty support, gave some the opportunity to swim in a surprisingly warm Mediterranean. "Come on in, the water's lovely" proved to be true.
Our "all-inclusive" meals were buffet style with a tasty mix of Spanish and international cuisine with drinks included. One highlight was the Friday Seafood Buffet, which was also popular with local Spanish people who came to enjoy the music and dancing as well.
Albir, nestled under the Sierra Mountains, is a quiet seaside resort with a long tree lined promenade; a perfect place for a gentle stroll, stopping perhaps to enjoy a cup of coffee or some window shopping. For the more adventurous, there was the walk along to Altea and then up to the quaint old town. In the other direction there was a coastal walk up to the lighthouse. This was an easy, scenic path with many seats and helpful panels giving information about the area. Views from the lighthouse across the whole bay were stunning and out to sea dolphins could be spotted, if you were in luck!
Two included excisions were to Denia, a port city with a castle and tree lined street, and "Scenic Sierra", taking you up into the mountains to visit some pretty villages and sample the fragrant air.
An optional trip went to pretty Moraira, which had a fantastic coastal setting with a castle overlooking the beach, and the additional attraction being its famous market.
Market mayhem was also to be had in Albir, as Sunday was Market Day where lots more must have bargains were snaffled up.
Evenings followed a pattern, with the focus turning to Bridge, interspersed with dinner. The second session, after the delights of the lavish buffet and included drinks, led to some merriment and the challenge to play your cards right proved trickier.
Many new partnerships were forged and fortunes came and went. Congratulations go to the overall winner of the week, Gill Dowling, who was keen to acknowledge the thanks she owed to her partners as she played with a different person each night. On our last night we played a Teams movement ably organised by Helen. The winning team, with 33+, consisted of Gail Sperrin & John Cousins and Andy & Claire Cassin. Very well done to all.
Many thanks must go to all the scorers and others who helped in any way, but a particular vote of thanks must go to Helen Saunders for all her hard work in organising everything for us.
Everyone agreed that this was a lovely holiday. The term "inclusive" seems appropriate to describe the atmosphere in general, with such a warm, friendly group of folk adding to the enjoyment.
After a glorious week with wall to wall sunshine, we bid farewell to Spain. Tantalisingly sunny weather greeted our return to England, only to be replaced by the cold, wind and rain. Back home again!!
Tues: Gill & Hazel
Weds: Chris D & Helen
Thurs: Gill & John
Fri: Gill & Gail
Sat: Chris D & Gerri
Sun: Gill & Jenny
Mon Teams: Gail & John and Andy & Claire
Winner of the week: Gill
|Last updated : 20th Oct 2023 15:59 BST
|Skittles Evening 1 Oct 2019
Defying the wet and gloomy weather, 23 jolly folk bowled up to enjoy another social night of Skittles at The Royal British Legion Club in Limpsfield. This was our 8th year at this venue.
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 straightforward 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 too many seemed to find a path straight through the gaps, at least mine did. Techniques varied, with the "softly, softly" approach adopted by some, whilst others favoured the "hurl it down hard and fast" method. Richard was particularly proficient at this scattering the frightened onlookers.
In round two it helped to be ambidextrous as the "bowl with the other hand" rule was imposed.
For the final round people could do what they liked, 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, prizes were awarded. Spades was the winning team with 101 points. Next came Hearts with 94, closely followed by Diamonds with 93. The highest individual scorer was Freda with an impressive 22 points and, keeping it in the family, Jim was second with 20 points. The Millmores strike again! 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. She has already booked the venue for Tuesday 6 October next year, so do put the date in your diary.
|Last updated : 5th Oct 2019 15:13 GMT
|Summer Social - Mon 15 July 2019
Seventy six 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 Helen & Phil. Mary 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.
|Last updated : 5th Aug 2019 09:47 GMT
|25th Anniversary Dinner
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.
|Last updated : 3rd Jul 2017 13:48 GMT
|ALLINGHAM BRIDGE CLUB'S 25TH ANNIVERSARY
CLICK ON BOX TO SEE MORE PHOTOGRAPHS
|Last updated : 29th Jan 2019 13:15 GMT
|Holiday 13-20 Oct 2022
Click on box to view write-up of holiday to Hotel Occidental Isla Cristina, Spain
|Last updated : 28th Dec 2022 13:20 GMT
|30th Anniversary Summer Social - Mon 18 July
Click box to open write-up and photos
|Last updated : 28th Dec 2022 13:21 GMT
|Bridge Holiday to El Rompido - 12-17 March 2020
THE PAIN IN SPAIN
Having received reassurance that the area we were visiting was unaffected by the Corona virus, 32 members set off in cheery spirits for an early departure from Gatwick to Faro to enjoy a week in the sun. After a comfortable flight we were taken by coach to our destination, the Hotel Fuerte El Rompido, described as having a fantastic setting on the unspoilt Costa de la Luz.
All quickly settled in and next morning, Dawn our Saga rep, held a welcome meeting in the bar. In an enthusiastic and efficient manner she gave us all the information about the hotel's amenities and what the local area had to offer. All tastes were catered for, from relaxing on the terrace, or by the pools, walking in the marshlands, to various different excusions, near and far. Perhaps we might like to take a stroll into the village, to sample one of the fish restaurants, or go bird watching in the National Park, take a trip to Seville, or explore more about the history of nearby Huelva and the Rio Tinto Mines? Plans were made for the week ahead.
However, as in "the best laid plans of mice and men ......." all was not to be. With frightening speed, changes to our situation came thick and fast. By the afternoon notices went up informing us all included and optional excursions were cancelled.
Then everything seemed to deteriorate. As the severity of the situation was escalating world-wide, panic set in and family members demanded their loved ones return immediately. For various reasons, two left on Sunday, followed by another five on Monday. The rest of us quickly adapted and made the best of things, relaxing in the sun, playing games, or walking around the grounds. The hotel was clean and comfortable, the food good, with bridge in the evening and the free bar open all day. "What's not to like"?
Next came more restrictions and we were told we could only leave the hotel to go to the doctors, chemist, supermarket, cash points, tobacconists, or hospital. We must keep our distances and not sit in groups. Initially bridge was not allowed, until Roger, our amazing advocate negotiated a deal, whereby the hotel moved us into a much larger room so that we could follow the rules with the tables set two metres apart. Baffingly, we continued to be seated together at long tables in the restaurant.
Next we heard the border had closed between Spain and Portugal. Rumours were rife, but then we were told to pack and be ready to leave at 10:00 on Tuesday as Saga had chartered a flight from Seville to make our great escape.
Pouring rain en route to Seville made our premature return easier and there was the added bonus that we were saving our euros. Finally, after an interminable and frustrating wait in line at the airport check in, we were all relieved to touch down at Gatwick.
In asking around to gauge people's feelings about the success or otherwise of the holiday, I was given various quotes:
"The thing that struck me most about El Rompido was its tranquillity",
"The holiday was great; Allingham undaunted and laughing in the face of adversity",
"A brilliant holiday and I am really sorry to cut it short",
"The Corona part was a bit of a dampener",
"Get a tan, keep drinking, play bridge",
"The Dunkirk spirit to the fore and the free bar is still open",
"Can we come back?",
This from a first timer, "Absolutely Fabulous - really, it was not all about bridge, no matter who you sat next to, it was very sociable with a lot of fun and camaraderie",
From Myra, "yes, I enjoyed it mostly, until they closed the swimming pool"
Everyone was united in their praise of Roger for his brilliance in organisation and diplomacy and an example to us all in his patience.
Thank you to him and all who played their part in making this a truly memorable experience.
Thurs: N/S Roger & Angela E/W Nina & Rosie
Fri: N/S Gerri & Hazel E/W Chris & Kathy
Sat: N/S Margaret & Kathy E/W Nina & Kate
Sun: N/S David & Janet E/W Liz & Margaret
Mon: N/S Kathy & Gill E/W Norma & Jenny
The Holiday Cup competition was cancelled
|Last updated : 21st Mar 2020 10:42 GMT
|Newbury Weekend Jan 2020
What fun to go to a new venue and explore Newbury. An excellent weekend organised by Chris - many thanks to her. Thanks also to the directors, namely Phil, Nina, Rosemary and Richard amd also to our weekend scorer, Kris.
Fri pm: N/S Jane & Helen E/W Hazel & Jane
Sat am: N/S Jill & Norma E/W Hazel & Jane
Sat pm: N/S Richard & Nina & E/W Jane & Liz
Sun team: Helen, Phil, Margaret & Liz
Weekend cup winners: Hazel & Jane
Another fun 'Allingham' weekend.
|Last updated : 27th Jan 2020 13:37 GMT
|Christmas Social Mon 16 Dec 2019
Members started arriving at 7pm and with a glass of mulled wine or red/white wine in their hands mingled and socialised. When the noise died down we played bridge with maybe some adventurous bidding!! During the coffee break mincepies, stollen and small cakes were served which were very welcomed. This year's theme was Christmas based with some wonderful outfits (Rosemary and Roger - last year's wnners), festive hats, jumpers etc. The prizes went to Sally MacKinlay (or was it?) and Ian the 'bauble bearded' Hawkins. A wonderful festive evening and thanks go to all 'Santa's' little helpers.
|Last updated : 18th Dec 2019 16:39 GMT
|St Leonard's Weekend Oct 2019
A pleasure to return to the Queen Victoria Hotel for another Autumn bridge weekend and the welcoming and soothing panaramic view of La Marche or Armelkanel. Well that's enough of Euro speak although worth mentioning the numerous EU nationals providing the excellent youthful staff at the hotel. Hardly a mention of the "B" word to be heard other than from those few Current Affairs junkies among us. The weather was kind to us and encouraged some walking along the excellent sea front and visits to Hastings, the adjacent town, on the bridge-free Saturday afternoon.
No accommodation problems with spectacular huge bedrooms, high ceilings and palatial decor throughout. Everything ran smoothly and our superwoman Chris making sure no serious hiccups. Even when our dining arrangements on Saturday evening were moved to a less salubrious room, we were generously compensated with free bottles of wine that were gratefully consumed.
Thanks to Kris who maintained the Bridgetabs system throughout and Hazel who ran the Friday evening quiz. The bridge results were as follows:
Fri pm - N/S Helen & Jane E/W Jane & Hazel
Sat am - N/S Gail & Tony E/W Jane & Hazel
Sat pm - N/S Richard & Nina E/W Muriel & Myra
Sun teams - Jane, Hazel, Rosemary & Norma
and the overall weekend champion was Helen who was presented with the Gina Fernall Cup.
|Last updated : 26th Oct 2019 11:40 GMT