Bracknell Bridge League
Release 2.19o
Results
BBL EoS Pairs
Director: Mick Green
Scorer: Mick Green
BBL EoS Pairs
Director: Alan Brown
BBL EoS Pairs
Director: Alan Brown

Welcome to the Bracknell Bridge League.


We have been been running a teams-of-four Bridge league in the Bracknell, Wokingham, Crowthorne, Camberley and Yateley area for more than 50 years and currently have three divisions in the League as well as a knockout handicap/pivot competition. New teams are welcome to join. Team members do not need to be EBU members, or members of a local club, to play in the league.  You do need a minimum of four players (preferably 5 or 6 to provide reserves), and a venue where you can host your home matches. Entries for the 2020/21 season are now closed, but if you wish to register interest in entering a team in the 2021/22 season or just receive more information on the league then please contact info.bbl@bridgewebs.com.

News
13th June 2021

Next Season & the AGM

Plans for next season were discussed at the Committee meeting held Tuesday 1st June.  Although it is possible that a return to face-to-face matches will be permitted by the time the new season starts, it is accepted that many players may wish to continue playing matches on-line. As a consequence, the Committee has drafted a proposal that, from next season onwards, the BBL becomes a ‘hybrid’ league in which matches may be played either face-to-face or on-line, subject to guidelines laid out by the league and to agreement between teams. Although it is anticipated that the majority of teams will choose to play their on-line matches on RealBridge, one or two clubs have indicated that they would prefer to remain on BBO, so both platforms will be permitted. The league has already opened a RealBridge account and will be happy to help teams arrange friendlies on that platform between now and the start of the season to enable them to become familiar with teams-of-four matches on RealBridge.

Club contacts have been sent the details of the proposed ‘hybrid’ approach, which may be found hereThis will be put forward for formal consideration at the AGM, to be held as a Zoom meeting on Thursday 1stJuly, starting at 3pm - calling notice, agenda etc will be forwarded to club contacts shortly.

13th May 2021

EOSP Evening

Under normal circumstances, tonight's event would start off with the award of trophies to the winners of the three divsions and Pivot Handicap cup for the 2020-21 BBL season, along with a few photos of team members for the history page on the website. Sadly, this year's event is online, so the best we can do is announce the winners/team members here.

  • Pivot Handicap Winners - Congratulations to the Ascot team of Mike Corfield (captain), Jennie Corfield, Bruce Franklin and Tony Solomons, who beat a team from Yateley BC.in the final
  • Division 1 Winners - Ascot L, who have won the Division 1 title for the very first time. Well done to John Fairhurst (captain), Keith Bennett, Andy Fry, Phil Brown, Nick Browne and Madeline Lawson. Runners up were Aerospace
  • Division 2 Winners - Congratulations to Yateley A, captained by Alan Brown with Michael Bader, Colin Bailey, Jo Brock, Jill Cook, Ian Lewis and David Steele. Runners up were Bradshaws.
  • Division 3 Winners - Camberley B. Well done to David Pinder (captain), Marion Simpson, Barbara & Neil Thomas and Alan Coales. Runners up were Ascot E.

Trophies have already been engraved and we hope to get these to you shortly.

Winners of the event were Andy & Michelle Margetts (Ascot) with an impressive 67.5% followed by Marceli Smialkowski & Andrzej Kwiatkowski (Bracknell Forest) who scored 61.3%. Full details of the hands, scores etc may be found here. Thanks to all 23 pairs who competed in the event and to Mick Green for directing. 

22nd January 2021

The Committee held its first meeting of 2021 recently, at which a small number of issues on the current BBL on-line rules were discussed following feedback. As a result, two minor changes have been made to the rules.

  • If, as the away team, you wish to exercise your choice of seating rights in a match, the away captain should take responsibility for setting up the match on BBO. This has come about after problems arose in a match where the home captain failed to set up as requested by the away captain, causing a delay as the match had to be restarted.
  • The up-loading of an on-line system convention card on BBO is only advisory and not mandatory, as stated in the current version of the rules. This change has been made to be consistent with EBU rules on the matter.  Players are also reminded that if they do up-load such a card, reference to it is not an acceptable alternative to alerting in the required manner.

The meeting also confirmed that UNDOs are not permitted either during the auction or the play. The committee acknowledges that this is now out of step with the B&B County Association who allow UNDOs during the auction in their Lo8/Lo4 matches, but felt that for consistency over the season, the BBL rules on this should not change. 

As you will know, the current rules allow on-line matches to be played over 18 boards as well as the usual 24, with the use of the appropriate IMPS-VPS conversion table, as available here. However, our attention has been drawn to the fact that raw IMPS are also used in cases where either a match is not played (and therefore has to be adjudicated) or where there is a tie between teams who finish their season with the same VPS and head-to-head result. In such cases the IMPS score from an 18 board match will be modified to that of an equivalent 24 board match, solely for the purpose of the adjudication or tie-break process.  The method of doing so is also outlined here.

In a normal season, the Committee is usually turning attention at this time of year to sorting out plans for the EOSP.  This year, the question is will the Covid situation be sufficiently over to allow players to meet without risk in a crowded hall for the event in May or June. Despite the fact that progress is being made in the vaccination process, the Committee’s view expressed at the recent meeting is that it is still very unlikely to be the case. The possibility of an on-line event was discussed and it was agreed that this should be looked at in more detail over the next few weeks, primarily to consider the logistics, cost and preferred platform for doing so. Whilst BBO seems the obvious choice because of the familiarity most have with that platform, the Committee felt that RealBridge might prove to be a more popular choice. For those of you who have yet to sample RB, it can simply be thought of as combining BBO (or BCL) with ZOOM, so providing much of the social contact that is very much part of an EOSP evening – without the presentation of trophies unfortunately.  A number of clubs in the area have switched to RB, including Ascot, Bracknell Forest, Oakingham and Woodley. Details may be found on the websites of these clubs to see if it possible for visitors/guests to sample RB.

Another matter not entirely unrelated to this is the position of on-line bridge in BBL for next season. Whilst most anticipate (or at least hope) that, by the time we get to October of this year, the Covid crisis will be sufficiently over to allow F2F matches again, there remains the question as to whether there is a  case for on-line bridge to continue in some form as part of the BBL season. There is little doubt that it has been a success this year and part of the attraction of playing on-line is that it negates the need for lengthy drives in the dark, depths of winter to unknown destinations.   The Committee will consider the role of on-line bridge within BBL for season 21-22 once the current season is over; part of that process will be to seek the views of clubs and players within the league.

If you have any questions or views on the issues raised above, please feel free to contact the league via info.bbl@bridgewebs.com. In the meantime the Committee would like to wish you all a Happy and safe New Year.

15th October 2020

The new on-line season got underway w/c 5th October, with a small number of matches played in each of the three divisions, mostly on BBO. Unfortunately, Bracknell Forest C withdrew from the league shortly after the fixture schedule was drawn up and published on LMS, so each division will contain 6 teams, playing 10 matches in the season.

The draw for the Pivot was made at a recent committee meeting. Details of contacts, handicaps and the draw have been sent to captains, who should note that results should now be entered via the website here  rather than through the EBU Knockout Management System. With only 8 teams entering this season there will one less round than usual and therefore more time to play matches. Advisory completion dates are the end of December, mid-February and the end of March for the three rounds. With the limited entry we are particularly keen to avoid any withdrawals, so please contact the BBL via pivotsec.bbl@bridgewebs.com if your team is having difficulty in raising a four, meeting the completion dates or if you have any other queries about the competition.

Foy Rees

It is with great sadness that we have to report that Foy Rees passed away recently. She would have been ninety this coming December. Foy played in the BBL and at several local clubs since the 1970s. She was a member of a very strong Ferranti team that often included her son, Tim, winning the league on more than one occasion in the 80s and 90s. Following the closure of Ferranti and the demise of the old Bracknell Bridge Club, Foy played most of her bridge at St Sebastians or Bracknell Forest, for whom she played in one of their league teams right up to the time of lockdown this March.

She will be sadly missed and we send our condolences to Tim and the rest of the family,

14th September 2020
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AGM and the 2020/21 Season

The 2019/20 season was brought to a conclusion recently with the final match played on-line between Ascot A and Ascot B, with the former winning 17-3, so securing the Division 1 title.  Many thanks to all those teams who played their part in bringing the season to a close by completing their remaining matches on-line. Congratulations to Ascot A, Aerospace and Crowthorne for winning their divisions and to Woodley for winning the Pivot. ..........

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7th August 2020
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Update on 2020-21 Season

Thanks to all clubs and teams for their response to the survey on the options for next season. We had feedback from 17 of the 18 teams currently in the league, with a further three replies from potential new teams. A sizeable majority expressed their concern about face-to-face matches even if government advice was favourable and most teams were happy to play on-line. ..........

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27th June 2020

BBL Season 20-21

Although we are still trying to complete the current season, your committee are now considering the best way to proceed for the new season, which we still hope to be able to start around the usual time of October. All team captains and club contacts are invited to take part in a short survey which will help the committee to decide on the best way to go for the next season. The survey has been sent to club contacts who should circulate this to team captains and encourage them to respond.  The club contacts should, if appropriate, also cater for the response of potential new teams or those who merge within the club.  The options open at present range from a full return to face-to-face (F2F) bridge, on-line matches, a combination of on-line and F2F, to a complete suspension of the BBL for an indeterminate period. Which route we go down depends not only on government advice on social distancing, but also on the views of the players who partake in the league. The committee also appreciates that many of the options may not be acceptable to some teams and we can reassure any team that wishes to take a season out that they will be awarded the same positions on re-entry as they (eventually) finish with this season.

Please complete and return the survey by the end of July. There are a number of ways captains can respond to the survey: directly to the secretary Ian Adnams, via your club contact or by downloading the form here, completing and returning it to the committee at info.bbl@bridgewebs.com.

12th May 2020
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BBL Secretarial Vacancy

After six years in the role, Ian Adnams has decided to end his tenure as BBL League Secretary at the end of this season. Under normal circumstances, the season concludes with the AGM followed shortly by the End-of-Season Pairs evening, neither of which has taken place because of the Covid-19 situation. In addition, there are still a number of matches to be played, so the season is far from over for the Committee and Ian has kindly offered to stay in post whilst we try to bring the 2019-20 season to a satisfactory conclusion. ..........

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12th May 2020
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Completing the 2019-20 season - Update

The BBL committee has decided to adopt a policy similar to that of the B&B County for completing the season, setting a date by which all league matches should be played. The deadline for playing any match is 31st August 2020. In keeping with existing rules, the result must be posted on LMS by the Friday following the match.  We hope that this approach will allow adequate time for teams to complete their matches either on-line or face-to-face. ..........

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17th April 2020
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Completing the 2019-20 Season

The BBL held a ‘virtual’ committee meeting recently to decide how best to complete the current season in light of the coronavirus situation. Although there are just 11 league matches still to be played, the questions of which team will win the league and which will be relegated from Division 2 still have to be answered. One option would be to curtail the season now and use the current standings as the final positions. ..........

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16th March 2020

Coronavirus and the BBL

As you would expect the Coronavirus is now impacting on the league matches.

To date a total of 11 matches across the three divisions and the pivot final are still to be played     

Whilst we have the mechanism within the rules to assign a result to unfulfilled fixtures the Committee has decided that we should extend the season to allow all fixtures to be completed - the duration of this extension cannot be predicted so we will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates directly to the Club Contacts and on the website.

Although the EBU now strongly recommends that county events are cancelled, the Committee has decided that a final decision on whether or not the EOSP goes ahead on the 6th May will be made at a later date. 

1st March 2020

Season 19-20: Promotion/Relegation

There appears to be some confusion on the number of teams to be promoted/relegated at the end of the season.   As reported under the 31st October ‘news’ item on the website (below), the committee decided to reduce the number from 2up/2down to 1up/1down for this season because of the reduction in size of each of the divisions. However, the highlighting on the EBU LMS league tables apparently led some teams to believe there had been no change. LMS has now been updated to be consistent with the new rule.

07 Feb 2020
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End of Season Pairs 2019/20.

The annual End of Season Pairs competition will take place on Wednesday 6th May 2020 at Ascot Bridge Club, Chavey Down, SL5 8RR.   The cost of entry will again be £6. ..........

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31 Oct 2019

Update of Rules

Following the reduction in size of the league for this season, the Committee has decided to introduce a more flexible approach to the number of teams to be promoted or relegated each season. The two-up/two-down policy that has been in place for many seasons has now been replaced by one-up/one-down, with the option of a second promotion/relegation at the discretion of the Committee, depending on the size of the division. Club contacts will be advised at the start of the season as to the policy in place for the season - for 2019/20 it will be just one-up/one-down. The League Rules have been modified to cover this and may be found under Rule 17 of  Match Management.

Team captains who regularly fail to submit the names of their players into LMS can be the bane of the Fixture Secretary's life, as failure to do so means a check cannot be made on appearances and Master Points cannot be awarded at the end of the season unless the Secretary chases captains for the information. At the discretion of the Committee, a 2 VP penalty can be imposed on persistent offenders, but the wording of the rule (11.1) meant that this could only be applied to the home team. This has now been modified to cover both the home and away teams.  Don't forget the rule also applies to the submission of the match result as well as the player's names.

An error in the cross-reference under rule 15.2.3 was also corrected. 

These changes were ratified at the recent Committee Meeting, held on 24th October. Minutes from the meeting have been uploaded to the website and may be found on the Minutes page (under League Governance).

25 Sep 2019

2019 / 2020 EoSP

The End-of-Season Pairs event for the forthcoming season will be held on the evening of Wed 6th May 2020. The venue will be St Martin's Church Hall, Chavey Down, North Ascot. Further details on the event and how to enter will be announced later in the season. The BBL Committee would like to express their thanks to Ascot Bridge Club for their help in arranging the evening.

10 Aug 2019
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2019 / 2020 Season

The BBL League fixtures and Pivot Draw are now live to view on LMS. Club contacts should by now have received a list of team contacts for the new season from the secretary Ian Adnams – please let Ian know by e-mail at sec. ..........

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20 Jun 2019
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2019 / 2020 Season

We are now accepting League and Pivot/Handicap Cup entries for the 2019/2020 season. 
The costs are unchanged from last season at £10.00 per team for the League, and £7. ..........

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BBL EoS Pairs

End of Season Pairs 2018/19

Well done Jennie & Bruce!!!

For Photos of the Season's winners, click HERE

21 May 2019
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The league held its AGM on 25th April – minutes of the meeting and those of the Committee meeting that preceded the AGM are now uploaded to the Minutes Page (under League Governance).  The Chairman, Bill Barclay, has resigned following his recent move out of the area, with Dave Lee replacing Bill as Chair. All other Committee members will remain in post for the new season. ..........

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04 Aug 18
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2018 / 2019 Season

The BBL League fixtures and first round Pivot Draw are now live to view on LMS.

As a result of our recent survey we are in the process of making some some changes to the League Rules, which will be updated on the Web Site shortly.  A brief summary follows below: 

First, the rule on playing for different clubs has been relaxed slightly. ..........

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13 Jul 18
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Leagues & Pivot

We are now accepting League and Pivot/Handicap Cup entries for the 2018/2019 season.

The costs are unchanged from last season at  £10.00 per team for the League, and £7. ..........

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13 Jun 18

BBL Minutes

Committee and AGM Minutes now uploaded to the Minutes page (under League Governance)

31 May 18

BBL End of Season Pairs

A total of 30 Pairs played in the End of Season Pairs event and results can be seen on this website

Well done to Marcelli & Bill for winning and to all those who took part.

Photo's have been uploaded and these are within the history tab

20 May 18
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BBL Survey April/May 18

A total of 67 individuals responded to the survey:  50 answered the survey for current players and 17 responded to the non-current player survey.  The Committee would like to thank all those who took the time and trouble to complete either survey.  A summary of the responses is on the League Survey page (also accessible from the menu on the left). ..........

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21 Feb 18
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End of Season Pairs 2017/18. The annual End of Season Pairs competition will take place on Thursday 31 May 2018 at Finchampstead Memorial Hall, The Village, Finchampstead RG40 4JU.  The cost of entry will again be £6. ..........

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26 Jan 18

A NEW BRIDGE MAGAZINE is a new, completely FREE, on-line magazine edited by Mark Horton. Contributors include: David Bird, Alan Mould, Larry Cohen, Alex Adamson & Harry Smith, Sally Brock, Julian Pottage, Liz McGowan and Kit Woolsey. It has been recently added to our links page or you can click: www.newbridgemag.com.


There was a Committee Meeting held on 12 October.  A copy of the Minutes is available to view here.