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Duke of Edinburgh skill or service
Duke of Edinburgh skill or service

Are you doing DoE at your school? Do you need your bridge 'skill' signing off?


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".

New school year 2018-2019
New school year 2018-2019

This has been an exciting week starting the new year. We have held taster sessions at Badgemore and Trinity Primary Schools in Henley, as well as at Nettlebed, Crowmarsh,Sonning Common and Marcham, so all their bridge clubs are up and running with a keen group of year 5s and 6s. There are many more schools starting again in the next few weeks, but there are so far approximately 150 Oxfordshire children playing, which suggests that the total will rise to 300 or so. Apart from the weekly sessions in schools, there are at least three training days and competitions planned in January, February and March, by which time they will be experts! It is a delight to see the bridge clubs as part of the school culture in those where it has been established for up to nine years, since both the children and the volunteer helpers all enjoy themselves. There are also more children being welcomed into the local bridge clubs, reducing the average age of the players, as they improve and seriously increasing the biscuit consumption.

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:45 BST
The Young Bridge Challenge April 4th 2017

More pictures from the Young Bridge Challenge held at Loughborough on April 4th 2017








Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:59 BST

Never work with children or animals” – whoever thought of that one? Whomsoever it was had never run a Junior Bridge Club or an end of term competition for 8 to 12 year olds, with a heavy imbalance of males!

What fun and what joy we ‘middle aged’ volunteers experienced as Summertown Church Hall filled up with 21 eager children (17 boys and just four girls) on the afternoon of Sunday 19th March.

With ten ‘bidders’ and eleven mini-bridgers, tables were hastily made up with adults, and scorer, Diane Coe gave Holly Kilpatrick, TD, the correct movement. Meanwhile at the Mini bridge end of the room, the cry went up all too soon: “Please Ma, we’ve already played these hands……” More juniors were arriving – did we have enough tables? Would we have enough tea? Were enough Easter eggs hidden in the church hall garden?? Another latecomer……another table; thank goodness, a parent clutching cakes, the tea problem temporarily solved.

“Director Please! Lead out of turn and a revoke” “Really……?” (misunderstanding of the meaning of revoke……!

“Director Please! (from the mini-bridge end?) This hand is badly sorted” – “Really? Ah, I see, each player seems to have thirteen cards of the same suit.” No problem, Anthony Harris has adopted pragmatism and has turned it into a lesson: “Now then, who is most likely to win this contract??”

More movement problems with the mini bridgers; “Quiet please, who are pair 5?” – up shot four hands. “Are you sure”? Help! where are the table slips;” “I think our pair number changed when we moved for the first round Ma…”

“Have you a key to the kitchen, Holly? The door has locked itself.” No key and we are locked away from the Easter feast , the prizes and 48 sausage rolls browning themselves in the oven! No problem, Clare jumps on a chair and climbs through the hatch, nobody notices. Another call from the bidding end “Are we playing Teams or Pairs Ma?”

Finally, we call a halt to proceedings; time for the egg hunt. They may be outnumbered but the girls’ eyes were sharper and Easter eggs were scooped up in record time while everyone descended upon the groaning tea table.  Miraculously, we seemed to feed everyone, young and older, while Diane feverishly calculated a ‘fair’ result for both sections.

CONGRATULATIONS to all the juniors who joined us on that Sunday afternoon! The hall exuded the usual good humour and bonhomie generated by youth and, on this occasion, winning simply wasn’t important!

Alas, there was no time to take photos but it really did happen.

Holly Kilpatrick

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:59 BST
5th annual junior competition
5th annual junior competition
  • This was held at Roke on yet another sunny Sunday in February and was attended by 28 children from nine schools. There were 5 tables playing minibridge and 3 tables of bridge players.
  • The results were. Bridge 1st Max Potter and Freddie Beneat, 2nd Thomas and Jacob Potter
  •                           Minibridge, 1st Sam Soonawalla + adult, 2nd Charlie Lutyens-Humfrey and Alex Byrne, 3rd Amelia Beecroft and Harry Ellis.
  • As usual, the food was excellent, all home cooked and provided by volunteers, and the children were able to play outside in the(chilly) sunshine during their break. For most of the minibridge children, it was the first time that they had played 10 hands at a time, and they rose to the occasion magnificently. The bridge players, despite being very young, are an experienced lot and thought nothing of their 15 hands.
Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:52 BST

Oxfordshire's James Paul played in the Under 26 Team which came 4th from 18, whilst Freddie Illingworth and Laura Covill played in the Under 21's who came 13th from 16 in Tromso Norway in July

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:51 BST
Marcham Primary Pro-Am 2017


The End of Term Pro-Am was once again a great success.


Joint winners were:


Lara Withers (a winner last year) and Martha Kingsbury.


The competition was ably directed by Dave Walton, and 10 children participated.


Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:43 BST
OJBC Winter Competition November 2016



20th November 2016


The second Oxford Junior Bridge Club Competition was held at the Oxford Bridge Club on the afternoon of Sunday 20th November when twenty-five children, aged 9 – 15 years, descended upon the balloon decorated premises, generating laughter and good will. The juniors came from a variety of schools around the city and county and from as far afield as Sonning Common, Reading and the Midlands!

Congratulations to our scorer, Diane Coe and TDs, Mike Fletcher and Peter Sherry, who managed to keep boards and children moving, in spite of the speed differentials and the cross table chatting! and thanks to David Bygott for all the competition photos.

This year we merged the experienced bidders with the novices and awarded prizes in both sections. 

The mini-bridge players (left) might have been low in numbers but were high in enthusiasm and played eight boards from a recent simultaneous pairs competition. Two young entrants have only been learning for four weeks!


At 4.15 p.m. we called a halt and everyone descended upon the tea table, groaning with goodies, mostly donated by parents, many of whom joined us for tea, while Diane feverishly attempted to get a result.

When presenting the prizes, organiser, Holly Kilpatrick warmly thanked the Chairman and Trustees of the Oxford Bridge Club, who had kindly given their premises free of charge. In the mini-bridge section, first prize went to Carl Shelley, whom, although playing with an adult, had played all the hands and chosen the contracts.  In the novice bidders section our winners were Jennifer Ellis and Jacob Hathaway from Sonning Common.

In the “experienced” bidders section first prize went to Richmond Yeung and Inigo Sanchez-Asiain from the Dragon School.   Some of the results were extremely close and congratulations to all the children who took part. Full results are listed below:




1st Richmond Yeung and Inigo Sanchez Asiain

2nd Megan Jones and Henry Rose



1st Jennifer Ellis and Jacob Hathaway

2nd Jacob Potter and Freddie Beneat



1ST        Carl Shelley

2nd       Freya Cook and Louisa Alvey

3rd        Harry Litchfield and Zach Matthews

4th        Merlin Kavanna and Hanmer Hanbury


Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:43 BST

The fourth Oxford Junior Bridge Club competition was held at Oxford Bridge Club on the afternoon of 3rd February, when forty-four childrem, aged  8-16 years, descended upon the elegantly refurbished premises, generating laughter and goodwill. The juniors came from near and far for this event.

Congratulations to our scorer, Lisa Furnival and TDs Mike Fletcher and Peter Sherry, who managed to run three sections and to keep the boards and children moving. The four tables of mini-bridge players were high in enthusiasm and, in some cases, low on experience! The winners, Olivia Zamora and Isabella Bravo, had only been playing for a week! Second place went to Emily McAndrew and Martha Ward, who had been playing for two weeks!

Novice bidding winners, Lawrence Crean and Thomas Rice achieved a staggering 80.56%, more than 16% more than the second pair, Daniel Bruce and Grace Harrison. James Cater and Theo Sinclair just pipped Zane Soonwalla and Freddie Beneat to top position in the Advanced Bidding section scoring 70.83% and 69.17% respectively. WELL DONE TO ALL OF THEM.

At 4.15.p.m. we called a halt and everyone descended upon the tea table, groaning with goodies, mostly donated by parents, many of whom joined us for tea, while Lisa and Mike feverishly attempted to get a result.

When announcing the winners, organiser, Holly Kilpatrick warmly thanked the Chairman and Trustees of Oxford Bridge Club, who had kindly given the beautiful premises free of charge. Pat Lewis, Chairman of OBC, presented the prizes.

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:48 BST
Ardingly Summer Camp 2016

Some Oxfordshire players attended the first of the Bridge Summer Camps this year. As you can see it was not all hard work as there was time for a refreshing break.



Aidan Saunders and Zane Soonawalla received their medals for being ‘best in their group’.



Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:42 BST
Loughborough Schools Day



28th February 2015

On Saturday 28th February six members of the Oxford Junior Bridge Club travelled to Loughborough Grammar School for the Annual Schools Challenge.  The team of four: Max Potter, William Wauchope, Henry Rose and Theo Rich were up against fierce and mature competition in the form of sixth formers from St Paul’s, Westminster, Haberdashers, and older pupils from Oxford Girls High and other prestigious schools! During the afternoon, they were required to bid and play 30 hands of bridge, with only a short supper break. Not only did they play well, they remained courteous and cheerful to one another and their competitors throughout! Thomas Potter, our team reserve, stepped in for the last round of six hands. Our team of x 4 finished an amazing 10th out of 13 teams.

The team from Oxford Girls High finished in 8th place, which was much higher than they expected.

Thomas Potter, playing with his 7 year old brother, Jacob, won the separate mini-bridge competition.



Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:50 BST
OBA competition and EBED student Sims

This was held at Roke on 22nd March. Five tables of bridge players and three of minibridge players took part from 16 schools in the area. It was particularly good to see so many year 7 and upwards children, who had started playing at their primary schools, present. The hands played were from the EBU student Sims and results can be seen on the EBU (English Bridge Union) website. Click on 'Sims, past events , education bridge or minibridge to find your results. Prizes were kindly presented by Richard, Earl of Macclesfield.

The results from the Goring, Sonning Common/KE and Nettlebed heats can also be seen there. Well done to all of you.

The winning national student pair were Arthur Anstis and Cameron Butcher of Wallingford BC, whilst  Jacob Potter & Aidan Saunders finished third nationally in the minibridge competition

For more information and pictures see the 'Third OBA Annual Junior Congress' tab to the left.

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:49 BST
Reading School vs St Paul's
  • Club/Reading School Anthony Euan
  • Reading School David Ed
  • Reading School Dom Will
  • Reading School Jack Nathan

On 17th January a team of 8 Reading schoolboys travelled to London with their teacher, Judy Honikberg, to play against St Paul's School. Many of the the Reading Boys have been playing, when school work permits(!), at Reading Bridge Club, where they have halved the average age some nights. The match was played over 20 hands as 2 teams of four. All the boys played magnificently, but in particular on one hand, one Reading pair bid and made 7 No Trumps, whilst the other Reading pair bid to 7 Hearts which failed on a 5-0 split. Neither St Paul's pair bid a slam, probably due to vigorous interference bidding by the Reading boys. The final result was 86 IMPs to Reading with no negative scores, which was a stunning result. 

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:53 BST
Joan Bennett receives the Tom Bradley Award
Joan Bennett receives the Tom Bradley Award



Congratulations to Joan Bennett who has been awarded the Tom Bradley Award

This award is presented in memory of former Board Member and EBU Treasurer Tom Bradley and is given to a non-serving school teacher who has made a significant contribution to junior bridge.

The schools bridge programme was an idea that Joan formulated in the summer of 2009. Joan sold her accountancy practice and retired from business. At the same time she retired from coaching synchronised swimming and looked for a new outlet for her energy and enthusiasm. She decided she wanted to help increase the number of bridge players by concentrating on teaching bridge to school children. She attended the Partner Teacher course at the EBU and soon after was appointed as the teacher at the local sixth form college who wished to add bridge to its sixth form enrichment programme. Joan worked from the set EBU teaching hands for Minibridge and Bridge and felt she could use the approach at Primary Schools.

She recruited volunteers to join her and, with the help of Alison Nicolson, developed two one day teaching courses which allow a volunteer to gain confidence in their ability to teach minibridge and bridge to school children. With the help of the EBU the first twenty volunteers were trained, and a application to lottery fund allowed the purchase of two dealing machines, a thousand boards and packs of cards.

Joan is for ever seeking to expand the list of volunteers and has persuaded Berkshire & Buckinghamshire CBA and Oxfordshire BA to share the funding of future courses for volunteers. They also set aside budgets to support the more general expenses of running the project. The county sponsorship has meant that events, including minibridge sims competitions, have been run free of charge with the counties paying the rent and the refreshments. As the project has grown the positive experiences of head teachers means that new schools are actively seeking the chance to take part. Ofsted has been very positive about all of the school bridge clubs.

Joan has further expanded the scheme into Hertfordshire and Dorset, with more targets in sight. There are 100+ volunteers and some claim that their own game has improved as a result. There have been very few schools or volunteers drop out, and nearly all the large number of volunteers and pupils involved thoroughly enjoy the experience.

Joan is pictured receiving the award from Michael Byrne.


Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:39 BST
English Bridge Educational Trust- EBED
English Bridge Educational Trust- EBED

We were awarded a grant from the trust worth £2500 to cover the purchase of 500 new boards and 1000 packs of cards in December 2012. This will enable us to continue to support new schools with pre dealt hands from the EBU minibridge teaching hands.The original purchases, together with two dealing machines, were financed by a lottery grant to the Chiltern League in 2010.We are also supported by the Berks,Bucks and Oxon associations- effectively local players.   

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:39 BST
Duke of Edinburgh awards
Duke of Edinburgh awards

George Anstis and Lizzy van der Veen have completed their silver award using bridge as their skill, and are both continuing bridge towards their gold award. Scarlett Anstis has obtained her bronze award. Congratulations to all three of them.

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:38 BST
OJBC Winter Competition Nov 2015

The average age of the Oxford Bridge Club attendee was lowered dramatically on the afternoon of Sunday 22nd November when thirty children, aged 8 – 18 years descended upon the balloon decorated premises generating laughter and good will. With roads closed in the city centre, the A40 permanently jammed and both Banbury and Woodstock Road roundabouts “under re-construction,” it was a miracle to see so many children actually arriving from different parts of the country, including Cheltenham and Reading.

With three sections to run, mini-bridge, novice bidders and experienced bidders, an accolade must surely go to our scorers and TDs, Diane Coe, Mike Fletcher and Peter Sherry, who managed to keep boards and children moving, in spite of the speed differentials of players and the cross table chatting!

At 4.15pm, we called a halt and everyone descended upon the tea table, groaning with goodies mostly donated by parents, many of whom joined us for tea, while the scorers feverishly attempted to get a result.

The prizes were presented by Richard Sills, Chairman of the Oxford Bridge Club, who had kindly given us their premises free of charge. In the mini-bridge section, first prize went to the Reading siblings, Jacob and Alice Hathaway (in spite of one of them trumping the other’s ace!!!) In the novice bidders section our winners were John Wood and Freya Baldwin and in the “experienced” bidders section first prize went to the Anstis brothers, Arthur and George.  Some of the results were extremely close and congratulations to all the children who took part. Full results are listed below:


George and Arthur Anstis                                                          +34

Megan Stanton-Cole and Alison Withers-Green (adult)                 +2

Max and Thomas Potter                                                              -2

Freddie Yu and Richmond Yeung                                                 -34



1st        John Wood and Freya Baldwin                    59.72%

2nd       Max Cronin and Karla Maria Unwin              51.39%

3rd        Natalie Kong and Diana Cai                        50%

            Freddie Beneat and Zane Soonawala           50%

            Thomas Eadie and Rachel Wills                   50%

6th        Sally Hung and Cecelia Su                           48.61%

7th        Jacob Potter and Aidan Saunders                 45.83%

8th        Jennifer Reynolds and Ava Reynolds            43.75%



1ST        Jacob and Alice Hathaway                                         +10

2nd       Zach Matthews and Harry Litchfield                              +8

3rd        Clemmie and Edmund Fry                                             +6

            Bruno Keyworth playing with Sean Terry (adult)            +6

Picture gallery:

Richard Sills, Chairman of the OBC,  presents prizes to winners of the three sections:






More pictures of the action at the tables:








Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:41 BST
Abingdon BP Swiss pairs

George Anstis and Lizzy van der Veen played 36 hands in 5 hours on Sunday 8th February 2015 and both received prizes. The entry contained a lot of VERY good players and George, playing with his grandfather, came 27th from 40. Very well done.

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:40 BST
EBU Spring Sims 2014
EBU Spring Sims 2014

During March each year schools and clubs play the same hands of cards in different places. These are called 'Sims'. As they are all playing the same hands, they can be scored nationally when they are put together.
This year, Berks, Bucks and Oxon did fantastically well as the results show below.
BRIDGE- 219 pairs
4th George and Arthur Anstis Wallingford
11th George Cooper and Joan(adult)
MINIBRIDGE -60 pairs
1st Lynne Puddifoot & Jamie Arlott Faringdon
2nd Lewis Crossley & Aaron McNeille Elangeni Amersham
4th Caitlin Nugent & Ellie Vockins Nettlebed
6th Rutendo Ganga & Mia Wright Faringdon
7th Katie Jarvis &James Wilson Wallingford
9th Elizabeth Cooper & Jemima Smith Kidmore End
10th Ishaan Chaudhury & Mathew Stan Wallingford


Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:38 BST

Freddie Illingworth formerly of The Dragon School and MCS, and now an undergraduate at Cambridge has just been awarded the title of young player of the year by the EBU. He is a member of the England Under 20 team and played in China, France, Netherlands, Ireland Denmark and Poland.
He first joined the Under 20 squad when he was 13-even though he only had a basic knowledge of bridge, he soon picked new things up every time he attended a training weekend and went from strength to strength. The opportunity of playing a lot of hands, combined with learning about new bidding systems improved his bridge no end, and the chance to make new friends and play with and against different people his own age is a huge benefit.
The great thing about the Under 20 squad is that it is open to everyone-even very new players who have only just started. There is NO minimum standard and everyone is welcome to come and have a go.
Anyone interested should contact the squad leader Michael Byrne on

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:35 BST
Results from 24th February 2013
Results from 24th February 2013

At the First Oxfordshire Junior Congress, held on 24th February at Roke, Oxfordshire, the following children came joint first:



George Cooper and Louis Johnson, Kidmore End Primary School;  Kayleigh Smith and Beth Summers, Charlbury Primary School.


Roos Goette Hoosch and Carla Russell, Nettlebed Primary School;  Henry Neal, Kidmore End Primary School

For a full report with pictures click on the link to the First Junior Congress in the left hand panel. On some PCs and ipads it may be necessary to click on the Home Page link first. 





Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:35 BST
Cookham May 2013

On 21st May 5 tables of children played in an end of year bridge competition. They came from Cookham, Downley High Wycombe, and St Peters Marlow.

The joint winning pairs North South were Leon Bennett and Bradley Powell from Downley and Will Reeve +adult from Cookham with 66%.

The East West winners were James le Fleming and Jon Tindal from Cookham with a remarkable 91%.

The children all left with badges and goodies having enjoyed the spice of competition that made the day different from a routine session, Many of them are year 5s and will be returning in the Autumn.

Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:34 BST
Simultaneous Pairs March 2012
  • March Roke2
  • March Roke
  • March Sims



Children and volunteers from Oxfordshire and Berkshire at the March 2012 heats of the English Bridge Union minibridge simultaneous pairs in Roke and Henley.




Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:32 BST
House of Lords Visit July 2012
  • House of Lords
  • Joan Bennett with Stoke Row children on the Terrace
  • Kidmore End at house of Lords

Baroness de Souza with Amersham children in the river room before playing against their lordships. (top)

Joan Bennett with Stoke Row children on the terrace with the London Eye in the background. (middle)

Pupils from Kidmore End. (bottom)


Last updated : 22nd Jul 2021 12:31 BST