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Welcome to Burnham Bridge Club
Online Leagues-of-8 2020/21

Burnham has two teams playing in online teams-of-8 leagues.

Charles Chisnall is captaining a team playing in Division 1 of the Berks & Bucks league. Nigel Lancaster is captaining a team playing in the Chiltern League, and this team plays its first match against Goring & Streatley this coming Thursday [22nd October].

Fixtures and results will be published in the Club's Calendar of events.

Hands of the Week [12 Oct 2020]


Another bonus week, with two hands from David Beever with a major theme in common, a second common point, plus an endplay on this hand which could be foreseen at trick one.

The major theme was the importance of spades

North led A, which introduces the second common theme - how often the lead of the Ace in your suit, which partner has supported, is a poor choice. After this lead, declarer can see a likely endplay if trumps behave.

North now switched to a club, taken in hand by declarer who led a trump, covering North's 9 with the 10, and taken by South with the Ace. South now led a second club, taken in dummy. It looked as if North had started with ♠Q9, so declarer cashed ♠K, followed by a spade to hand, and cashed K discarding a club from dummy. Now declarer exited with a club and claimed, as whichever defender took the trick had to concede a ruff and discard or find Q for declarer.

David Beever

Hands of the Week [12 Oct 2020]

Board 16 had similarities to its predecessor, and also provided an interesting lesson in when not to bid.

Note that East's 3 bid was a Bergen raise showing four trumps and 7-9 points.

West's 4 was a very poor bid [Ed: touch of sackcloth and ashes here]. Apart from anything else he has a very poor playing hand, with wasted values in short suits but, in addition, where are the spades? 4 will not be making, so he should let the opponents play in 4♣: there is a serious danger that, given another chance, they will find a spade fit.

Added to poor bidding, West now found the poor lead of A, enabling declarer to discard his diamond loser [more s & a].

David Beever

Members Win the Suffolk CBA Championship Pairs

Congratulations to Barry Read and Ilan Sirkis for their 'runaway success' in the Suffolk CBA Championship Pairs, held on 4th October via BBO. 50 Pairs played in the qualifying heats, from which the top 12 played in the 'A' final and the next 12 in the 'B' final.

Click the title for the Powerpoint presentation to Monday's pre-bridge seminar [21 September. 6:45 pm], when Charles Chisnall focused on defence, looking at what what the opponents' bidding has told us, what defensive strategy is indicated, and what opening lead we should make to get this ball rolling. As the play develops, our communication with partner is vital, and our signals are an essential component. Distribution signals, in conjunction with the bidding we've heard, help us work out declarer's exact shape. Attitude signals are an indication of where we hold, or indeed where we don't hold, useful values. Armed with a strategy and information on distribution and location of values allows us to make sensible decisions on the cards we can afford to throw away.

So, a problem to think about in advance of the seminar:

South West North East
1♠  Pass 1NT Pass
2  Pass Pass Pass

As West you hold

♠   x
♣   QJ10x

What is your thinking, and what would you lead?

There will be a Powerpoint presentation published on this website within a couple of minutes of the end of Charles' seminar. 

The seminar will be delivered via Zoom. You will receive an invitation from Graham Dickens automatically on Monday afternoon if you've attended a previous on-line seminar. If this will be your first, email Graham to be added to the distribution list.

Our seminars are free and open to all.

Seminar: Action over 1NT* - From All 4 Players

To see the notes from Charles' seminar, Seminar 1NTx Summary.ppt.

Here are three scenarios for you to consider ahead of the seminar. Assuming an opening 1NT is 12-14,


What would you do with the hand shown
1 ♠ Jxxxx   xxx   xx   ♣ xxx

if your LHO opens 1NT, partner doubles, and your RHO passes where

  • a) the pass forces a redouble?
  • b) the 1NT bidder can pass it out?
2 ♠ AQxx   AJx   xx   ♣ AQxx  if your RHO opens 1NT, you double, your LHO redoubles (showing a long suit), partner passes, opener rebids 2♣ (forced bid)?
3 ♠ Qxx   Kxxx    Qxx   ♣ xxx  

if your LHO opens 1NT, partner doubles, your RHO bids 2 ( and )?


Charles will be presenting the seminar via Zoom. If you've attended one of our previous Zoom seminars, you'll receive an automatic invitation from Graham Dickens. If you haven't, email Graham to ask him to add you to the list. We look forward to 'seeing' you on Monday.

Click May 25th seminar slides for slide copies with recommended bids appended as final two slides.

Teams-of-8 2019-20

This has been a unique season, for reasons with which we're all familiar. None of our three teams were able to complete their programmes.

Our A-team, playing in Berks & Bucks Division 1, came within three days of playing its final match. Three other Division-1 matches were not completed. As things stand, Burnham A tops the division.

Our B-team, playing in B&B Divsion 2, also finished the season with one match not played. Six other Division-2 matches were not completed. As things stand, Burnham B lies second in the division.

The B&B committee have urged teams to consider completing their programmes online, with a deadline of 31 July, but neither of our teams have elected to do this, and there is only one match planned as far as we know. After this date, the league secretary will utilise the relevant rules to allocate scores and finalise the league, which is likely to mean that the current order of teams will prevail, with corresponding promotions and relegations. At this stage no-one can say what form the league will take next season. 

B&B are intending to add a new rule which will allow a team to decline promotion for one year if it so chooses, which could be relevant for our B-team.

Our C-team, playing in the Chiltern League, lay in fifth position with two matches still to play when the decision was taken to freeze the league.

Burnham On-line From 13 April

Afternoon All,

Following up yesterday's news item, the Committee has decided to switch our weekly event from 7:30pm to 11:00am, at least for the time being [10:30am from 8 June].

We'll take a further view once the dust has settled, but we don't want to risk repeating last Monday's experience.

This virus has a lot to answer for!

Burnham On-line 6 April

We are very sorry we could not provide our usual Monday night bridge last night. 

As far as we can ascertain, this was because BBO was overwhelmed by the sheer volume of users who wanted to play at the same time as ourselves.  We weren’t the only club to have their 19:30 tournament disrupted.

The Burnham committee is working on an alternative start time for next Monday; we will announce the new start time as soon as a decision is made.We have every intention of maintaining our online presence in the existing format, because we understand that most of our members enjoy playing with people they know and have played with before.

Bridge Base Online is struggling with the huge increase in demand for online bridge; last night they were apparently faced with a record number of tables. One step they are taking is to restrict club events such as ours to a maximum of 20 tables, along with a stipulation that such events should have a start time no later than 3pm. Our BBO director claims that Monday is a particularly busy night on BBO, and that only events with a starting time between 7pm and 8pm really face a problem. We're continuing to monitor the situation.

Burnham Bridge Club On-line

We've been working together with SBBC to establish a platform via Bridgebase Online [BBO] for running our events on-line. Such events will be limited to SBBC members who've joined BBO and registered their BBO details with either Burnham or SBBC [or both]. We have added a field for you to supply your BBO username: click on Members Only, go to Account, scroll down until you see Online, select BBO, and enter your username in the BBO box.

The first Burnham event to be hosted on the new platform will be on Monday 30th; participation is open to all SBBC members.

A few notes about playing at BBO:

  • participation in EBU events is charged at $1 per session [of 12 boards]. This 'table money' is deducted automatically from your BBO 'wallet', so you must have charged up your wallet with at least $10. You don't need money in your BBO wallet unless you intend to play in events such as the EBU's for which a BBO charge is levied.
  • participation in events on our new platform will be charged at £3 per 18-board session: SBBC will monitor the sessions in which you participate and contact you approximately monthly to request you settle your account by bank transfer.
  • BBO events are listed in order of start time, the more imminent at the top. Only events due to start with the next two hours are shown.
  • once you're sitting at a table and play has commenced, you'll see a largish green window corresponding to your on-line bridge table, including your on-line bidding box.
  • irrespective of whether you're N, S, E, or W, you will be at the bottom of the table.
  • underneath the 'bridge table' you'll see a smaller window for 'chatting', bridge-related chatting that is.
  • you'll see a button that allows you to control with whom you're having a 'conversation': it may be the other three players at the table, it may be just your opponents, or it may be a 'private' chat with one opponent. You can't have a private chat with your partner. It's permitted to compliment an opponent on their play for example, but slagging off opponents or even partner is frowned on. Opponents may use a private chat to ask you to clarify your partner's bidding for example.
  • alerting/announcing is different in the on-line world. If you're about to make a bid that your partner would alert or announce in the face-to-face world, you will alert/announce before making your bid. Your partner will not see this, so it's advisable to alert/announce more often than usual, as a courtesy to your opponents.
  • At the end of an event, the highest level result you see is a ranking table with pair percentages. Pairs are identified by their BBO usernames, hence our request that you give yourself a recognisable name. If you click on a percentage, you'll see that pair's scorecard.You can drill down to get progressively more detailed information, probably including what players are wearing and what they had for breakfast. Our website Calendar items link to the BBO results. 
  • although not necessary for playing casual bridge, playing in an event requires that you and your partner have a convention card. BBO provides a handful of what they regard as standard cards, and you can start with one of those and edit it appropriately, before saving it under a name of your own. You can tie a particular card to a particular partner.
  • we're all on a steep learning curve here. We'll be providing more information as we assimilate it.

Can we ask all members to keep abreast of Coronavirus insomuch as it affects playing at the Centre by regularly checking with the relevant news item on the SBBC website.

Many thanks.

Anders Wallen

Many of our members will already be aware that Anders passed away in hospital on 5th March, following a severely debilitating stroke the previous week. In his time as a Burnham member, Anders had captained one of our league-of-8 teams, and of course he had served as both Treasurer and Chairman of Berks & Bucks CBA.

We would like to extend our deepest sympathy to Eva and her family.

Links to League-of-8 Tables

We've added a league-of-8 item to appear within the Results section of the website menu, principally to make it easier for members to  find out how our teams are doing.

At the end of this l-of-8 item are links to each of the three league tables in which our respective teams play.

Good Week for Burnham A

Our A team played away against Thame on Wednesday, and was pleased to secure a 17-3 win.

But surprise of the week was Friday evening's 14-6 defeat of bookies' favourite New Amersham A by Bourne End A, elevating Burnham to the top spot in the division for the first time in many years.

League-of-8 Underway

All three Burnham teams have opened their 2019-20 campaigns.

The A-team have played against both Ascot teams [B&B Divn 1], winning both matches. The B-team have also played two matches  [B&B Divn 2], losing their first to Loddon Vale but striking winning form against Maidenhead B. The C team has played one match [Chiltern League], beating Caversham Park.

All matches show in the website Calendar, and completed matches are included in the website presentation of results once results are uploaded.

Just a reminder: the Club plays in league-of-8 tournaments for the benefit of members. For any members who haven't already registered an interest in being involved, it's not too late: contact Club captain Nigel Lancaster.

League of Eight
At the end of the B&B CBA League of 8 2017/18 season our "A" team finished in 3rd place of Division 1, winning 6 and losing 2 matches with 1 match drawn. Similarly Burnham "B" finished 3rd in  Division 2, winning 6 and losing 3 matches.
Berks & Bucks sim pairs - Oct 14th

Berks & Bucks run a simultaneous pairs week once a year, whereby clubs around the county can elect to operate their normal pairs event within the sim pairs structure. So, in addition to our regular duplicate event being scored as a normal Club event, our results have also been merged with other clubs running the sim pairs event. Results are on the EBU website (use the Sims tab).  There is a booklet available for download from the Berks and Bucks web site, in which one of the county's strongest players provides a commentary on how the hands could (should?) have been bid and played.

Teams-of-8 2019-20

We'll be fielding three teams again in the upcoming season, the 'A' and 'B' teams playing in Berks and Bucks divisions 1 and 2 respectively, and the 'C' team playing in the Chiltern League.

Our aim is to provide the opportunity for all interested members to play in one or other team. The team captains are Nigel Marlow [A], Graham Dickens [B], and Nigel Lancaster [C].

Note that the 'C' team, being outside of the Berks & Bucks system, can accommodate members also playing in Burnham or other clubs' B&B teams.

Those members whose vacation or other commitments limit their availability are nonetheless welcome to play an appropriately restricted part.


Monday Evening Organisation

Our standard organisation for Monday evening is that we start play promptly at 7:30, play 26/27 boards, and finish at 10:45. In order for the Director to be able to start play at 7:30, the movement must have been entered into the computer, and boards[/movement cards] distributed, so he/she needs to know the number of participating pairs/teams by 7:25. If you know you won't arrive by 7:25, please notify either the Centre or your partner that you're on your way and your expected arrival time.

Club policy as validated by the recent members' vote is that 3-board sit-outs for pairs events are to be avoided and so, with a half-table, our standard movement will be based on 2-board rounds. Our Directors have been instructed that, once the movement for the evening has been selected, it should not be significantly changed to accommodate unnotified late arrivals, particularly where this might prejudice the prompt commencement of play.

Burnham Regains the Burnham/Ascot Trophy

The 29th annual team-of-24 match took place last evening [Thursday 15th August] between Ascot and Burnham.

Home advantage didn't prevail as our team of stalwarts regained the trophy. This is primarily a social event, very much enjoyed by all who take part. Still, coming home with the trophy adds a layer of icing to the cake.

The match details may be seen in the Results area on the right of this page.

Burnham AGM & Prize-giving


This year's AGM  and annual prize giving was held on June 10th.

 Competition Winners 2018-19








 Club Pairs

Chrys Poole &

Steve Lee


David Killick &

Nigel Lancaster


Bob Holder &

David Beever


 Teams of Four

 Gwen Stoneham Trophy

Nigel Wolfendale


Bob Holder


Chris Mooney


 League of 8

 Peter Hall Trophy

Charles Chisnall


Bill Godenzie





 Multiple Partners

 Addis Page Trophy

David Owen


Nigel Lancaster


David Beever


 Most Master Points Won

 Chairman’s Cup

Bob Holder


Evelyn Crossley


Nigel Marlow


 Most Improved Pair

 Raymond Worral Trophy

Sue Dickens &

Graham Dickens


Brenda Vitty &

Evelyn Crossley


Chrys Poole &

Steve Lee


Burnham C(hiltern) League-of-8 Team

The team completed its inaugural year in the Chiltern League with a 13-7 win away to Newbury A, leaving Burnham at the top of the division. Loddon Vale weren't able to manage the 20-0 victory needed in their final match to upset things [they lost 5-15].

Things have worked out pretty much as we'd hoped, providing opportunities for members who wouldn't otherwise have had the chance to represent the Club to take part. Some 15 members played for the team, with Colin Dale taking the role of administrative captain.

Thanks to all who've supported the Club in this venture: we hope that as many of you as possible will take part in the Chiltern Elimination Pairs heat at the Club on April 1st [see below].

Pre-Bridge Seminars in 2020

Starting in January we're switching our pre-bridge seminars from the first Monday of the month to the third. This is teams evening: whilst some of our seminar topics are equally applicable to both pairs and teams events, it's teams-oriented topics that will take priority for the next few months.

The first seminar of the New Year is on 20 January, entitled Hidden Signals - revealed by Charles Chisnall. We'll be publishing further details in due course. Make a note in your diary now - this is one seminar you can't afford to miss.

Berks & Bucks CBA Events


Burnham members have already featured in the initial  Berks & Bucks CBA competitions of the 2018-2019 season:

  • Heather & Matthew Tan won the Swiss Pairs for the Denys Jenkins trophy on 17th October 2018, with  David Owen & Bob Holder in joint 2nd place, Dick Davey & Paula Hopkinson in 4th place, and Liz Hayton & Angela Flintoft in 5th place
  • David Owen & Bob Holder were placed second in the Mixed Swiss Teams for the Carole Mueller Trophy held at Windsor on Sunday 11th November, after finishing 1st equal with a Butler score of 74 - leading the field by a clear margin of 25, the final result being determined from the head-to-head boards. Evelyn Crossley & Eva Wallen finished in 4th place. 
  • David Perkins & Phil Thornton playing with Carole & Herb Mueller were placed second in the Butler scored pairs for the Jarrett Cup held at Windsor on Sunday 2nd December.  As there was a 3-way tie for the 3rd place, this was awarded on the basis of the head-to-head tie-break results to Evelyn Crossley, David Owen, Bill  Godenzie & Charles Chisnall.
  • Charles Chisnall, David Owen, Bill Godenzie & Evelyn Crossley won the Perkins Cup in the teams event played at Windsor on 17th February, with Nigel Wolfendale, Bob Holder, Dick Davey & Paula Hopkinson taking second place.

Forthcoming competitions are:

  • The Senior Pairs for the Directors' Cup to be held at SBBC on 17th April 2019

About Burnham Bridge Club
About Burnham Bridge Club

We have twice weekly sessions of good standard Duplicate Bridge at the very attractive South Bucks Bridge Centre - a purpose-converted 16th Century barn in its own grounds, between Beaconsfield, Maidenhead and Slough 

Our main session is at 7.30 every Monday evening, when we play Pairs, except Teams of Four on the third Monday each month except when this is a bank holiday.  A host is available to play with anyone without a partner on Pairs evenings.

We use Bridgemates, for instant scoring, with current scores displayed on a large screen.  Hand records and results print-outs are available within a few minutes of the end of every session. 

Several teams from the Club compete in the Berks and Bucks League of 8, with the A team in the first division.  We also encourage less experienced players and hold monthly free seminars before the start of an evening session.

Monday Night Host

A host is available for all Monday evening Duplicate Pairs sessions,
so anyone coming along without a partner is guaranteed a game.  This service may be used by any player not more than 6 times in a calendar year.

This does not apply for teams evenings or special events- check the calendar



Goring & Streatley v Burnham
Cross-Imped Pairs
Director: BBO
Duplicate Pairs
Director: BBO
Duplicate Pairs
Director: BBO
Duplicate Pairs
Director: BBO
Seminar at 6:45/Cross-Imped Pairs
Director: BBO
Mon 26th Oct 2020
Duplicate Pairs
BBO 7.25 pm
Mon 2nd Nov 2020
Duplicate Pairs
BBO 7.25 pm
Mon 9th Nov 2020
Duplicate Pairs
BBO 7.25 pm
Mon 16th Nov 2020
Cross-Imped Pairs
BBO 7.25 pm
Mon 23rd Nov 2020
Duplicate Pairs
BBO 7.25 pm
Mon 30th Nov 2020
Duplicate Pairs
BBO 7.25 pm