Virtual Clubs on BBO
Bury Athenaeum have set up an EBU Virtual Club with Bridge Base Online and invite you to play in events on Mondays at 7.15pm, Wednesdays at 1.45pm and Fridays at 10.00am. Mondays and Fridays are Standard Acol events. All events cost 3 BB$ (about £2.50) for which you need to set up your own personal account within BBO. You can do this by selecting BB$ from the button next to your BBO username (top right). You are eligible to enter provided you have added your BBO username to your membership details - this only needs to be done once and should be at least 24 hours before entering your first event. Once registered on Bury Athenaeum as a BBO user, you are able to enter any of our events.
Login to BBO at least 15 minutes before an event is due to start and enter the tournament. Your partner also needs to be online and one of you invites the other. There is an option to pay for both or pay independently.
- Monday and Friday events are 18 boards and take around 2 hrs 30 mins.
- Wednesday events are 21 boards and take around 2 hrs 30 mins.
The aim is to play 7/8 mins per board and all events are clocked.
A full explanation of how to join an event is given here. If you need a partner then 15 minutes before an event starts, use the BBO partnership desk. Login and follow the procedure described to find the event. Select the event and then select partnership desk from the top menu. If any members are already waiting, you have the option of inviting one to play. Alternatively, select I will pay for myself and hope that someone else will invite you. Members who have volunteered as reserves for a particular event should select Competitive then just wait until the TD either brings them to the table or advises that they are not needed.
These events are normally exclusive to members, though on occasion a single non-member pair or a pair of robots may be invited in, to avoid a sitout. Members who already play online are asked to encourage other members to join. Help is available for those who are new to online bridge. Please take part to make this viable and enjoyable for all.
EBU pay to play
You may not be aware of how the EBU is funded. For the past few years, rather than rely on individual subscription income they have been getting the bulk of their income from a scheme known as Universal Membership Subscription (UMS). Whenever players take part in a session at an affiliated club the club pays a small contribution (42p) to the EBU. All members of that club automatically become members of the EBU.
Since lockdown that income has dried up as no bridge clubs are operating face to face bridge.
The EBU have agreed the Virtual Club scheme with BBO so that affiliated clubs can play online tournaments comprising just their own members. Under the EBU scheme we are not able to charge any less than $3 so that is our standard charge, which is about £2.50. This charge is akin to table money. BBO retain $1 and $2 is paid to the EBU. This is about £1.66 of which 42p is retained as UMS and the remainder credited to the Athenaeum, around £1.24. So there is a benefit to the EBU and the Athenaeum - all helps to pay the bills during lockdown.
BBO is still free for those wanting to play social games.