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Cheddar History
Origins of Cheddar Bridge Club

Recollections of Sue Spink (Weissen)

Just some recollections of when my husband John Weissen and I first came to Cheddar:

We arrived in October 1971 with our 6 month old baby Robert.  We had been running an afternoon bridge club at St George’s Hill Tennis Club, Weybridge, very posh. So we were looking for both a bridge and tennis club. 

As far as I can remember we quickly joined the Cheddar Tennis Club which incidentally is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year (2024)

Then I am sure we joined the Cheddar Bridge Club which I would have little doubt was established at the time.  So its 50 year anniversary would probably be well and truly done and dusted by now (2024).

I can remember a Clem, an Alan, husband of a teacher at the Kings of Wessex, Phyllis, Helen Batt’s mother, an Enid, who owned a large strawberry farm between Draycott and Rodney Stoke, a Colonel who lived in a bungalow on the hill in Wedmore, who must have played at Cheddar as I did not know of the Wedmore Bridge Club in our early years in Cheddar, although I remember playing at the George Hotel, Wedmore.  Also a large lady who lived in West Lynne and her friend who lived in the Manor House on St Andrews Road,  Suzanne Metters was an early member and  Sue Gudgeon and Malcolm were Chairman at one time and I would have thought would have some early recollections. 

I do remember that at one time we used the British Legion premises well before we were at the Wishing Well tea rooms.   Also sometime in the 80s, I think it was a joke that you could play bridge at Cheddar on Monday and Wednesdays, at Winscombe on Tuesday and Fridays, at the Birchfield Hotel Weston, on Thursday and Saturday and in Burnham on Sundays.  

There was a woman in a wheelchair who played everywhere and said it made such a difference to her life.  We were invited and joined Jean and Roy Lowe at the Birchfield for their Wedding celebrations, so must have known them quite well.  Really fun. 

Hope some of that helps to establish at least 50 years of the Cheddar Bridge Club.  I feel that early members of the tennis club would have been interested in a local bridge club over their 100 years. 

Postscript

Contributed by Gillian Toogood after discussions with Barbara Biggin, Sue Spink, Gary Langdale and Jean Lowe.

Cheddar was a thriving bridge club when Sue joined around 1971.  Venues and the names of early members are listed below.

Cheddar venues from 1971:  British Legion Hall, Wishing Well (1981) and Catholic Hall.

Early members:  Enid Percival (Teacher), Barbara Biggin, Sue Walton, Sue Spink and John, Gary Langdale, Joy Jerram, Muriel Woodhouse, Edna Chitty, Doris Sims, Anna Kindersley, Mervin Speed, Fred Laidler, Pat Bushell, Sheila, Joy Thronger, Effie Binning, Suzanne Metters, Bob and Carol Jepps, Phylis Boswell, Caroline and Brian Ladd, David Ladd, Christine Lewis, Nick and Audrey Nichols, Joan and Norman Lisby, Vera Golf, Brian Lewis, Clement Dew, Margaret Duckett, Jean and Roy Lowe, Anne Skinner, Malcolm Scard, Sue Gudgeon, Liz and Jim Sims, Alison Smith, Anne McElroy, Jack and Elizabeth Saunders, Celia Bishop, Richard Virgo, J Barnes, Doris Stokes, Alan Netherclift, Eileen Moore-Boyle