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IOM Congress
congress 2017
congress 2017
congress 2017
congress 2017
Fred's report

The 49th annual Isle of Man Bridge Congress was held at the Palace Hotel from 4th to 6th September. It was a bigger event than for some years with 19 of the best locals contesting a range of events against  56 high quality visiting players. It was a particularly successful Congress, well organised by Liz Kelly as always, and, whilst most of the top prizes went overseas, there were some strong local performances.

Pick of the locals was grand master Erika Slatcher who, with partner, England senior international John Holland, won the Mixed Pairs event on day one (see photo). Also on day one, best locals in the Open Pairs were Andy Elliott and Steve Baggs who achieved 4th place.

The Teams of Four competition was won by the Manchester-based foursome of Croswell, Thrower, Mackay and Myers. (Most of whom were in the winning team from last year). The highest placed locals were John Large, Andy Elliott, Stephen Baggs and Andrea Knox. They were 7th.

The main event of the weekend was the gruelling 3-session Swiss Pairs which concluded on the final night. The winners, by the closest of margins, were visitors Stuart Davies and Paul Belsten - they had a particularly successful weekend, having already won the Open Pairs. Paul De Weerd and Bernard Palmer turned in the best local performance with a remarkably good 4th place.

As usual, John Pyner was tournament director and he presided over the Congress with his usual cheerful efficiency. Planning has already begun for next year's Congress, the 50th, which promises to be a bit special.

2014 congress
2014 congress

Thank you to all who took part in this years congress

Special thanks to John and Maggie Pyner for all their hard work 

Almost 50 people travelled from overseas to take part and they were able to see our beautiful Island at it's best in glorious sunshine.

It would be lovely to see more locals take part in next years congress which is always the first weekend in September so please keep that weekend free

Congratulations to Jenny Glanz and Neil Kelly, pictured above with organiser Liz Kelly, who won first prize in the mixed pair


Congress 2012 swiss pairs winners
Congress 2012 swiss pairs winners
Congratulations to Janet and Ted Latham from Harrogate
Congress mixed pairs 2nd place
Congress mixed pairs 2nd placeCongratulations to Jean Squires and Neville Shorrock who won the competition, unfortunately the photograph is too blurred to publish, but here's one of the Paul DeWeerd and Erika Slatcher who were runners up
mixed/open pairs 2011 results
Rank Pair Names Total Max Score% LPs
1 12 Paul Darby & Simon Gottschalk 355 520 68.27 96
2 14 John Herbert & Dawn Herbert 328 520 63.08 84
3 8 Stuart Clarke & Bill Carr 310 520 59.62 72
4 17 Jim Hay & Diccen Sargent 309 520 59.42 60
5 4 Roger Rawcliffe & Elizabeth Rawcliffe 304 520 58.46 48
6 16 Sheila Evans & Bill Blackman 301 520 57.88 36
7 20 John Stewart & Maureen Curry 299 520 57.5 24
8 13 Steve Wright & Anne Wright 286 520 55 12
9 22 Stephen Baggs & Rosemary Baggs 268 520 51.54  
10 18 John Arnold & Doreen Arnold 267 520 51.35  
11 3 Mary Vokins & Neil Kelly 261 520 50.19  
12 2 Barrie Harrison & Mary Harrison 260 520 50  
13 19 Margaret Sayers & Derek Sayers 255 520 49.04  
14 10 Yvonne Bain & Erika Slatcher 247 520 47.5  
15 9 Bill Gardner & George Pilcher 238 520 45.77  
16 6 Sue Woodcock & Nick Woodcock 231 520 44.42  
17 15 Paul de Weerd & Edith Tomlinson 226 520 43.46  
18 7 Gloria Smith & Liz Kelly 220 520 42.31  
19 5 Janet Slinger & David Slinger 211 520 40.58  
20 21 Deryk Ainsworth & Helen Ainsworth 207 520 39.81  
21 1 Marie O'Sullivan & Joan Watson 201 520 38.65  
22 11 Jan Holland & Jo Storrs 136 520 26.15  
Congress report by Fred Kissack


The 53rd Annual Isle of Man Bridge Congress was held over the weekend 13th to 15th September at the Cushag Suite in the Palace Hotel. Run, as always, by the Manx Bridge Union, it attracted a quality field of entrants from around the British Isles. Locals also competed and gave a particularly good account of themselves.


The principal competition was the Swiss Pairs event, played over 3 evening sessions for the Tynwald Trophy. Thirty-four pairs competed and it was closely fought right to the last hand of the third session, with a strong Manx interest throughout. In the end, there was a tie at the top of the leader-board, with John Large (Chairman of the Manx Bridge Union) and his partner, visitor Richard Pike, sharing the honours with two other visitors, (but regulars),  Stuart Davies and Paul Belsten. Also in contention to the end and sharing fourth place were locals Andy Elliott and Paul DeWeerd.  More locals Steve Baggs and Justin Corfield took seventh spot. All in all, a really good showing by some of our top players against class opposition.


In the Swiss Teams event, played over two afternoons for the Keys Cups and featuring 14 teams, the principal honours were taken by visitors. The winning team of four comprised Heather Hobson (actually Manx -born, so we will claim her), Roy Garthwaite, Carole Kelly and Geoff Kenyon. The second-placed team included one local player, Jascha Garre, and the top wholly Manx team came third - Tadhg O'Mahony, John Large, Steve Baggs and Justin Corfield. Again MBU members did well.


The warm-up events, before the main competitions, were the single-session Mixed Pairs and Open Pairs. The Mixed was won by Carole Kelly and Geoff Kenyon and the Open by Stuart Davies and John Large (the local with the most success to celebrate)


The photograph shows play in progress at the Congress.


Apart from the Congress, the Manx Bridge Union is continuing to encourage new entrants into the game and the Bridge for Beginners course for 2019/20, being run under the auspices of the Isle of Man College, is getting under way. Anyone interested in joining the course and getting to know how to play bridge should contact the Isle of Man UCM 648200




13-15 SEPTEMBER 2019

A Green Pointed County Congress

With Cash Prizes

To be held at the

Best Western

Palace Hotel and Casino


The Palace Hotel & Casino has a limited number of rooms available for those attending the Congress. Early booking is necessary:

£54 - room only per night

£62 - room with breakfast, one person per night

£70 - room with breakfast, two people per night

The Hotel does sometimes offer other special rates that may be available at the time of booking

Phone 01624 662662 to reserve your room

Useful links

Sponsored by:

Vortigern Ltd.


First for Bridge


Congress Programme

Friday 13 September

2:00 pm

mixed/open pairs

7:15 pm

Swiss Pairs Session 1

Saturday 14 September

1:30 pm

Swiss Teams Session 1

7:15 pm

Swiss Pairs Session 2

Sunday 15 September


Swiss Teams Session 2

7:00 pm

Swiss Pairs Session 3

10.30 pm

Trophy Presentation



Player 1______________             ___________________


EBU No:__________

Address _______________________________________________________


Telephone        __________________              

 E-mail                _____________________

Player 2______________             ___________________   

EBU No: _________

Player 3______________             ___________________   

EBU No: _________

Player 4______________             ___________________   

EBU No: _________

Full congress £75                                          Swiss pairs  £45

Swiss Teams £30                                           Mixed/Open Pairs  £6

Team mates needed

Please tick the events you wish to enter and whether you require team mates and send a cheque made payable to the Manx Bridge Union with your completed entry form to

Liz Kelly, 35 Birch Hill Crescent, Onchan, Isle of Man, IM3 3DQ

Isle of Man Congress

Isle of Man Bridge Congress

The Manx Bridge Union has held an annual Bridge Congress in Douglas, Isle of Man, every year since 1967, with a memorable Golden Anniversary in 2016. It is a modestly-sized event, attracting a field of normally about 15 to 20 tables and is described by the organisers as “Small, Friendly and Competitive”. About a third of the entrants are locals but the majority come across the sea from England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. There is a high proportion of repeat visitors and the friendships that have developed over the years is a feature of the event.

The Congress is held on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the second weekend in September. There have been various venues over the years but in recent times the Palace Hotel has been the scene of the action. The hotel is at the centre of Douglas promenade, well located for all local amenities, and the fine bridge room commands excellent views over Douglas bay. Accommodation is available for visiting players at the hotel (at a special room rate)

The principal events are the Swiss Pairs and the Swiss Teams and Green Points, cash prizes and sponsored prizes are awarded to the successful players.

The Isle of Man provides “a Great Weekend in a Special Place” and the timetable for the bridge sessions is such that there is some time available for visitors to explore some of the charms of the Island. Some like to extend their stay and make their visit into a longer holiday giving them more time to enjoy our beautiful Island.

Visitors to the Island can travel by sea (from Belfast, Dublin, Liverpool or Heysham) or by air (from Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Dublin, Edinburgh,Gatwick, Glasgow, Liverpool, London City, Luton, Manchester or Newcastle)

Anyone interested in finding out more about the Congress should contact -

Liz Kelly: email  mobile: 07624 429341

Local pair come 3rd in Swiss Pairs
Local pair come 3rd in Swiss Pairs
Congress 2018


The Manx Bridge Union hosted its 52nd Annual Bridge Congress at the Palace Hotel, Douglas from 8th to 10th September 2018. Sixty eight competitors, including 23 locals contested the various events, with the rest of the entrants coming from England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland - so a modest increase in numbers over 2017 and an international field (which actually included a number of players of international status).


The main event was the Swiss Pairs, spread over 3 sessions of 28 hands, one session on each of the three days. At the end of the first day it was good to see a local pair, Jascha Garre and Rod Wiseman, defying the international big guns and leading the field. Sadly, from a local perspective, this state of affairs did not endure and some of the visitors who regularly attend and do well in the Congress came to the fore. The eventual winners were Martin Garvey and Kenny Watson. Second were Stuart Davies and Paul Belsten. As regards local interest, Paul DeWeerd and Bernard Palmer, who have represented the Island in the last two Commonwealth Championships, came a splendid third and well placed local partnerships were Andrea Knox and John Large who came 13th and Stephen Baggs and Justin Corfield who came 15=.


The Swiss Teams event was held over two sessions and the winning team was Cros. Croswell, Gavin Mackay, Warner Solomon and Bill Nichol. The first wholly Manx team was Alex Onions, Jackie Molesworth, Andy Elliott and Paul DeWeerd who came 7th. Other Manx individuals who played in successful teams were Erika Slatcher, whose team came second and Steve Baggs and Justin Corfield whose team came third.


In the lesser contests, the Open Pairs and the Mixed Pairs, the winners, respectively were Stuart Davies and Paul Belsten and, newcomers, Rosa and Robert Richardson. The best local showings were by Andy Elliott and Paul DeWeerd, 12th in the Open and Andrea Knox and John Large, 4th in the Mixed.


So the silverware all went off Island (metaphorically), but locals did well against the high quality opposition and built up some good experience ready for next year. There were many favourable comments from the visitors about the Congress - “A Great Weekend in a Special Place”, as the Manx Bridge Union’s publicity says.