Welcome to Bristol Bridge Club


Bristol Bridge Club aims to provide facilities and opportunities for all its members to enjoy playing and learning bridge, no matter at what level. Beginner or international.

We are a large club and are able to offer playing sessions that suit all levels of ability. Non-members are always welcome.

The club has its own premises and we are situated near the centre of Bristol in Hotwells. The club consists of a large playing room with a smaller area for classes and a licensed bar that also offers light refreshments.

The club plays duplicate bridge on most days of the week, usually with a qualified director.

The club is affiliated to the English Bridge Union (EBU), via the Avon Contract Bridge Association (ACBA).

BRISTOL BRIDGE CLUB is a charity and it has been entered onto the Register of Charities with the Registered Charity Number 1167959.

There is car parking close by.

For directions and map, click here.

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Latest News

  • Curtis Cup 2019

    We have introduced a new format for the Curtis Cup event this year. One... read more...

    Posted 16 Apr 2019 by Sue O'Hara
  • Austwick

    Congratulations to Keith McIndoe who has won this year's competition. See... read more...

    Posted 15 Apr 2019 by Sue O'Hara
  • Mens and Ladies Pairs

    Congratulation to Sheila Hodges and Paul Keaney and to David Jones and... read more...

    Posted 20 Feb 2019 by Sue O'Hara

Hand of the Week

Week 66

There are two main scoring methods in bridge.


Matchpoint Pairs where you score 2 points for each pair you outscore irrespective of whether the difference is 10 points or 1000. Therefore overtricks take on great importance as does playing in no trumps and major suit contracts rather than safer minor suits. It is also necessary to double the opposition in certain situations where you set the contract by only 1 trick in order to protect your score where for example they bid 3s over your 3h and you turn +100 into +200 when you would score +140 playing in 3h.


Imp scoring used in Teams Events and for Butler Pairs. Here it is the size of the difference which is crucial so overtricks and undoubled undertricks are not important but the game bonus is much sought after so one bids game much more aggressively than in match point pairs and plays in safe contracts and do not make tight doubles. It is a more conservative in some areas and more aggressive in the game area.


One aspect of teams scoring which is different to pairs is the principle of taking out insurance in close situations where both sides have a good fit.


I will give an example from my Monday afternoon session.












It is love all and you hold this pair of hands. It is teams type scoring. The bidding goes 


2h -p-4h by the opposition to the hand which is 6-0-5-2 shape. 2h is weak.

Is 4s too dangerous or not? 


The other hands are 












4h is cold if declarer gets the trumps right since the club suit can be established.


How does 4s play? It has 3 top losers (2 trumps and CA) and if the defence find their diamond ruff it goes 1 off if not it makes.


So the motto here playing teams scoring is you must bid 4s since there are two situations where you will be right.


1 If 4h is cold and 4s is 1 or 2 light when it will be a good save.


2 If 4s is also makeable. 


You are only wrong when both contracts fail and if both are each only 1 off then the "insurance action” at this form of scoring is to bid 4s over 4h  since it represents only a very small loss at imps. 


Playing pairs with match point scoring one would be prepared to back ones judgement and defend 4h some of the time if you thought 1 off for each contract was probable because small differences matter at this form of scoring.



In many respects teams is an easier game because the aims are much clearer whereas match points pairs requires a deeper assessment of the hand in terms of the probable outcome across the room as a whole.

Week 65

This week I thought I would discuss some of the principles regarding the choice of opening lead.


The opening lead is the most important card played on many bridge hands and one must consider the bidding carefully before making your lead .It is not therefore entirely surprising that in high level bridge pairs have sought ways of providing illegal information to partner about this most important card.


A general point which players sometimes forget is that if one is defending a low level contract such as two of a suit or 1nt you will nearly always get a second or third chance to find the optimum defence so an attacking lead is unnecessary and passivity is fine (by passive I mean leading from 3 or 4 small or maybe leading a doubleton against a low level suit contract and by active we mean leading from a holding including an honour or honours). On the other hand if defending a game or slam contracts it is often imperative that we lead the correct suit in order to establish a winner or winners before they are discarded elsewhere.


Defending against a suit contract there are broadly five strategies which are up for consideration.


1 Try to establish a trick or tricks in a side suit.


2 Try for a ruff by leading a shortage.


3 Lead trumps in order to prevent ruffs to declarer. There are 3 common situations where this is correct :- if we think declarer may be able to take ruffs in the short trump hand say if playing in a 5/3 fit, if our side has the balance of power and we have doubled the opposition, where a cross ruff is threatened.


4 Play a forcing game. This is where we hold 4 goodish trumps and opponents are in say a 5/3 fit. Rather than lead from shortage we lead from length to force the long trump hand to ruff with the resultant loss of control which such a defence may produce.


5 None of the above; which is typically a passive lead to get the ball into play and then decide what to do thereafter.


A careful listening to the bidding will often provide the answer.


Against no trump contracts on the overwhelming number of hands we lead from our length in order to set up winners but there is a different style which is often right when defending against 1nt.


I will give an example from a recent event 







1nt all pass. Many simply led a low heart and as it happened this proved to be dreadful. The alternatives are SQ or CJ. To my mind both are better and I will try to explain why.

In leading from length we seek to establish a number of winners which is why a 5 card or longer suit should nearly always be led. 4 card suits by definition generate fewer winners and in defending against a low level NT contract where we are bound to get a second chance we do not need to stake everything on a heart lead therefore leading from the spade or club holding is perfectly reasonable. Even a lead from three small is often better than leading from a broken four card suit.



The bidding is the key so take for example 3nt contracts. If the opposition have not looked for a fit in a major we much prefer to lead one over a minor suit but if the bidding has gone 1nt 2c 2s 3nt a major is unattractive since spades are on the right and hearts on the left.

Week 64 and 63

Week 62 61 60 and 59

Week 55 53 and 53

Week 52 51 and 50

 Week 49 and 48

Week 47 46 and 45

Week 44 and 43

Week 42 and 41

week40 and 39


Week 38 and 37

Week 36 and 35

Week 34 and 33


Week32 and 31


Week 30 and 29 

 Week 28 and 27

Week 26 and 25 

Week 24, 23 and  22

Week 21, 20 and 19


Week 18 and 19


Week 16 and 15


Week 14 and 13


 Week 12 and 11


Week 10 and 9


Week 8 and 7


Week 6 and 5

Week 4 and week 3


Weeks 2 and 1


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/TinyFileManager/resources/files/48///week 38 & 37

/TinyFileManager/resources/files/48///week 49 and 48 (1)/TinyFileManager/resources/files/48///week 49 and 48 (1)

/TinyFileManager/resources/files/48///week 52 51 and 50

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