Our autumn Andrew Robson bridge courses start this week, with Improver starting tomorrow at 9.30am in the NOA, Summertown, and a bespoke Refresher course for a number of you who have requested it on Thursday mornings (same time, same venue as Improver). I will also shortly be confirming final details of the Beginners, Essential and Advanced Play course dates. Two of these courses (Beginners and Advanced Play) will be made up of four three-hour lessons rather than eight shorter weekly ones. If you would like to join any of these, even at this late stage, please feel free to let me know and I will fit you in if I can.
For the next few weeks our regular Tuesday morning supervised play session will be held at Wytham Village Hall, which is the next (very lovely) village you get to if you keep going past The Trout in Godstow (our former venue) and sits just the other side of the A34. Some of you may know it already from either the pub (The White Hart) or the conservation work Oxford University does in Wytham Woods or from Inspector Morse (one of whose murder cases takes place in the woods). It is accessible either from Wolvercote or directly from the A34 and overlooks the cricket ground and the woods. There is parking right outside. It is just a couple of hundred yards from the pub and village shop for those who like to stay for a drink afterwards.
Being a village hall means that we do not need to be so rigorous about ending at 12.30. I propose therefore to keep the official starting time at 9.30, but as long as you can turn up by 10am, you will always be welcome. I am also reinstating a Doodle poll to allow you to indicate if you are likely to be coming – not compulsory, but helpful for Annabel and I to know rough numbers. Here is the link to the poll. I will normally check the names on Monday afternoons. I will also check the bank account to make sure I know who has paid in advance (still the preferred payment option, although cash is also welcome).
There will be another lesson and play session in The Corner House, Charlbury on Thursday afternoon (September 26th) starting at 1.45pm. Further regular dates will be scheduled when I have an idea of how popular they are likely to be, based on this second Doodle poll (link here). Those who have already been to one of these popular sessions, or would like to consider them in the future, are invited to show their interest in future dates between now and Christmas. Hope to see you soon.
This is the schedule for all the bridge courses and play sessions we are running this autumn. I have added booking forms for the courses, on both the autumn course page and also on a new booking forms page. The weeks ahead now look like this.
(am) Improver course, in Summertown, starting September 23rd
(am) Bridge at Wytham Village Hall, every week starting 9.30am-9.45am
(pm) Advanced Play (four half day sessions, starting on October 16th)
(am) Essential course, in Summertown, starting September 26th
(mid-am) Refresher course, in Oxford, starting September 26th
(pm) Bridge in Charlbury, at the Corner House, from 1.30pm
(am) Beginners course (four half day sessions, provisional timing)
I am thinking of adding a second play and learn session either on Friday mornings or Wednesday evenings, at a venue to be determined. If you would be interested in this please let me know so I can judge whether there is sufficient demand to make it work. I am also planing to run a short course on the 2/1 bidding system for those who play duplicate regularly.
Look forward to seeing you soon. Jonathan.
We have our regular bridge session at The Jacobs Inn in Wolvercote tomorrow (August 20th) starting at 9.30am. On Thursday (August 22nd) I will be hosting another lesson/play session at The Corner House in Charlbury, starting at 1pm. I am meanwhile putting the final touches to the schedule of autumn courses, which will start in the week beginning September 23rd. Most lessons will be on Mondays and Thursdays but there may be other times as well if there is sufficient demand. Thank you to everyone who has contacted me asking about future courses. I hope to accommodate as many of you as possible. There will be a free taster session for beginners on September 16th; if you think you might know someone who would like to learn bridge, please mention it to them and ask them to come along to see how we go about it. It is a free and no partner is needed. Best wishes Jonathan.
A quick reminder, for those who may not have seen my earlier email, that bridge tomorrow morning (July 9th) will not be at The Trout but once again at the Jacobs Inn in nearby Wolvercote. Also that there are additional places for the two special one-off seminars I am offering – one on transfers (this Thursday July 11th, starting at 9.40am) and the second on doubles (penalty or takeout?) next Monday (July 15th) at 9.40am. Both sessions to be held at the North Oxford Association in Diamond Place, Summertown (behind the Co-op). The cost for each two-hour lesson is £20, but free for those who have just finished the Essential Extra or Improver Plus courses.
Despite having to postpone a couple of lessons because of unavoidable changes to my schedule, the two courses I have been teaching this summer (Essential Extra and Improver Plus) are sadly coming to an end. Because they have been such excellent learners, however, I have decided to offer a bonus lesson to all members of these two courses and would also like to open these two popular single topic lessons to anyone else who would like to join, for a single one-off payment of £20.
The two dates are as follows:
Date: Thursday July 11th
Time: 9.40 to 11.40am
Where: North Oxford Association, Summertown
Subject: Transfer bids
Free to members of the summer 2019 Improver Plus course. £20 anyone else.
Date: Monday July 15th
Time: 9.40 to 11.40am
Where: North Oxford Association, Summertown
Subject: Doubles – takeout or penalty?
Free to members of the summer 2019 Essential Extra course. £20 anyone else.
I will also provide summary notes by email after each lesson.
To book a place for either lesson, simply email me (email@example.com) to reserve your place and pay either online in the normal way by bank transfer or bring cash on the day.
Following requests from half a dozen budding enthusiasts who have completed my Beginners course, I am also looking to teach a version of the Next Step course over the course of the summer months. This will be done on an ad hoc basis through a series of 5 or 6 somewhat longer sessions than normal. If you would like to join this programme, please let me know and I will endeavour to arrange it. Next Step is suitable for anyone who is not a complete beginner, but is keen to go up a level or has recently returned to playing the game. The venue will also be in Oxford, and somewhere close to good parking and the ring road. More details once it is clear that we have the numbers to make it viable.
The play and learn session tomorrow will not be at The Trout, as usual, but instead at the Jacobs Inn, a few hundred yards away in Wolvercote village. There is parking there too and a fair deal of space – lighter and less cramped than the room at The Trout we had last week. Kick off as normal is formally at 9.45, finishing at 12.30 or so, but if you get there earlier and want to start playing a few randomly dealt hands that is fine too. I shall be there from 9.30. Sorry for the change in venue, but we are in peak tourist season, with the end of the University term thrown in as well. Here is a link to the new venue.
Following a successful first meeting in Charlbury at the end of May, I am happy to announce that we will be holding two more sessions there on Thursday June 20th and Thursday July 4th. Both sessions will kick off at 1.30pm in The Corner House, a delightful old building in the middle of the town.
In response to feedback my plan it to split the sessions into two parts: (1) an hour’s lesson followed by (2) up to two hours of supervised play. Because there is a range of ability, the first lesson will consist of a review/refresher lesson on the basic principles of bidding and a summary of Andrew Robson’s bidding methods. This I hope will be of value both to those who are still learning the game and those who have played more often before, but either may not know the Robson system or feel they would benefit from a refresher.
The supervised play session will be grouped into tables by level of experience and everyone will have the opportunity to ask for expert help at any stage, should they so wish. This way I hope that we will be able to move towards creating a regular weekly event in which as many players as possible can take part, combining a chance to improve with the opportunity to share in a sociable and friendly game. There will also be an opportunity at the end to ask questions about any of the hands that you have played.
You can book a place for the 20th June event by following this link and for the 4th July event by following this link. Alternatively, for those who already have our bank details you can pay directly online, giving Charlbury June 20 or Charlbury July 4 as the reference. The charges are (1) lesson only (one hour) £8; (2) supervised play only £7 (two hours); (3) combined lesson and play £14 (three hours). This includes free tea, coffee and refreshments.