Category Archives: Courses

Bridge this week

Tuesday 13th January

Play and learn: Wytham Village Hall, 9.30am to 12.30pm

Thursday 16th January

Refresher course: Wytham Village Hall, 9.45 to 11.45am

Friday 17th January

Next Step course: Wytham Village Hall 9.30 to 12.45pm

If you have expressed interest in one of the two courses, but have not seen an email from me in the last few days, please check your spam folder or contact me on arb.oxford@gmail.com.

Spring 2020 teaching and play sessions

Here (at last!) are my plans for teaching in the New Year. I am trying this time round to be as flexible as possible, so that nobody is disadvantaged if they cannot make all the lessons in each course. There is a summary on this link. https://arb-oxf.uk/summer-2019-courses/

Here are the current options:

Beginners

There is no scheduled beginners class at present, but if you would like to learn from scratch, don’t despair. Simply drop me an email (arb.oxford@gmail.com) and let me know you are interested in learning.  I shall add you to my waiting list and as soon as there are enough people to make it viable, we will schedule a time and venue for the beginners course. You won’t regret learning this great game!

Next Step

This will be taking place over four consecutive Friday mornings beginning on Friday January 17th. Each session will be a double lesson, which experience shows is helpful for those at this stage of their learning. The course is already nearly full, but there may be an opportunity to join if you let me know in the next week or so. There are a couple of one-off spots also available on the first and third dates. Venue: Wytham Village Hall. Start 9.30am. Free parking. Booking form attached. See the course outlines page on the website for more details. Ideal for those who have been on a Beginners course or know the mechanics of the game but want to press on ahead.

The Next Level

This courses based around Andrew Robson’s latest book, The Next Level, which looks in more detail at the bidding conventions and play techniques you will already know if you have completed the Essential or Improver courses. There are 36 separate topics (listed on the website) and I am proposing to teach these as individual 2 hour lessons, each one featuring at least four hands to play, plus a separate bidding quiz and notes I am writing for each topic. Each topic will go into greater depth about such tools as Stayman, transfers and Roman Key Card Blackwood and many suit play techniques.  If you have to miss one, provided you can notify me in advance, you won’t be charged but can roll forward your course fee for that day to a later lesson. The initial course fee for five lessons will be £100, after which you can renew for a further block of five lessons at a time. Provisional timing and venue: Monday mornings at the NOA in Summertown. Please let me know if you are interested and I will send you a booking form.

Refresher course

I am repeating this course as it proved very popular before. Because of the amount of individual attention involved, I am limiting the numbers to a maximum of four tables. It will be held every Thursday morning at Wytham Village Hall, starting at 9.30am and lasts around two hours. The format is very simple: each table deals and plays a hand, which is then discussed in depth with all the players at the table. The emphasis is on recognising situations as they arise and practising what you have learnt before, although in practice new topics keep on cropping up (e.g. signalling, using cue bids for slam bidding). I shall be providing a follow up note on any important ideas to emerge each week. Ideal for current or potential partners who want to play regularly together (although individuals are also welcome). The cost is £20 per week. First come, first served. Email me on this email if you are interested in signing up.

Advanced Defence

I am also scheduling this course, which is about the art of successful defence at the highest level. Venue and timing will be determined as soon as final numbers are confirmed. It follows on from the successful Advanced Play course held in the autumn. Improving your defence will not only make every hand of bridge more interesting, irrespective of whether you are dealt any good cards, but also make you a popular partner. All the secrets of signalling, counting and discarding are covered. Just email if you are interested.

Learn and play

The regular Tuesday morning supervised play sessions will continue at Wytham Village Hall throughout the year and I hope that the numbers will continue to grow, as they did satisfactorily in 2019. The first session of the New Year will be held on January 7th 2020. I hope to add a slightly different second supervised play session each week, starting in February. The idea I am toying with is running each session with a slight difference, playing a pre-dealt set of boards, just as on Tuesday mornings, but scoring each session as a teams event to add a slightly keener competitive edge to proceedings, and maybe adding a Q and A session at the end (as Andrew used to do in his club). Don’t be put put off if this sounds too serious: it will all be done in our normal friendly atmosphere. This could be held on a weekday evening, starting at 7.15pm. Let me know if this might be of interest to you.

Other courses

As you now there are 11 Robson course in total, all of them listed on the website (link to Our Andrew Robson courses) and I am always willing to offer them if there is sufficient demand. The way I propose to deal with this is to invite you to suggest the courses you would like to take and as soon as there is enough interest to make them viable I will be happy to schedule them. Experience again suggests that running courses as four double sessions or even two or three triple sessions can be the easiest way to resolve the problem of only being able to attend some of the normal eight weekly lessons in each course. Finally if you know of anyone who you think would enjoy learning bridge with me, please feel free to give them my contact details and ask them to get in touch.

Happy New Year to everyone.

First course in the New Year

The first course I am offering in the New Year is Andrew Robson’s Next Step course. This is the follow up to his popular beginners course which I have taught in Oxford three times already. The course will be held as four double lessons on four consecutive Friday mornings, beginning on January 17th 2020 and running from 9.30 to 12.30pm (or however long it takes to cover all the material). The venue will be Wytham Village Hall. The cost is £180 for the entire course, which includes a 50-page set of course notes, expert tuition, refreshments and follow up material. Each lesson includes four pre-dealt hands for you to bid and play. A number of you have already signed up for this, but if you have not done so and think it might be suitable for you, please let me know as soon as possible. I am attaching a Next Step Booking Form, which includes how to pay by bank transfer, but you can also pay online here as well. Details of other courses in the New Year will be published shortly.

 

Next Step course Q1 2020

The Next Step course is ideal for those who have learnt the absolute basics of the game and are looking to further and practise what they have learnt.

£180.00

Bridge this week

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.

Bridge this autumn

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.

Monday 

(am) Improver course, in Summertown, starting September 23rd

Tuesday 

(am) Bridge at Wytham Village Hall, every week starting 9.30am-9.45am

Wednesday

(pm) Advanced Play (four half day sessions, starting on October 16th)

Thursday

(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

Friday

(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.

 

 

 

Latest bridge update

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.