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Bridge Courses

Bridge courses are available for all levels of player from beginners to regulars. The courses cover a wide range of bridge topics to suit all requirements. The primary aim of all the courses is to offer the participant the ability to learn Bridge or improve their game in a relaxed, convivial atmosphere. No pressure – and lots of fun.
Lessons are built around the bidding system most suited to the Group.
Comprehensive lesson notes are given for every part of the course.
All Bridge courses and events are fully EBU licensed.


There are three core levels of tuition:-

Beginners      :     Refreshers/Improvers      :      Regulars

Each level has many lesson topics available and specific lessons are chosen after consultation at the time of booking to ensure the Group receives tuition in areas of interest and benefit to them.

For beginners, the English Bridge Union teaching structure is followed and a comprehensive course-notes pack is provided. A year’s membership to the EBU and their quarterly Bridge Magazine is also arranged.

‘I never thought I would learn Bridge but Harris made it exciting and fun. We have had a wonderful holiday and loved the Dordogne, Chestnut Cottage and your hospitality’
Petra - Scotland

What Bidding Systems are used in the courses?

The courses are centred round the basic bidding system favoured by the Group, usually the one most commonly used in their home country. Normally a Group nominates either Acol (weak NT/4-card major) or 5-card major/Strong NT. A number of conventions and bidding approaches are also always discussed.
Usually, however, a major part of the course is not bidding-system dependent as there is an emphasis through all the courses on card-playing techniques which apply regardless of the bidding system adopted.


What form do the courses take?

All courses, which follow a theme, consist of five in-depth teaching-sessions per week, each teaching session lasting around 2 hours and fully supported by comprehensive notes.
Lessons are spread over the course of your stay to give guests plenty of sightseeing and non-bridge activity leisure time. Throughout the week there is also the opportunity for supervised Bridge sessions, social –Bridge play and quizzes.
Tuition is given utilising a combination of graphic-board material, pre-prepared and live hands, comprehensive notes and quizzes.
The most valuable asset of the courses is however the fun people have during the sessions and throughout their stay. Nothing is more valuable in helping participants gain the knowledge and information they want.

‘As regular Bridge players we found the course really stimulating…
we learned a lot and enjoyed ourselves’

Joanna Schoenberg and Group

Your Teacher

The teaching is lead by Harris Raphael, a bridge player and teacher for over 25 years, a Professional member of the English Bridge Union Teacher’s Association, and a Bridge journalist, writing for, amongst other publications, The Connexion, France's English language Newspaper.
Harris’s bridge-teaching style is very relaxed, encouraging and inclusive. His infectious enthusiasm for the game ensures that no question goes unanswered and no-one is left behind.
Harris’s ability to help each participant grasp the essential points is the key to his teaching success along with his ability to ensure everyone has fun learning and playing.


‘Harris’s Bridge teaching style is quite infectious.
He’s a great teacher who encouraged us all…………We loved it’

Beryl Shorthouse

Examples of Course Lesson Topics


For all those who want to learn how to play bridge. The course covers all the basics needed to get going. This level is suitable for complete beginners and those who have played very infrequently and possibly some time ago. Fun lessons and practise play. Lessons include:-

• The object of the game • types of bridge played • rules of the game • how to score • assessing the quality of your hand • the code and purpose of bidding • basics of bidding • basics of play • remember – it’s a partnership! • opening and responding bids • bidding to game and slam • count, finessing and signalling • recapping



Aimed at those who play bridge occasionally, usually socially, and know the basics but now want to move ahead, improve their game and play a more consistent level of bridge. The courses cover many aspects of successful bridge play but at a level which assumes participants have played enough to recognise its wonderfully challenging but frustrating nature. Lessons may include topics such as:-

• revisiting some of the ground rules for winning at bridge • ‘MAP’ every hand • assessing the quality of your hand – the ‘losing trick count’ • count, count, count • Who’s lead is it – oh dear, it’s mine! • Introducing ‘weak two’ bids • when do I duck –when do I hold-off • Pre-empt – it’s fun! • take-out doubles• planning (thinking!) before you leap • doubling – but why! • reviewing a topic of the participants’ choosing • recapping key topics


For those who have being playing bridge for a while at either a social or club level and want to refine their techniques and add preciseness and consistency to their play by understanding and incorporating some modern bidding and play methods into their Bridge armoury. Lessons may include topics such as:-

• Card-Placing • Successful Camouflage techniques • Backing the favourite – playing the odds • Card combinations • Modern bidding RKCB / Weak 2’s / cue bidding • Duplicate Bridge techniques • Loosing trick count • Hold-up play • Making the right play at trick one • squeeze play • reading the clues • count, count, count
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