Members of Preston Bridge Club have become the first among their peers to bridge a North/South divide by holding a large bridge cafe drive for cancer services in Lancashire.
Instead of meeting to play at their home venue of St Walburge’s Centre, club stalwarts Geraldine Rankin, Maxine Whalley, Yvonne Dickinson and Gill Armstrong organised a bridge cafe drive.
Hugely popular in the south of England and across Europe, cafe drives takes play into a number of different cafe locations.
The 64 players who played in Preston Bridge Club’s cafe drive started their afternoon’s play in the Baluga Bar before moving to the Olive Tree, then re-grouping at the Turtle Bay only to cross the Flag Market to finish in Villa Italia at the Guild Hall.
Their efforts raised £1,018 for Rosemere Cancer Foundation.
Geraldine said: “We went to a bridge cafe drive in Oxford and enjoyed it so much, we thought we would bring the concept to Preston so it could be the first city in the whole of the North of England to stage such an event.
“The organisation and admin were quite hard work but it was great fun and everyone who took part said they would like to do it again. With 64 players, we had 16 tables but bridge cafe drives are becoming extremely popular and a recent one in Belgium had 200 tables.“Bridge café drives usually have a charity element and we decided to use ours to raise money for Rosemere Cancer Foundation. It’s a charity close to a lot of people’s hearts given that almost everyone you meet has either been treated themselves or knows someone who has gone for treatment at Rosemere Cancer Centre.”
The cafe bridge drive was won by Catherine Draper and Maureen McConkey with Sue Fjortoft and Nick Woodcock in second place.
Also among the prize winners were John and Beverley Hood, relative newcomers to the game. Preston Bridge Club is offering Tuesday lessons, the first one of which is free, from September 25. For details, call 01772 750179.