Bob Blackman

Bob Blackman was elected Member of Parliament for Harrow East in 2010.
He is also a former member of the London Assembly and former Deputy Leader of Brent Council.
How did you start playing bridge?
I learned at school,from a school friend of mine whose parents were very keen players. We learned quickly as a group of four who eventually became the school team. The team I joined then reached the National Schools Final. This entailed progressing through two heats of twenty schools and a semi-final of twenty qualifiers before finishing in the top half of the finals each year. I then went to Liverpool University where I was a member of the university bridge team for four years and reached the national finals each year.
How often do you play?
Sadly, I only manage to play very occasionally although I would like to play more often.
What does bridge mean to you?
Bridge is the only game I have played where I completely immerse myself in the game to the exclusion of all other thoughts. I thoroughly enjoy the game and look forward to playing more often.
If you could change one thing about bridge, what would it be?
Its lack of popularity amongst young people.
What are your hobbies apart from bridge?
Football, cricket, reading mysteries and thrillers, chess, listening to music and watching films.
Name up to four people you would invite to your Dream Dinner Party.
Omar Sharif, Winston Churchill, Hercule Poirot and Margaret Thatcher.