Sandy Constable

Oxfordshire bridge lost one of its great characters last week with the death of Sandy Constable, aged 95. Sandy flew with the RAF in WWII and was one of the top bridge players in the county for much of his life, forming successful partnerships with Viscount Richard Parker and others. With a glass of red wine in his hand, he was still playing well just a few weeks ago, usually in a team with his son, Ian, Ian's wife, Val, and Sandy's daughter, Lynne Hayes, an England international - the Constabulary, as they were known.

Sandy was a much valued member of both Oxford Bridge Club and the Oxfordshire Bridge Association. He played a major role in getting the plans drawn up and the building works carried out to make the Banbury Road premises a suitable venue for playing bridge. He was a member of the Club Committee for several years and Chairman of the Club from 1977 to 1980. He was President for two decades, in which role he was a ready source of help and advice to the Management Committee.

Sandy was also influential in establishing the OBA County nights and played representative County level bridge for many years. He served as Chairman of the County Association, and later as President from 2001 to 2007.

In 1997 Sandy received the Dimmie Fleming Award from the English Bridge Union, to mark his contribution to bridge in the County; and in 2001 his contribution to Oxford Bridge Club was honoured with the award of Honorary Life Membership.

Sandy was witty, generous and a true gentleman of the game. He will be greatly missed.

by Richard Sills, Nick Smith, Sandra Nicholson and Kathy Talbot