Keen player made a life member
At the Wanganui Contract Bridge Club’s AGM on November 22, Chinese immigrant Anita Thirtle, was awarded life membership for her dedication and continuous service to the club.
Anita was born in Hong Kong and emigrated to New Zealand with her surgeon husband in 1974. After a brief time in other towns, they settled in Whanganui where they have been ever since. She started playing Bridge in Whanganui in 1984 and has been an active member and tournament player, travelling all over Australasia to play in tournaments for more than 30 years. She has also been a Bridge Grandmaster since March 2014, is a qualified Bridge Director, having passed her exams in 1996 and has also acted as Club Director for a year. For many years she has been responsible for dealing hundreds of boards so that club members have pre-dealt hands to play every session.
Bridge is not Anita’s only passion in life. She was the President of the Wanganui Chinese Association Inc for 20 years during a successful business career in the garment industry and often helps New Zealand Police and Whanganui businesses with translation services when needed. This culminated in being awarded the Queens Service Medal in 2011 for her contribution to the Chinese Community. She has also been a Justice of the Peace since 1996.
“It’s great to see people like Anita given an award like this because people like her are the backbone of the club,” says Neville Parker, who was elected the club’s new President at the same meeting.
“You wouldn’t find a nicer, more harder working person than Anita. She loves her bridge, is one of the kindest most helpful people you would ever come across and she absolutely deserves this award,” added senior player, Steve Baron.
Anita’s award was initially proposed by Club Patron Ann Buckley, then accepted by the club committee and unanimously approved by all members present at the club’s AGM. Anita is the 10th club member to be awarded Life Membership with others being Robyn and Don Nightingale, Noni Baldwin, Wally Duncan, Ann Buckley, Dennis Price, Barbara Griffin, Bruce Perkins and Wendall Hart.
The Wanganui Contract Bridge Club is one of the oldest bridge clubs in New Zealand established in 1940 with Dr FC Hutchinson as its first President. In 1967 the club purchased premises in Wicksteed St and in 1984 it moved to its current premises in Parsons St, St Johns Hill. The club has a growing membership of 200-300 and caters for all levels of players Anyone interested in playing or learning Bridge can contact the club on 06 345 6203 or by email bridgewan[email protected]