During the 1970s he and Pam played in a social game at home before graduating to duplicate bridge towards the end of the decade. In the early 1980s he and his regular partner until his death, Mary Esson, played regularly at Petersfield and Chichester.
Around the time of the latter club’s move to new premises he became Treasurer of the Chichester Bridge Club. He proved a wise and faithful steward of the club’s funds and his endeavors helped the club to repay its mortgage on the new building far earlier than anticipated. On top of this he undertook almost any task at the club that needed doing: he kept equipment tidy, changed cards in boards when they got dirty and did more than his share of directing.
When asked for his favorite bridge memory, he generally recalled a story from the Swiss Pairs at Brighton playing against two young Irishmen. After they had allowed him to make a rather skinny contract one of them asked: ‘why did you give me a false count in the club suit?’ to which the other replied ‘how could I give you a false count? I had a singleton!’
The bridge that ran in Michael’s and Pam’s blood followed through their sons. His younger son John won the 1989 Junior World Championship while his elder son Julian still plays and writes about the game. To all who knew him Michael was kind and generous to a fault, courteous to partners and opponents alike and always immaculately turned out.
Before retiring Michael worked as a senior scientific officer, heading the library department at the Admiralty Surface Weapons Establishment on Portsdown Hill near Portsmouth. His other interests included family history, 1940s big band music and all things French.