Acol Bridge

For interested Bridge Players, who would like to learn the Acol Bidding System, we have tried to accumulate sufficient material regarding the Acol Bidding System. As with all Bidding Systems, there are modifications, different approaches, even conventions devised and borrowed, and we have included these for the edification of our visitors and for the curious. Any contributions to this list will be greatly appreciated.

Summary of the Acol Bidding Systems

The Acol Bidding System is considered to be a natural system. However, the Acol Bidding System is also considered to be an unregulated system, meaning that there is no official governing body issuing any directives about the structure of the bidding system, as opposed to the ACBL’s Standard American Yellow Card. Most Acol-players compare the bidding system to a ‘living language’, which changes with time, evolves as a necessity, and becomes modified as needed.

There are several versions, therefore, of the bidding system, and all versions are in use. They include, but are not officially limited to:

Acol, which is unregulated Acol. This version is perhaps the most common and preferred version and is sometimes referred to as Standard Acol.

Standard English Acol, which is referred to as Standard English. This bidding version was developed by Sandra Landy with the support of the English Bridge Union and under its supervision and/or auspices. This version had the goal of facilitating the learning of the game of bridge for new players.

Benjaminised Acol, also referred to as Benji Acol or simply Benji. This version employs opening on the two level in both Major suits as weak openings, as opposed to openings on the two level in both Minor suits as being strong openings.

Reversed Benji, which is identical to Benjaminised Acol except that the two Minor suit openings on the two level are switched or reversed.

Acol System Notes

The visitor finds access via ‘Map’ in the menu, top left.
This is a must read for any bridge player wishing to understand the guidelines of the Acol Bidding System. Dr. Chris Ryall has made notes on the general structure of the Acol style which he suggests is somewhat more relaxed than North American methods. These System Notes are designed for those who already know the basic principles of bidding and hand evaluation, but wish to play in an Acol partnership in say an online environment. The distinction between Acol and Benjaminised Acol is explained, and common variants seen in Britain are mentioned.

Standard English Acol System

This is the complete bidding system for Acol players as published by the English Bridge Union. This is in .pdf file format and can be found on the website of the English Bridge Union.This is the official system as presented by the EBU as Standard English Modern Acol, Version 1 and dated December 2006. The visitor should check for this information and additional information with the EBU. A copy of this information, also in .pdf file format is archived and preserved on this site solely for future reference.

Acol Bidding System

In keeping with the policy of courtesy, we have decided to include the Basic Guidelines of this Bidding System mostly used by our British bridge players. We have tried our best to present and represent this System, but we know that we can not accomplish this on a grander scale. We hope, however, that we have done our readers a certain service in acquainting them with the Acol System. We wish to give them that choice.

Acol Bidding System

This is a comprehensive bidding system for the Acol System devised by Mr. George Jesner. Many of the features have to be memorized. Since it is so extensive, it is suggested that the interested bridge player take the time to discover the logic and reasoning behind this bidding system.

Acol Two-Bid

The Acol Two-Bid is an intermediate bid and is forcing for one-round, because it represents a strong and forcing bid. Includes the definition of the Herbert Negative Bid.

Acol General Structure

For those bridge players being introduced for the first time to the Acol System, this would be a starting point to learn the basic structure.

Acol according to Lewis and Hancock

A summary, written in 1987, of the Acol Bidding System devised and played by Mr. Hancock and Mr. Lewis. First names unknown and would be appreciated. This is written in a .pdf file format, and, depending on your browser, will either be automatically opened by your browser or automatically downloaded to your computer and opened with Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Baron System

Note: Under construction. A part of the Acol System, and yet a system that stands on its own merits.

Benjamin Convention – A scheme for opening Two-Bids or bids on the two level: Majors: weak; Diamonds: artificial (near) game-force; Clubs: artificial, an Acol two-bid with long suit(s) as yet unspecified.

Benjamin Two Bids or Benjamin 2 Bids – This bridge concept was originated by Mr. Albert Benjamin of Scotland. Also known as: French Two Bids and Unnamed Strong Two Bid Openings. As a feature of the Acol bidding system, the Benjamin Two Bids are employed to indicate an opening, which almost guarantees a game holding.

A feature of the Acol System after a 2 No Trump opening bid.

Acol 4 No Trump
This is a special and specialized opening bid, which asks partner directly how many Aces he holds. As you might suspect, the opener already has enough Playing Tricks for a slam, and is looking for the grand slam.

Acol Leads and Signals
As in all Bidding Systems, the lead can give useful information to the partner, as can the first discard.

Opener’s Rebids
General Guidelines for the opener and several for the responder.

A feature of the Acol system which deals with the rebid of 1 No Trump by the opener.

The term Swine is an acronym for Sebesfi-Woods-1-Notrump-Escape.

Wraight Convention

Devised by Mr. Philip Wraight. Playing Acol, the bridge player may have a problem as responder with a balanced 10 count, if the bridge player is unable to bid a four card suit at the one level, since 1 No Trump shows 6-9 points except over 1, and the 2 No Trump rebid shows 11-12 points. The bridge player is also in difficulty with a balanced 3-3-3-4 hand with 6-7 points if partner opens 1, when a raise in Clubs takes the bridge player past what may be the best contract of 1 No Trump. This can be true of both Minors if you are playing Inverted Minor raises. This information has only been preserved and archived in .pdf file format on this site for future reference.