Champion bridge player dies aged 72

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A champion Bridge player and husband to Baroness Henig of Lancaster has died, aged 72.

Jack Johnstone, who died peacefully on October 27 at King’s College Hospital, London, was captain of Lancaster Bridge Club A team on and off for 30 years.

He and Barry Ogden were one of the leading pairs in the North West, winning many tournaments and trophies.

In later years, with his wife Ruth Henig, he played for Lancashire and won several tournaments.

He attended Scotforth St Paul’s CE and Skerton St Joseph’s RC Primary Schools before going on to Lancaster Royal Grammar School.

While there he won a classics exhibition to Pembroke College, Cambridge, in 1959 and was one of the first students to appear on television’s University Challenge in the early Sixties. He spent his working life as a computer programmer and analyst and played in the Lancaster Quiz League for several seasons and was a keen Lake District walker and badminton player.

In recent years, he contracted a debilitating muscle-wasting disease, which gradually left him unable to walk unaided. He and his wife, who were married in 1994, moved from Wray to London so that she could continue to attend the House of Lords as Baroness Henig of Lancaster.

His funeral will take King’s College Hospital.