Sussex bowlers get into swing of new season

MP Nick Gibb bowls the first wood of 2014 at Bognor Bowls Club Picture by Kate Shemilt C140499-1
MP Nick Gibb bowls the first wood of 2014 at Bognor Bowls Club Picture by Kate Shemilt C140499-1

Here’s our latest round-up as the local outdoor bowls season gets into full swing.

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The green opened for the new season with the usual spoon drive, which was won by Mervyn Netley, Alan Banham and Peter Massey.

Allan Marsh has taken over as president from Malcolm Keane and Brian Henham is this year’s captain - Bernard Wallsgrove having stepped down after five years.

The club are holding an open day this Saturday, when anyone with an interest in bowls is welcome.

The green is open from 11am to 4pm, when visitors will have an opportunity to learn to bowl with help from members and take part in a fun target bowls competition. Refreshments will be available and there is ample parking.


Pagham bowling members turned out in force for the opening friendly game of the new season.

They were pleased to welcome local MP Nick Gibb and Bognor town mayor Paul Wells, who delivered the first two woods of the season.

Mr Gibb wished members a very happy season and said - to loud cheers - it was good to see they still had a lovely bowling green and not a new housing estate, following last year’s campaign to save the site.


MP Nick Gibb got the new season under way by bowling the first wood at Bognor Bowls Club in a friendly between the president’s team and the captain’s team.

After a short introduction by the new captain Steve Soames, bowling began with a fun afternoon of play. Members were lucky with the weather, with only one short stop for a downpour.

Bognor had a successful 90th anniversary season last year under Ned Waddock, the retiring captain who gave five years’ excellent service to the club. They hope to continue this successful trend in their 91st season.


Chichester 37 Pulborough 29

Chichester entertained Pulborough in their first BM Mixed League match of the season.

The home side got off to a good start before Pulborough gradually pegged them back - but Chichester held on to win by eight shots, taking all six points.

Scores: C Hobbs, W Adams, D Schofield (skip) won 19-15; P Whale, S Miles, M Bayfield (skip) won 18-14.


The West Sussex Short Mat Bowls Association held their annual charity fours tournament.

This year it was to raise money to support a local bowler, Les Dray, who played at Crablands in Selsey and at Norfolk in Littlehampton and who had a serious road accident last May.

Les was knocked down on the Chichester by-pass and has spent most of the past year in hospital. He is now back home but seriously disabled. Twenty-nine teams from around Sussex, Hampshire and Wiltshire were present and each played six games, after which the best two played off in the final.

The two finalists were the Portsdown club from Havant and a mixed team of two West Sussex players, Bernie Deeble and Trevor Harman, from Clapham and Patching, and two players from London.

In the final, the Portsdown team ran out 7-2 winners and the cup for the best-placed West Sussex team went to the Lavant II team of Clare Beardmore, Barbara Copeland, Rob Peirce and Peter Whale.

The day was a great success with everyone enjoying the bowling and a total of more than £1,300 raised through the generosity of all the players.