Search

Bowls clubs in jeopardy as national and county season is cancelled

PUBLISHED: 15:30 31 March 2020

Kevin Fitzgerald of Wanstead Central at the Essex County Bowls Club

Kevin Fitzgerald of Wanstead Central at the Essex County Bowls Club

Archant

Smaller clubs in Essex could struggle to survive

John Tully of Essex County Bowls is a worried manJohn Tully of Essex County Bowls is a worried man

The future of some of our bowls clubs may well be thrown into question after the sport closed down because of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Following a meeting of Bowls England two weeks ago, all national competitions have been cancelled for 2020.

And with county competitions leading to National Finals at Leamington at the end of the summer that means they have been cancelled as well.

John Tully, the county competition secretary said: “Once Bowls England made their announcement following government advice, the counties had little choice but to follow suit.

“Our county competitions start in May in order to qualify for the national competitions and there is no way we will be able to get back on to the greens by then.

“We have delayed a decision on the lesser county events like the secretary’s cup, the county shield and the unbadged singles until the end of June, but we may have to cancel those too.”

Other than war time, this is the first year that the county events will not be held since it began in 1909.

There was no competition between 1914-16 and 1940-44, but the singles did return in 1945 when it was won by an Ilford bowler.

Perhaps the more serious side of these decisions could be on the smaller clubs in the area.

“The big clubs like Wanstead Central, Romford and Essex County will certainly survive, but I have serious concerns for some of the smaller clubs,” said John.

“I know that the council has already shut down all the greens in Thurrock and there is already talk about them not coming back.

“Our clubs have been struggling for members for a long time and this may well be the year when people think they will no longer bother to renew and that would be a real shame.”

It means the chance of overthrowing Andy Squirem the six-time county singles champion will have to wait for another year, while club officers like President Sandy Dron from the Upminster club, and deputy president Dave King of Romford BC will remain in office until 2021.

“These are difficult times with nobody being able to play bowls,” said Tully. “All we can hope for is that the virus subsides more quickly than some are suggesting.”

Whether that is in time for some of the clubs in Essex remains to be seen.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the East London Advertiser. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.

Latest East London Sports News

52 minutes ago

Players from West Ham United’s Academy of Football are keeping track of their fitness programmes, while at the same time raising money in aid of King George and Queen’s Hospitals Charity, to support their inspiring local NHS heroes in East London and Essex.

10:00

Leyton Orient chief executive Danny Macklin heaped praise on Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane by terming him as a ‘first-class individual’

07:35

The International Cricket Council (ICC)’s recommendation of a temporary ban on using saliva to shine the ball could hand batsmen a significant advantage, claims Australia paceman Mitchell Starc.

Yesterday, 16:02

The 2019-20 Women’s Super League season has been brought to an end with immediate effect.

Yesterday, 13:00

Premier League clubs will vote on proposals for a return to contact training on Wednesday.

Yesterday, 12:00

With sport still shut down across most of the globe due to the coronavirus pandemic, why not test your sporting knowledge with another quiz?

Yesterday, 08:02

Professional sport has nudged a further step closer to a resumption after the government published ‘stage two’ of its guidance which enables competitive and close-contact training.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

England Boxing is set to launch a series of free 30-minute online mental health awareness sessions called ‘Box In Mind Bitesize’.

PROMOTED CONTENT

The Government has announced an unprecedented package of support to protect jobs and support business across the UK during the coronavirus outbreak.

People working for a wide range of private companies have been standing side-by-side with public sector staff on the front line during the coronavirus outbreak.

The United Kingdom is pulling together as one, with people from all regions and all four nations of the country helping each other through the coronavirus pandemic.

Most read sport

Competitions

A competition for wannabe writers has been started to add works to Canary Wharf’s ‘short story’ dispensers which are temporarily locked up by the lock down.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Most Read

Latest from the East London Advertiser