Bowls season up and running

CLARENCE acting captain Ian Baker together with president Don Towie assisted popular life member George Bridge to raise the flag on the opening day of the season to spontaneous applause from the gathering.

CLARENCE acting captain Ian Baker together with president Don Towie assisted popular life member George Bridge to raise the flag on the opening day of the season to spontaneous applause from the gathering.

George has achieved much in his bowling career, being County President in 1998, Middleton selector for three years and elected to membership of the Barbarians Bowls Association, which he considers to be his highest accolade.

George played the first wood to get the day off to a fine start and the members enjoyed a fun match on the lush turf. After the match players and guests enjoyed an excellent meal accompanied with wine served by the wonderful ladies. Winners on the day were Tim Perry, Alex Blanning, Chris Read, Dave Stott. Winner of the spider was Roger Burrough.

ISLE of Wedmore men's captain Brian Freeman and ladies' captain Carole Pettit opened the season by hosting an American lunch for around 60 members prior to play commencing.

As usual the afternoon started with a Spider where the players take up a position on all sides of the green and the jack is placed in the middle. Everyone bowls at the same time with one foot in the ditch and the winner is the player whose bowl ends nearest to the jack. This year's winner was Val Hardwick, who collected a bottle of wine.

Fourteen teams took part for the game when it took a few ends for members to get to grips with the pace and line of the outside greens. Ten ends were played which is usually more than enough when the weather is cold but with the warm sunshine, there were a few players reluctant to leave the green.

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The winners, with the highest shot differential, was the quartet of Barbara Disbrey, Vera Banwell, Keith Burt and George Guest. They each received an Easter egg, beating Joan Richards, Liz Hamblin, Brendon Cottrell and Roy Thurkettle to the chocolate by just one shot.

Competitive play will start in earnest next Sunday with the first leg of the Moors Shield to be played at home against Mark Moor.

The club welcomes anyone interested in taking up the game of bowls to a free taster weekend to be held on between 2 and 5 pm on Saturday and Sunday, April 25 and 26. Coaching will be available, shoes and bowls provided. For further information contact Roy Norris on 01934 743394 or Keith Pettit on 01934 733237.

ST ANDREW'S men opened their season in glorious sunshine. The president Malcolm Goddard raised the club flag with help from life members Andy MacNab and Alex Horsburgh, who bowled the first wood of the Season.

The president's team played 18 ends against a team selected by men's captain Graham Burgess. The game, played in such good weather and good spirit, provided a welcome start to the season and resulted in an eight-shot win for the president's team.

This was followed by an enjoyable tea provided by Mrs. Betty McCullum, Mike Berry and the good-hearted ladies of St Andrew's.

President's Team 115, Captain's Team 107: President, G Berry, M Berry, D Bailey 20, Captain M Blight, R Dunstone, T Allen 16; A Cooper, A MacNab, D Favis 17, T James, B Ennis, R Gill 18; Mrs B Goddard, R McLeod, A Main 28, Mrs M Wride, P Pattenden, A Horsburgh 11; K Rodgers, T Bell, H Pothecary 18, F Mudge, A Ware, B May 15; R Lay, P O'Connor, T Thomas 9, J Pope, S Davies, R Venn 30; R Smith, M Goddard 23, K Uglow, G. Burgess 17.

VICTORIA opened their season on a welcome sunny day. After the flag-raising ceremony, the president, Terry Gilbert's team challenged the captain, Keith Holland's team and some 64 bowlers participated in a thoroughly entertaining game.

The president had started with high hopes having purchased a new set of bowls, but his rink lost by six shots lost out to the captain. Mike Stocker, playing on his favourite rink, won the first two ends and that was about all, finally losing by seven shots to 26 which did not help the president's team as the captain's team came out overall winners by 15 shots.

Afterwards, the bowlers and their guests sat down to an extremely good tea provided by the ladies.

President 138, Captain 153: President, K Miles, J Kerr, J Loughlin, M Stocker7, Captain F Aldridge, A Waygood, M Fletcher, J Howell 26; P Lunn, R Sparkes, A Corbett, M Taylor16, J Griffiths, B Carrett, A Barnes, E Mangan 29; T Gilbert, P Leadbeater, G Thorne, D Williams 14, J Palmer, R Fenwick, K Holland, D Jones 20; H Gibbs, M Beecher, M Manning, A Uccellini31, I Linham, D Roberts, T Gatehouse, R Skilbeck 7; W Osborne, E Young, E Sage, M Cooper 19, C Swatton, M Willetts, R Rockett, R Noddings 16; K Harvey, A Shattock, G Frost, C Gazzard 14, W Nicholls, N Sell, R Keddy, R Joyes 22; A Owens, S Thynne, A Bowerman, W Harrison 28, G Richards, S Taylor, P Palmer, S Evans 17; J Newman, R Taylor, J Bryant 9, M Tansley, D Hurst, A Bradley 16.

WINSCOMBE'S season was opened with the first bowl being delivered by the president's wife, Mrs Jill Westlake.

In excellent weather conditions a match was played between president Colin Westlake's team and captain Lewis Collier's team, the president's side being victors. After the game the ladies joined the players for an excellent supper in the pavilion.

During the day �130 was raised and added to �217 raised at the April coffee morning in aid of the SW Children's Hospice.

The Winscombe Ladies opened the season with a friendly match followed by a buffet in the pavilion.

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