Wadhurst Bowls Club
Wadhurst Bowls Club was founded in 1934 and is affiliated to Sussex County Bowls and Associate Member of Bowls England. It has a reputation for having one of the best greens in the South East of England. The club is situated in the centre of Wadhurst and can be accessed from Washwell Lane.
NEW MEMBERS WELCOME
A short history of Bowls by Laurence Worton
Bowls in England has a long history and can be traced back to the 13thcentury and there is evidence that a form of bowls may have existed a hundred years earlier. The world's oldest surviving bowling green is the Southampton Old Bowling Green, which was first used in 1299. The Chesterfield Bowling Club can trace its roots back to 1294. Wadhurst Bowls Club is a relative baby – only being born in 1934!
During the middle ages bowls became so popular that both the King and later Parliament feared that bowlers were spending so much time on their game they were neglecting their archery practice and laws were passed in the reigns of Edward III and Richard II
banning the sport.
In fact under an act of 1541—which was not repealed until 1845—‘artificers, labourers, apprentices and servants’ were forbidden to play bowls at any time except Christmas Day, and then only in their master's house and in his presence. For the rest, anyone playing bowls outside his own garden or orchard was liable to a penalty of 6s. 8d. (£140 today) – blimey!
Fortunately for us, in 1588 Sir Walter Rayleigh wasn’t one of the great unwashed and was allowed to finish his game of bowls at Plymouth Hoe before strolling down to the harbour and setting sail to defeat the Spanish Armada.
Things really got going in the world of bowls following the patenting of the first lawn mower in 1830 allowing for the preparation of modern-style greens with new clubs springing-up all over the country. In England today there are over 2700 clubs.
In 1864, William Wallace Mitchell published his "Manual of Bowls Playing" in Scotland, which became the basis of the rules of the modern game.
National Bowling Associations started to be formed in the late 1800s. The Scottish Bowling Association was established in 1892 and the English Bowling Association in 1903 by legendary cricketer W.G. Grace who was elected its first president.
Today, bowls is played in over 40 countries, In England alone there are over 132,000 players – what’s stopping you?
Call Tracy on 01892 785689