Start of Season Drive 2022 A few of our members enjoying the Start of Season Drive in April

Start of Season update 2022 by Laurence Worton

Bowls England is organising a ‘Bowls Big Weekend’ in late May. This will be a well-advertised event with nationwide coverage on both radio and TV. It will serve as a prelude to the International Bowls Competition at the Commonwealth Games in the summer.

 Wadhurst will be participating and hosting an open-day at the club on Sunday 29 May from 12 – 3pm. The clubhouse and green will be open and for new players there will be a chance to have a go yourself. We hope to trial our own fast-paced short-game version of Jack-Attack - which enables new players to get out there and have a game within minutes of stepping onto the green.

 You will need to let us know you are coming at least a day or so before hand. So put it in your diary now and give me a call to register your interest. 

Laurence – 01435 884331 or 07714935915

If you are unable to come along to ‘Bowls Big Weekend Open-Day’ or prefer to have a go on your own we will be running Taster Sessions throughout the year. These, like the open-day are free. Just get in contact and we can get it sorted – bring a friend and make an evening of it.

 Another ‘first’ for Wadhurst is the running of a ‘Fresher’s league’ This is specifically aimed at new bowlers to enable them to play games against other new bowlers in a social setting but with the idea of everyone learning the game together. Depending on numbers and how it goes we may promote the ‘Freshers’ into an ‘Improvers’ league and start another batch of Freshers a month later – it’s all exciting stuff at Wadhurst!

 Talking of new ideas, I suppose I will have to get up to speed with Facebook and Instagram. Bowls England advise leaving Instagram in the hands of a younger member who will know their way around and set the right tone ‘for the kids’ Well, that would be a fine thing but we don’t have any younger members.

 I started playing at 14 years old in an age of black and white television and coppers with helmets. What is it that’s stopping youngsters now?

 There are plenty of kids who are not ‘sporty’ in the traditional sense and don’t fit into mainstream sports but Bowls offers a gentle introduction into a competitive world that can be played by girls and boys, little or large. It’s very ‘do-able’, sociable and doesn’t require great strength or speed. Neither does it require a lot of money – junior membership is just £5 a year.

 Here I am fifty years later and still playing….


Donation from Jempson's

Wadhurst Bowls Club would like to thank Jempson's for their kind donation towards the new club shirts planned for next season.  

Opposite: Laurie Buckingham, Chairman receiving the cheque together with Linda Carless and Judy Gibson on Tuesday 14th December at the Peasmarsh store.

2021 Season
Tunbridge Wells League - Division 3

Tracy and Nigel Gethins attended the Tunbridge Wells League AGM
on Tuesday 26th October where Tracy was presented with the winners shield and pennant for Division 3 from Ken Smith, the League Secretary

End of 2021 Season Update by Laurence Worton

With the ‘putting-to-bed’ of the green the curtain finally came down on our 2021 summer season but this is not a time to wave goodbye to our fellow bowlers as a very high number have joined The Royals Indoor Bowls Centre to keep playing through the winter.

 Membership increased nearly 50% over the course of the year leaving us in a very good position to start 2022.

 Our AGM held in October, amongst other things, discussed and approved a new design for club shirts for next season.

 We have to get final approval from Sussex County Bowls but we should be able to step onto the green next season looking sartorially elegant and professional even if our bowling hasn’t improved.

 The new shirts set up a wonderful sponsorship opportunity for local businesses. We keep the same design for around 10 years so for a small outlay a company can see their name advertised all over East Sussex. With good press coverage and a successful season this could be the advertising opportunity of a lifetime!

Give me, Laurence Worton, a call on 01435 884331 or 07714 935915 if you want to discuss.

Until we meet again – Stay Safe!

September Update by Laurence Worton

The season finally drew to a close at the end of September when the bowls green was to put to bed for the winter after two days of hard work by club members who scarified, mowed, seeded and top dressed the grass to give it the best possible chance over the coming months.

We have our club AGM scheduled for Monday 18 October where the members will vote on a new design for our club shirts for next season. We will have to be careful we don’t pile on the pounds over the next six months otherwise those new shirts won’t fit us!

 Elections of officers will take place and there will be a report on membership numbers by the person responsible for Recruitment and Publicity – that’s me!

 Briefly, Covid took its toll on groups and meetings at the start of the season making it difficult to organise promotional events in a safe way but from 36 members we have managed to grow the club and finished the season with 52 paid-up playing members.

 Most of this has been through the support of local publications and Parish magazines – where editors take an interest in local clubs and I would like to show my thanks and appreciation to them on behalf of the club.

 One thing is certain however and that is that the best way to promote the club is by recommendation and word-of-mouth. Talk to your friends, neighbours and work colleagues – get them involved! We can all do our bit.

 Another worthy news item is an update on the Home County League Final which was held at Egham Bowls Club Surrey

HCL Final

On 18th August, the Home County League Final was held at Egham Bowls Club.
Sussex were against Hampshire.  It was a close fought game with Sussex winning on four rinks which was enough to see them over the winning line by four shots.
Bill Crittle (third from right) representing Wadhurst played in the final - it was the first time Sussex had won the HCL.
Mark Strong, Team Manager, dedicated the win to the Late Ken Woodcock, previous Chairman and President of Sussex County Bowls , who was well respected by all the players and Sussex County.

2021 Club Championships

Andy Jenner, Men's Singles Champion and Linda Carless, Ladies' Singles Champion.
Trophies presented by Gary Tate from Tate Fencing

We still have a few club games scheduled through to the end of the month with our last game being away to Staplecross.

And then it’s time for bed…..

 Straight after the last game we start putting the green to bed for the winter. This involves members pulling together to cut, scarify, aerate and apply three tons of top dressing to the green. Pack away the benches, have a good old tidy up, turn off the electrics and water, pull down the blinds, lock the door and walk away into the setting sun…. 

Until next year when we do it all over again!

Wadhurst Bowls Club – Update (by Laurence Worton)

 August Bank Holiday weekend was the club’s ‘Finals Day’ when after all those early rounds the finalists get to show their skills in front of friends, relatives and members over two days of top class bowls action.

 Nine finals were being contested but the blue-ribbon events were the Men’s and Ladies' singles finals. Winner Andy Jenner for the guys and Linda Carless for the gals both go forward next season to represent the club in the County/National Champion of Champions competitions. A very prestigious event where we as a club get to gauge just how good our best players are against other clubs within the County and also Nationally – no pressure!

Ending on a more serious note we now have a defibrillator available within the clubhouse. The unit was generously donated by Brian Wates of Pragmatic Process Automation Ltd following an incident several weeks ago. The photo below shows Chris, father of Brian, presenting President Bill Crittle with the unit.

 Hopefully it will never need to be used.

Wadhurst Bowls Club - August Update (by Laurence Worton)

August proves to be the ‘business’ end of the season with competitions reaching their latter stages and some lucky (skilful) bowlers planning for their club ‘finals’ 

Wadhurst bowlers made good progress in the County competitions this season with Tracy Gethins doing very well in the ‘Champion of Champions’ and Brian Fellowes reaching the area semi-final of the National over 55’s singles competition.

Three bowlers: Andy Jenner, Brian Fellowes and Bill Crittle have been selected to play for the county. We as a club are very proud of their achievements as they not only represent all of Sussex but also fly the flag for Wadhurst – don’t let us down! 

Many games and competitions have been postponed during the pandemic but we still hold the Horam league title from 2019 as no further games have been played since then. 

The Tunbridge Wells Triples League has however continued this season. Wadhurst ‘A’ were in contention for the coveted league title right up to the last game narrowly dropping to a third place finish. However lower down in division three we had two new teams competing for the first time. Wadhurst ‘B’ ran out league champions after a long delay to play their last match and look forward to promotion next season but unfortunately the ‘C’ team finished last. 

During August we held our annual “Tate Evening” where our main sponsors, Tate Fencing, came down en-masse for an evening of bowls, fun, frolics, and food. 

Right at the end of August we will held our Club Finals weekend, too late for me to report results in this edition but tune-in next month. There will be a presentation ceremony for the winners on Saturday 4 September. 

Looking ahead through September we have eight friendly club games planned and our end-of-season club ‘Drive’ – a fun game – where all members come together for one last time before we put the green to bed at the end of the month, pack away our bowls and hang up the waterproofs – it’s been a wet year. 

But let’s not write-off the season just yet there are still sunny days to come and some lovely evenings to be had on the bowls green. 

New to bowls? Why not pop over during one of our games for a look? 


Wadhurst Bowls Club - July Update (by Laurence Worton)

 July proved to be a very busy month. Although several of our games were cancelled due to the weather others fell by the wayside when either the opposition or we were unable to field a full team. Most likely this is linked to Covid - not because of illness but because we were all taking the sudden opportunity of being able to go on holiday!

 Wadhurst have one of the best greens in Sussex (have I told you that before?) and we were privileged to host several prestigious games at the start of July including the Sussex County Vice-Patrons match, the Sussex County Two Woods Competition and a County Billingham League match – unfortunately all in the space of just four manic days!

 Wadhurst bowlers have preformed well in their respective County Competitions and I hope to be able to report next month on some ultimate success. I don’t want to give name-checks now just in case it proves unlucky.

 Mid month we hosted a taster session for the Burwash Walking Footballers and their wives. We know they enjoyed themselves as they drunk quite a lot and we ran out of Prosecco. We hope to turn that enthusiasm into new members before they sober up….

 Although the Horam League was cancelled for this year the Tunbridge Wells League is going ahead and Wadhurst have three teams battling for supremacy. It would be great if we could walk off with the trophy and officially hold both titles at the same time – something no club has ever done before.

Next month will be equally busy as apart from our usual inter-club games we have our Mixed-Triples Open Tournament on Sunday 15 with 24 teams competing for £300 prize money. Our club Triples Competition on Sat 21 and our Club Finals over the weekend of 28/29th. 

 Why not pop over and say hello?

 If you would like to give bowls a go, either as individuals or as a group of friends contact Honorary Secretary Tracy on 01892 785689 who will make arrangements.

On Saturday 24th July we held our annual President v Chairman and BBQ.   The day was a great success with a win for the President's team.  We were extremely lucky with the weather and ended the day with a delicious BBQ.

President v Chairman Bill Crittle, President, Valerie (daughter of Basil Grant) and Laurie Buckingham, Chairman
The Spider Valerie awarding the prize of a bottle of Grant's whiskey to Val McGee the winner of the Spider!
A few of our members who played against Rotherfield on Saturday 26th June.

Wadhurst Bowls Club – June Update  by Laurence Worton

 The problem with writing this article is that it needs to be submitted to the magazine in early May for publication in June so by its very nature it will always be slightly historic. By the time you read this our season will be well under way even though I can only report on our opening few games.

 In the latest government review we were hoping for a further relaxation of Covid restrictions and news from Bowls England that we can start being a little more hospitable on the bowling green by offering our opposing clubs an afternoon tea in our newly enlarged clubhouse. Getting the bar open and being able to serve a cool wine or beer in the summer sunshine would also be a nice thought.

 But let’s not wish our lives away just yet. In our opening two games we had good fortunes by beating Grosvenor Bowls Club of Tunbridge Wells 77-27 and Rotherfield 43-27

 During May we will have played 13 games and have the same number scheduled for June. That’s a total of 312 Wadhurst players bowling 16,848 woods…..

 Our players have started their County Competitions looking to progress initially to the area finals on 9 June and then, hopefully, through to the county finals in July.

 Off the bowls green we have secured a re-start grant from Wealden District Council that will help keep our heads above water financially, bought a new fridge (to keep the beer cold) and replaced the heavy steel doors on our equipment container. We are also establishing a wild-flower area between the parking area and the club to offer bio-diversity for our smaller friends.

 Various jobs need doing around the clubhouse and the green. From mowing the grass and tending the flower beds to re-pointing the paving and replacing broken roof tiles. There is always something that needs doing and offers of help are always welcome.

 So, if you like a little bit of gardening, are reasonable at DIY, like afternoon tea and a little tipple and would like to have a go at bowls contact Tracy, our Honorary Secretary, on 01892 785689

 If you are a local business and would like to be associated with a successful community club then together we can grow our profiles for mutual benefit. We have various opportunities available – why not call us to discuss? 

Wadhurst Bowls Club – May Update by Laurence Worton

By the time you read this our season will be well under way.
Covid-compliant games are taking place although no afternoon teas or
refreshments can be served until at least May 17 but it’s still lovely to get out in
the spring sunshine and have some social interaction after so long stuck indoors.
Wadhurst are the current Horam League Champions, having won the title in
2019 by the smallest of margin possible, half a point, after a thrilling final game.
The league was cancelled in 2020 and has been again this season due to the
epidemic thus we are on track to hold the league title for the longest time in it’s
Bowls England are organising a national ‘Big Weekend’ to take place over the
late spring bank-holiday weekend. Wadhurst are planning to participate -
although we await final details of the event, but there will be a chance to visit
participating clubs, meet members, have a look at facilities and, if you’ve never
played bowls before, to have a go.
But, you don’t need to wait until the Big Weekend to have a go at bowls at
Wadhurst. Every Monday evening we welcome potential new bowlers onto the
green to try it out.
Even if you are a ‘seasoned pro’, or new to the area and looking for a new club,
you are welcome to check us out. ’Taste and try – before you buy’ seems an
appropriate adage at this point….
For more information contact Tracy our Honorary Secretary on 01892 785689,
www.wadhurstbc.com or check us out on Facebook.

by Laurence Worton