The day started very cold with a brisk wind, no members of the public wanting to play, so our 3 county coaches on duty (Andy, Les and Karen) decided to coach some club members. They had only just got started when people started to arrive and as the day went on it never stopped. In all 17 people turned up, which makes nearly 40 over the 2 days. It was a very successful day with 4 new member,s and a total of 13 returning on the following Tuesday evening for Club night, some from the previous open day.
England’s Commonwealth Games lawn bowls stars have thrown their backing behind a new campaign that aims to increase the number of women participating in the sport as a player, coach, administrator or official.
‘Women Can’ aims to bring to life the many different things that bowls can offer women – from social and competitive bowling to friendship and fun. Three-time Commonwealth Games Gold Medallist Ellen Falkner is leading the initiative on behalf of the Bowls Development Alliance (BDA) with support from her Gold Coast team mates and fellow ‘Women Can’ ambassadors Natalie Chestney, Sian Honnor, Katherine Rednall, Sophie Tolchard and Alison Yearling.
Gail Hunter-Gilkes and Mo Monkton, both of whom are currently at the Commonwealth Games in a coaching capacity, have also been named as ambassadors.
Falkner, who struck Gold for England in Manchester, Delhi and Glasgow, said: “To be involved in a campaign to encourage more women to enjoy the sport of bowls is a fantastic opportunity for me to give something back to the sport I love. It is difficult to articulate in words the impact that bowls has had on my life as it has been so significant. Some of my happiest moments and memories in bowls have been with my family, especially playing with my Mum and Nan and it is one of the things that I love most about the sport – you can play and enjoy it with those you care about most.”
It is estimated that only 39 per cent of bowlers in England are women, and ‘Women Can’ aims to see that percentage rise to 45 per cent by 2021.
In addition, eight ‘Women Can’ Leaders have also been named to provide support to bowls clubs wishing to increase participation, coaching, officiating or administrative opportunities for women.
Future plans for the ‘Women Can’ project include the production of resources to help clubs to recruit more women including relevant marketing material, the development of new formats and offers to attract diverse groups of women into the sport. Support will be offered to assist clubs wishing to pilot and implement innovative ideas.
Bowls England Chief Executive Tony Allcock MBE said: “Bowls England is delighted to support the ‘Women Can’ campaign and trust that it will inspire women of all ages and abilities to participate in the sport as either a player, coach or volunteer.”
Peter Thompson, English Indoor Bowling Association Chief Executive, said: “The EIBA is delighted to support the Women Can Campaign as it will encourage more women to play, coach bowls and/or be involved in the day to day running of our clubs.”
Visit www.playbowls.org/womencan to view the campaign video, which showcases the many different things that bowls can offer women.
Mention Lawn Green Bowling and it’s quite likely to conjure up an image of senior citizens, men in flat white caps, flannels and blazers and ladies in white straw trilby hats, multi pleated skirts topped off with blazers. That may well have been part of the picture when Calne Bowls Club first started back in 1914 although because ladies were not admitted to the club until much later it would only have been part of the picture.
Now in this our 102nd year, of course, it’s a completely different picture, twenty first century Calne Bowls Club supports, equally, ladies and men’s membership and our theme for 2016 is that It’s Not Just for Old Folk. Lawn green bowls isn’t just a sport for older folk but one suitable for all ages and abilities. A sport that can be played either as an individual or as a team player. Indeed, the modern day game being played regionally, nationally and internationally attracts players from school age onwards. As part of the Calne Bowls Club current recruitment initiative we have approached local schools with a view to providing student groups with introductory sessions. Additionally, as part of the plan to help promote the sport, several club members are about to embark upon training courses with the view to joining the ranks of the clubs’ certified coaches.
Tuesday evening May 2nd is the first Club night of the season. Club Night is open to all members and starts on the first Tuesday in May and runs until the last Tuesday in August – it’s an informal evening providing an ideal opportunity to practice your game, play a friendly match and generally socialize. It is also an ideal occasion for making a first contact with the club either as a newcomer to the game or as an existing bowler thinking of relocating to Calne Bowls Club. The meeting starts at six o’clock and runs for a couple of hours.