Bolton Parks Veterans Amateur Bowling Association

Membership, Aims and Objectives
Association Rules
Teams Secretaries
Team Results Secretaries
Team Captains
Club / Team Treasurers
Club / Team Secretaries
Guide to Results Entry
Association Competitions 2019
Lancashire Competitions - 2019

Useful Links:
BCGBA Website
BCGBA - Latest Newsletter
BCGBA Registration Form
BCGBA Development Plan
CGB Federation
Safeguarding Website

League admin


Sponsored by BETFRED

2019 SEASON  

The 'A' Section Merit Competition was won by Keith Clarkson who beat Fran Taylor in the final and the 'B' Section Merit Competition was won by Walt Callow who beat Kevin Pickervance in the final held at Westhoughton Park. For the full results and report, please click the appropriate link. Congratualtions to all who took part.

Congratulations to Astley Bridge Park 'A' and Moss Bank Park 'A' in the 'A' Section and Darbishire Park 'B' and Westhoughton Park 'A' in the 'B' Section for winning and being the runners-up of the respective Sections for the 2019 season. 

Congratulations to Moss Bank A for winning the Harrold Orrell Cup final. Commiserations to Longsight A who lost the match by 8 chalks on aggregate. Thanks to Astley Bridge for hosting the final on 3rd September. 

The aims of the association are to encourage, promote and organise the game of Crown Green Bowls for Veterans playing on Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council Park Greens.

We currently run two sections, the 'A' Section has 15 teams, while the 'B' Section has 16 teams. We play on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons (plus some Wednesdays). Each team has twelve players.

We welcome anyone over the age of 60 years, male or female but you need to register for a team before playing a match and hold a current BCGBA number and a Bolton Parks permit.

Please click the post holder to contact the Chairman - ;  the Results & Fixtures Secretary - ; League and Competitions Secretary & Website Manager -  If the links do not work for you, please use the following email address or Telephone: 07949 200 926.

Please look around the site and have a look at the different links on the left hand side. There are links to names and addresses of all Team Secretaries, Results Secretaries, to previous years' results under the achieve. There is a link to the guide to help your entry of results once the season starts. Links to BCGBA Newsletters, etc.




Merit Competitions 2019

Secretaries Shield 2019

BetFred Trophy 2019

Mixed Pairs 2019

Date of Next Meeting & Minutes of Meetings

Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition 2019

Bowling Permits go up

Start Time now 1.30pm

Have your say on the Consultation

Council Consultation on Greens

BPVABA Forthcoming Competitions and Date Changes

BetFred Trophy - Preliminaries - 9th July 2018 - Start and Scratch Out 12:30 - Revised Draw

Mixed Pairs - 2018

Darbishire Park A withdraw from the league in 2018

Fraser Huyton Pairs - Green Allocation for Preliminaries 2018

AGM - 25th January 2018 - Papers

Proposed Rule Changes and Papers for AGM 2018

The State of the Greens

Merits Competitions - 2017 Results

Secretaries Trophy 2017

League Team Championship Finals

BetFred Green Allocations for Preliminaries on 10th July 2017

Mixed Pairs Competition - 12th June

Ken Barker passes away

Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition Finals - 2017

Report on Annual Secretaries Meeting - 12th January 2017

GI Wilson attended our Presentation

Gordon Firth

184 Not Out

Merits Competition - 2016

Cup Finals - 2016

Change in Dates and Venues of Competitions in September

Secretaries Trophy - 2016

Betfred Trophy Competition 2016

Bowl played out of turn

The Bet Fred Mixed Pairs Competition - 2016

Endsleigh Insurance

Cup Match Results

Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition - 2016

Merit Competitions 2019

The Merits are to be held at Westhoughton Central Park on Monday, 9th September. 30 bowlers are already registered but we would like more participants so eligible bowlers may enter on the day. To be eligible you must comply with Rule 2.4.5 below. If your name is highlighted in orange below you meet the criteria of Rule 2.4.5 and may take part - however only a maximum of two bolwers from one team may play in the competition. Bowlers not highlighted are already registered to play. If bowlers wish to enter on the day they are asked to attend at Westhoughton Central Park at 11:00.

2.4.5 On completion of all League Matches, the two (2) players who have the highest qualifying average in each team, in both Sections of the League, shall be eligible to play in the respective Merit Competitions. If a qualifying player is unable to take his place in the Competition, the player with the third best qualifying average from their team, shall be allowed to participate in their place. To be entitled to play in the Competition a player or substitute, shall not have missed more than six (6) matches in the season. In addition a player or substitute shall have played in three (3) of the last five (5) matches of the season.


Section A  
  1st Rep     2nd Rep 3rd Rep
Astley Bridge Park A     Mark Bradshaw     John Mort  
Astley Bridge Park B     E Gregson     Roy Schofield Paul Pover
Egerton Park A     Peter Hardman     Howard Boyd Dennis Wildman
Egerton Park B     Eric Haslam     Peter Crook  
Great Lever Park A     Fran Taylor     Rod Cuming  
Haslam Park     Keith Crook     No one else available  
Horwich Public Hall A     Ray Sale     Keith Andrews  
Horwich Public Hall B     No one else available     Trevor Hope  
Longsight A     Les Fishwick     No one else available  
Longsight B     Ian Holloway        
Moss Bank Park A     No one available     No one available  
Moss Bank Park B     Keith Brooks     Keith Clarkson  
Sunnyside Park     Tommy Harrington     Tommy Glover Neville Gregson
Tonge Park A     Mick Bailey     Mick Hilton  
Tonge Park B     E Hall     Anne Norris Terry Ratcliffe
Section B              
Astley Bridge Park C     David Barton     Malcolm Austin David Tadd
Breightmet     Alf Evans     C Parkinson Anne Booth
Darbishire Park B     Andy Cook     Keith Townsend Danny Fletcher
Darbishire Park C     Tom Chesters     Agnes Briggs Pete Roberts
Egerton Park C     Geoff Dunn     David Phillips Rita Dunn
Great Lever Park B     Albert Ashworth     Walt Callow  
Heywood Park     Peter McCawley     Jim Barton  
Longsight C     Kevin Pickervance     John Kay  
Merehall     Trevor Owen     John Patterson Joe Duker
Moss Bank Park C     Mary Southern     Sonia Forrest  
Moss Bank Park D     Eric Redford     Graham McGuiness  
Queens Park A     Howard Tilotson     Christine Dew  
Queens Park B     Derek Hill     John Kelly Norma Buckley
Westhoughton A     No one available     No one available  
Westhoughton B     Lynda Baker     No one else available  


(Saturday 07 September 2019)

Secretaries Shield 2019

The Secretaries Trophy was played at Haslam Park on 5th August. We had a dissapointing number of entries with only 12 participants.

The League Secretary thanked Eddie Thompson and members of the Haslam Park Club for hosting the competition.

The bowlers were in two halves with 'A' Section bowlers in one half and 'B' Section bowlers in the other half. The 'A' Section final was competed between Ron Spedding and Clive Fenn both of Great Lever Park 'A' team with Ron coming out on top 15 - 12. While the 'B' Section final was contested between Carol Pollitt from Egerton and David Dixon of Great Lever 'B' team with David coming out on top 15 - 9. The Final of the Secretaries Shield was then played between the two Great Lever Captains with David Dixon, the 'B' team captain coming out on top winning 15 - 13. Ron has the consolatory thought that he got to 15 chalks first and had he not had a handicap of -3 would have won. Congratulations to David and commiserations to Ron. The full draw and results can be found here.

Pictured from left to right - Clive Fenn, Ron Spedding, David Dixon (Champion) and Carol Pollitt.



(Wednesday 07 August 2019)

BetFred Trophy 2019

The BetFred preliminaries were held on two greens for the first time in 2019. The preliminaries were played at Sunnyside and Queens Park on 8th July. In total 37 entries were received but only 16 bowlers attended each of the two venues. As a consequence, all bowlers played one match to qualify for the Final 16 who were scheduled to play at Great Lever Park on 15th July.

The finals were played in good spirit with some excellent bowling being watched by bowlers and spectators on a glorious day. The competition was won by Kevan Lathom who beat Alan Foster in the final beating him 15 - 7. The full draw can be found here.

Thanks were expressed to the Committes of Great Lever Park, Sunnyside and Queens Park for hosting the final and preliminaries.

A photo will be posted in due course.

(Wednesday 17 July 2019)

Mixed Pairs 2019

The Mixed Pairs Competition was played at Derbishire Park on Monday, 10th June. The weather stayed fine all day despite the threat of bad weather which was thought the competition was played over two days. There was an excellent days bowling with the eventual winners Sonia Forrest and Les Fishwick who beat Sandra Doel and Clive Fenn in the final 15 - 9. Congratualtions to Sonia and Les and commiserations to Sandra and Clive. Ken Holcroft thanked the Committee at Darbishire Park for hosting the competition.  The draw and results can be found here. 

Mixed Pairs Finalists Clive Fenn, Sonia Forrest, Les Fishwick & Sandra  Doel

Email Sent to All Team Secretaries by Ken Holcroft on Saturday, 8th June 2019 @ 13.15

All Team Secretaries, copy to all Executive members

The number of female entries to this competition has dropped considerably this year and we really do not have enough potential pairs to require a qualifying round, and it is therefore proposed that the fixture scheduled for Monday,10th June will be the final of the competition,  playing for the actual trophies.

It is common knowledge that this particular competition attracts more male entrants than female and therefore some men inevitably have to be balloted out at the green, and this tends to cause upset for the male players who have travelled to the venue only to return home without playing. This year the situation is far worse than usual in that we have only 21 female entrants but 41male entrants, so  Clive and I, as acting Joint Competition Secretaries, have therefore decided that the only viable solutions to the problem are as follows:

1.   We have closed the entry list with immediate effect and cannot accept any further nominations for the competition, and

2.  We are concious of the concern that players have regarding attending the green only to be balloted out but with such an imbalance in the male/female entrants some balloting out will be inevitable. With this in mind we have drawn the lots for the sequence of players to be balloted out and ranked the order of male bowlers according to the attached list. All male bowlers can attend if they wish but bowlers lower down the list are more unlikely to be playing on Monday in the competition.  For example, if all 21 ladies attend the first 21 men listed will play, with pairings 12 - 21 playing in the preliminary round with pairings 1 - 11 getting byes to the second round (last 16). We believe that this is the only fair method to deal with the problem and, as this is now the final of the competition, the players balloted out may well wish to stay and support their team mates or friends who will be playing.

Could you please notify all of your players who have entered this competition, especially the male players, of the above comments and advise them that we really would appreciate them attending the green on Monday? Female players can be found here listed in no particular order but generally by teams.



(Saturday 08 June 2019)

Date of Next Meeting & Minutes of Meetings

Proposed dates for the remainder of 2019 are shown below

Presentation - 13th 6th November 2019 – at The Railway at 13:30 for 14:00 (Please note correct date - a wrong date was given) 

AGM – 23rd January 2020 – at The Railway at 13:30.


Minutes of previous meetings can be viewed by clicking the appropriate link below

Secretaries Meeting Minutes – 19th September 2019

Papers distributed at the last Secretaries Meeting of 14th March 2019 

Greens Petition Header and Continuation Sheet 

Team Competition Draw and Handicaps

Trial Rule Changes for BPVABA Competitions in 2019 including Individual Handicaps 

Earlier Meetings

AGM Minutes (draft) - 31st January 2019

Secretary's Report 2018

Treasurer's Report 2018 Annual Balance Sheet and Reconciliation Statement

Competitions Summary - 2019

Secretaries Meeting Minutes - 20th September 2018

Notes of Furum Meeting - 19th September 2018

Ken Holcroft's thoughts on Competitions

AGM Minutes - 25th January 2018

Secretaries Meeting Minutes - 21st September 2017

Secretaries Meeting Minutes - 9th March 2017

ASM Minutes - 12th January 2017

(Saturday 11 May 2019)

Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition 2019

The green allocations for  preliminaries of the Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition can be found here. We are trialling a handicapping system to try and increase numbers participating. This year we have 48 spread across two greens - Egerton and Breightmet. The scheduled date for the preliminaries is Monday, 13th May with Friday, 17th May the reserve date. The scratchout time and start time is 11:30 for all of the BPVABA pairs and and singles competitions.

The preliminaries went well with a fantastic day for bowling matched by excellent play from most bowlers. The finalists of the Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition which is due to be played on Tonge Park on 20th May (with reserve date 24th May) with start and scratch out time 11:30 can be found here

The final of the Fraser Huyton Pairs was played at Tonge Park on 20th May. The final day draw can be found here. The green was in excellent condition and we had a full day of excellent bowling with the winners John Mort and Gordon Butler who beat Geoff Wilde and Ray Wood in the final 15 - 7.

Thanks to everyone at Tonge Park for hosting the final day. The home made almond tart was lovely.

(Saturday 11 May 2019)

Bowling Permits go up

Bowling Permits have gone up to £25

The following letters have been recieved from Malcolm Russell concerning the increase in cost of bowling permits. This apparently was a political decicision made last Monday by the Council and ratified on Friday when the opposition parties chose not to oppose the increase in fees. 

Email received 15th April at 10:51

Bowling Season Ticket Charge 2019

Dear Clive,

As discussed on the phone.

I am sorry if you were under the misapprehension that the fee would rise by just £1 for 2019, this was not information confirmed by the Council.

Unfortunately the Council is experiencing continuing difficult financial times and as part of the 2019/21 budget process a decision was taken to review income generation i.e. fees & charges. As a result a wide range of charges across the Department of Place are increasing by above inflation, many by more than the figure for bowling green permits.

We would suggest that the new fee still represents significant value for money at a cost of around £1 per week for the summer season for the use of the greens and associated facilities. 

I trust this information is of some assistance in communicating with your members.



Malcolm Russell

 Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services)

Directorate of Place



Email received 12th April timed 15:58

Bolton Council Bowling Greens - Permit charges 2019

Dear all, 

Please accept my apologies that the Council has not been able to advise you of the cost of a bowling permit for summer 2019 before now.

I can advise that the approved charge for 2019 is £25 per player. If Secretaries could now complete the form that we sent you, collect the fees and return the same to this office it would be much appreciated.


Malcolm Russell

Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services)

Directorate of Place  


(Monday 15 April 2019)

Start Time now 1.30pm

The start time and all associated timings were brought forward 30 minutes at the AGM on 31st January. The proposal had been proposed by Chris Barnes and seconded by Ken Crook. After a short discussion on the benefits of an earlier start the proposal to start at 1.30 pm was approved with 20 votes in favour and 8 votes against. More news from the AGM can be found here.

The re-drafted rule 2.1.18 is shown below.  

2.1.18 All League and Cup matches shall commence at 1.30pm and shall be completed that day, weather permitting. Practice will be allowed before the start of all league matches at the following times:

Home team 12.55pm to 1.10pm

Away team 1.10pm to 1.25pm.

The rules for practice shall be followed before the start of any rearranged matches



(Monday 04 February 2019)

Have your say on the Consultation


Many members of the crown green bowling community will by now have seen comments in the local press regarding the current state of Bolton Council's finances, and the general opinion generated to date is very bleak. A recent email has been issued by Neighbourhood Services and recently circulated to some clubs and leagues to clarify. 

In the email a proposed option being considered is that the Council will review all 26 bowling greens and their usage and will use Community Asset Transfer Powers, where appropriate, to deliver greenspace functions through a new partnership approach with local communities. We have, however, been advised by Neighbourhood Services that it is likely that the decision on this matter will not be made in time for any changes to be implemented for 2019. Therefore it is anticipated that Neighbourhood Services will continue to cut the greens for this coming season, but are unlikely to undertake any other work on the greens, thus an element of the partnership approach is upon us.

All is not lost however because the Council have to give the community the opportunity to respond direct to them with their individual views on the budget proposal, and this is where every member of every club can get involved. However, this response must be received by the Council no later than 14th January.

To obtain full details of how the bowling community can address this matter, firstly click the link and then scroll down for about half a page where you will find a paragraph that reads: People can find out more about the proposals here and give their views via an on line survey. Also, if you do not have a computer you can request a paper survey questionnaire from the Council. 

The questionnaire has a series of questions for you to answer and then has 2 questions where you can enter your own comments, and this is where you and club members can help. Discussions with the Council over the past few years has constantly stressed the benefits of bowling, especially to the elderly as,

  • Health. The constant movement, walking and bending during the course of a game is very beneficial and, in some cases, possibly the only method of taking exercise for some people.
  • Social. The contact interaction with other players during practice, matches and general visits to the green is of great value, especially to those bowlers who, for whatever reason, live alone. Also, with some clubs, the club house is open on certain days during the winter months, which again helps members to get out of the house and socialise with their friends.

Comments along these lines will hopefully strengthen our case. Remember, the more questionnaires that we can submit, the greater our chance of being listened to so, bearing in mind the deadline of 14th January, please start sending them in as soon as you can, and perhaps you can ask friends, neighbours and relatives to fill one in as well.

A second request on a similar vain concerning a Petition for the Government to save our Public Parks spaces can be accessed via the link

If we can get enough people to sign the petition we might get the 100,000 signatures it needs for the matter to be discussed in Parliament.

Finally, can I ask you to circulate this email to as many of your members as possible? 


(Saturday 15 December 2018)

Council Consultation on Greens


Malcolm Russell has sent a letter to all Club Sectraries which is reproduced below. Due to severe budget cuts the Council will be reviewing green usage and clubs taking on responsibility for the greens and pavillions. It is understood that these changes will not affect the 2019 season.

Dear Secretary/ Treasurer/ Club or League official,

You may be aware that Bolton Council recently approved, for consultation, proposals for the Council’s 2 year budget for 2019-21. Included in that report was a proposal that:

‘The Council will review all 28 bowling greens and their usage and will use Community Asset Transfer powers, where appropriate, to deliver greenspace functions through a new partnership approach with local communities’ 

This would mean clubs taking on responsibility for the greens and pavilions.

If you wish to see further information on the wider budget proposals or to comment on any of them please follow this link 

Consultation responses can be made online. If you require a paper copy of the form please reply to this e-mail and we will arrange to have it posted out to you.

Consultation will run until January 14, 2019. A final report taking feedback into account will go back to the Cabinet on February 11, 2019 and to a meeting of full council for approval on February 20. Given this timetable I would anticipate that preparations for the 2019 season will be as in previous years.


Malcolm Russell

 Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services)

Directorate of Place

Ellesmere House

Mayor Street Depot

Ellesmere Street



Tel: 01204 334067



(Friday 14 December 2018)

BPVABA Forthcoming Competitions and Date Changes

We are fast approaching the end of the season and you may have seen some of the following already on the website. On Monday this week we started the Secretaries Shield Competition but were unable to complete due to the prolonged games. In the five hours of bowling some bowlers had been on the green for some four hours. As a consequence, it was decided that the final two matches will be played on Monday, 13th August at 1pm at Longsight. The ‘A’ Section final will be between Ken Lord of Astley Bridge ‘B’ and Bob Williams of Longsight ‘A’. The winner of this match will then play against the winner of the ‘B’ Section final, David Dixon of Great Lever ‘B’ for the Secretaries Shield. Please come and support these bowlers on Monday next week.

The arrangements for the Merit Competitions due to be played at Moss Bank on 10th September at 11:30 are currently unchanged. Please send names of your team’s qualifying entries (see Rule 2.4.5) in the Merit Competition to Ken Holcroft by 5th September.

The finalists of the Harold Orrell Cup and Norman Little Memorial Trophy are now known. The Harold Orrell Cup will be competed between Sunnyside Park and Tonge Park ‘A’. Sunnyside have a 55 chalks lead on the Tonge Park team but Tonge have overcome a higher handicap in an earlier round so a close competition is predicted. The neutral green chosen for the Harold Orrell Cup is Astley Bridge on Monday, 17th September.

The Norman Little Memorial Trophy, scheduled for Tuesday, 18th September will be played at Great Lever Park between Queen’s Park ‘A’ and Egerton Park ‘B’. In this contest the Queen’s Park team have a 55 chalks advantage over their rivals but like Tonge have overcome a high (45) handicap in an earlier round to the final.

Both the Harrold Orrell Cup and Norman Little Memorial Trophy start at 2pm on the neutral greens with practice starting at 1.20pm.

The final competition of this year’s calendar is ‘The Champions’ versus ‘The Rest’. The champions of both the ‘A’ and ‘B’ Sections still in contention and so the Champions are not as yet known. The original date for the ‘The Champions’ versus ‘The Rest’ has had to be changed because the date clashed with the last 16 of the Waterloo; the date is now Thursday, 27th September at Darbishire Park with the match starting at 2pm with practice from 1.20pm. Please forward the name of your representative to play in the ‘Rest’ team to Ken also by 5th September.



(Thursday 09 August 2018)

BetFred Trophy - Preliminaries - 9th July 2018 - Start and Scratch Out 12:30 - Revised Draw

Please find the draw for the preliminaries of the BetFred Trophy below:

  Bet Fred Trophy  - Qualifying Round - 9th July 2018
  Breightmet                    (Clive Fenn) Section   Egerton Park                      (Ken Holcroft) Section
1 W.Leonard (Tonge 'A') A   G.Manning (Tonge 'A') A
2 S.Doel (Tonge 'B') B   D.Povey (Tonge 'A') A
3 E.Goodwin (Tonge 'A) A   P.Doel (Tonge 'B') B
4 R.Leigh (Horwich 'A') A   J.Wolfendale (Haslam Park) A
5 G.Dunn (Egerton Park 'B') B   L.Beeson (Tonge 'B') B
6 P.Hardman (Egerton Park 'A') A   C.Cowsill (Horwich 'A') A
7 R.Dunn (Egerton Park 'B') B   D.Barton (Astley Bridge 'A') A
8 R.Williams (Longsight 'A') A   G.Clowes (Longsight 'A') A
9 J.Mort (Astley Bridge 'A' A   R.Wilcock (Astley Bridge 'B') A
10 K.Lord (Astley Bridge 'B') A   J Barton (Heywood Park) A
11 K Crook (Haslam Park) A   J.Hodkinson (Haslam Park) A
12 C.Fenn (Great Lever 'A') A   C.Dixon (Great Lever 'A') A
13 C.Barnes (Moss Bank 'A') A   C.Matthews (Moss Bank 'B') A
14 R.Forrest (Moss Bank 'A') A   V.Southern  (Moss Bank 'A') A
15 J.Duker (Merehall) B   I.Salisbury (Astley Bridge 'B') A
    15     15
  Haslam Park             (Arnold Pollitt) Section   Moss Bank - Top Green      (David Grundy) Section
1 R.Perry (Tonge 'A') A   C.Leonard (Tonge 'A') A
2 R.Ankers (Tonge 'A') A   M.Bailey (Tonge 'A') A
3 F.Thompson (Horwich 'A') A   K.Andrews (Horwich 'A') A
4 M.Haslam (Horwich 'A') A   J.Forrest (Egerton Park 'A') A
5 S.Swannell (Egerton Park 'A') A   T.Armstrong (Egerton Park 'A') A
6 H.Boyd (Egerton Park 'A') A   K.Breen (Egerton Park 'A') A
7 A.Cook (Egerton Park 'A') A   E.Ellard (Longsight 'A') A
8 P.Sharples (Longsight 'A') A   K.Latham (Astley Bridge 'B') A
9 M.Bradshaw (Astley Bridge 'A') A   P.Pover (Astley Bridge 'B') A
10 D.r Beckett (Heywood Park) A   E.Thompson (Haslam Park) A
11 D.Loheide (Tonge 'B') B   S.Taylor (Great Lever 'A') A
12 R.Spedding (Great Lever 'A') A   A.Ashworth (Great Lever 'B') B
13 R.Brookes (Moss Bank 'A') A   R.Ames (Great Lever 'B') B
14 K.Steward (Moss bank 'B') A   D.Grundy (Moss Bank 'A') A
15 J.Parr (Merehall) B   T.Owen (Merehall B
    15     15


  • Start and scratch out is 12:30 pm BUT for the final the following week it will be 11:30 am. The final will be at Sunnyside Park,
  • In any matches involving an 'A' section player and a 'B' section player, the 'A' section player starts on a handicap of minus three (-3),
  • In every match the players spin for first use of the block,
  • No practicing before the competition starts, but any player with a bye in the first round who will be playing an opponent who has already  played a match in the first round may have a 10 minute practice before the match.



(Friday 06 July 2018)

Mixed Pairs - 2018


Mixed Pairs - Finals day is Monday 18th June at Merehall - with start and scratch out 11:30. Click here for the draw.  

Bet Fred Mixed Pairs: The qualifying round of the competition will be played on Monday, 11th June (weather permitting - otherwise Friday 15th June.) The following players should report to Westhoughton Central Park for a 12:30pm start and scratch-out. The Draw for partners and, if necessary, players to be balloted out will be made at the green on the day.


Ladies. Angela Cook and Anne Walker (Egerton Park ‘A’), Kay Williams (Egerton Park ‘B’), Avril Williams (Longsight ‘A’), Janet Callow (Moss Bank ‘A’), Brenda Fenn, Sonia Forrest, Margaret Barton, Hazel Brady, B. Braintree, Barbara Entwistle, Joan Hayes, Angela Morgan, Mary Southern and Norma Williams (Moss Bank ‘C’), Joan Aldred (Queens Park ‘A’), Brenda Ainsworth and Norma Buckley (Queens Park ‘B’), Sue Smith (Longsight ‘B’), Pam Jennings and Eileen Hill (Horwich PH ‘B’), Kath Beardsworth and  Lynne Spedding (Great Lever ‘B’), Lynda Baker (Westhoughton ‘B’) and Sandra Doel (Tonge ‘B’).

Gentlemen. Howard Boyd, John Forrest, Kevin Breen, Steve Swannell, Peter Hardman and Tom Hardman (Egerton Park ‘A’), Geoff Dunn (Egerton Park ‘C’), Bob Williams, Eric Williams, Peter Sharples, Kevan Grundy and Peter Turner (Longsight ‘A’), Joe Hodkinson (Haslam Park), Cliff Barnes, Clive Matthews, Ray Forrest and Dougie Turner(Moss Bank ‘A’), John Mort and David Barton (Astley Bridge ‘A’), Kevan Latham (Astley Bridge ‘B’), Denver Smith (Longsight ‘A’), Colin Wrigley and Terry Gallimore (Westhoughton ‘B’), Charlie Cowsill (Horwich PH ‘A’), Mike Jennings and John Hill (Horwich PH ‘B’), Clive Fenn and Ron Spedding (Great Lever ‘A’), M Ashworth and R Beardsworth (Great Lever ‘B’), George Manning, R Perry and Michael Bailey (Tonge ‘A’), Derek Loheide, Phil Doel and L Beeson (Tonge ‘B’).



(Wednesday 06 June 2018)

Darbishire Park A withdraw from the league in 2018

It is with regret that the Team Secretary (Denver Smith) of Darbishire Park 'A' has had to withdraw the team from the 2018 season of the league due to not being able to field a full team regularly since the start of the season. For most matches this season between 7 and 10 bowlers have been available. Denver in his email stated "At best we can only turn up with about ten players on Tuesdays and eight on Wednesdays and Thursdays. We are in a no-win situation and it is not fair on opposing teams for us to turn up with only seven or eight players."

As a consequence, the Team will be struck from the league on the website. This will mean all results associated with Darbishire Park 'A', players and individual matches played will no longer be recorded. All points will be deleated and indivdual averages automatically adjusted as if the matches had not been played.

In a pole of Executive Committee members, it has been decided to allow "all players affected by the withdrawal of Darbishire Park 'A'  to move to other teams in the BPVABA". As a consequence, players currently registered to Darbishire Park 'A' are free to move to other teams in the Association without penalty. This all should be ratified at the next Executive Committee meeting to be held in June.

Finally, we hope that in 2019 we may be able to welcome back into the fold a new team from Darbishire Park.

(Saturday 12 May 2018)

Fraser Huyton Pairs - Green Allocation for Preliminaries 2018


 Sponsored by BETFRED

 Fraser-Huyton Pairs: The qualifying round for the competition will be played on Monday 14th May (weather permitting – otherwise Friday 18th May). Players should report to their green for a 12:30pm start and scratch-out.

 Astley Bridge (Official:  Ken Holcroft)

 Eric Cheatle & David Grundy (Moss Bank Park ‘A’);  Sandra Doel & Phil Doel (Tonge Park  ‘B’); Bob Williams & Eric Williams (Longsight ‘A’); John Forrest & Paul Hayes (Egerton Park ‘A’); Keith Andrews & Frank Thompson (Horwich PH ‘A’); Jim Hodkinson & Joe Hodkinson  (Haslam Park);  George Manning & W.Morris   (Tonge Park ‘A’);  Michael Hilton & Michael Bailey (Tonge Park ‘A’); Walt  Callow & Ron Spedding (Great Lever Park ‘B’); Rob Aimes & Albert Ashworth (Great Lever Park ‘B’); Rob Porter & Gordon Cain (Great Lever Park ‘A’).

 Great Lever Park  (Official: Alan Hamer)

 Cliff Barnes & Jim McGuiness (Moss Bank Park ‘A’ & ‘B’); Ron Brookes & Ken Shaw (Moss Bank Park ‘A’); Peter Sharples & Peter Turner (Longsight ‘A’); John Mort & Gordon Butler (Astley Bridge ‘A’); Howard Boyd & Martin Walton (Egerton Park ‘A’); Trevor Hope & Lesley Hope (Horwich PH ‘B’); Ray Ankers & Brian Boyes (Tonge Park ‘A’); V.Haughton & Eric Smith (Tonge Park ‘B’); Chris Leonard & W.Leonard (Tonge Park ‘A’); Frank Morton & Dave Beresford (Moss Bank ‘A’ & Haslam Park);

 Heywood Park (Official: Clive Fenn)

 Brian Hamer & Graham McGuiness (Moss Bank Park ‘B’); Ray Forrest & John Wolfendale (Moss Bank Park ‘A’ & Haslam park); Mike Howard & Les Fishwick (Longsight ‘A’); Gordon Ratcliffe & Roy Brierley (Egerton Park ‘A’) Pam Jennings & Carlie Cowsill (Horwich Park ‘A’ & ‘B’); R.Perry & Rod Hall (Tonge Park ‘A’); Anne Foster & Ronald Keefe (Tonge Park ‘B’); Rob Brearsworht &Brian Hotchkiss  (Great Lever Park ‘B’ & ‘A’);  Clive Fenn & Charlie Dixon (Great Lever Park ‘A’); Steve Taylor & W.Mason (Great Lever Park ‘A’).

 Tonge Park (Official : Alan Douglas)

 Clive Mathews & Keith Clarkson (Moss Bank Park ‘B’); Dougie Turner & Jim Entwistle (Moss Bank Park ‘A’) ; Eddie Thompson & Jim Kennedy (Haslam Park); Mark Bradshaw  & Mick Fletcher (Astley Bridge ‘A’); Kevin Breen & Peter Hardman (Egerton Park ‘A’); Geoff Dunn & Rita Dunn (Egerton Park ‘C’); Brian Burns & Keith Crook (Haslam Park); alan Tinsley & Stuart Pritchard (Great Lever Park ‘A’); Malcolm Cummings & Rod Cuming (Great Lever Park ‘A’);  Ian Bebbington & Tom Fraser (Great Lever Park’B’ & ‘A’).

The above can be found in a table form here.

(Tuesday 08 May 2018)

AGM - 25th January 2018 - Papers

The first AGM of the Bolton Parks Veterans Amatuer Bowling Association was held at the Railway Club on 25th January. Previously we have held an Annual Secretaries Meeting. Papers related to the meeting can be found by clicking the links below.


ASM Minutes - 12th January  2017

Secretary's Report

Annual Accounts for 2017

An up to date copy of the Association Rules as approved at the meeting.

Officers and Elected Members of the Executive Committee

Draft Minutes of the Secretaries Meeting of 21st September 2017

2018 Fixtures Matrix

2018 Association Competitions and Team Competition Draw and Handicaps

Draft Minutes of the AGM held on 25th January 2018 

Dates of Future Meetings

Secretaries Meeting – 22nd March 2018 – at The Railway at 13:30 

Secretaries Meeting – 20th September 2018 – at The Railway at 13:30

Presentation - 7th November 2018 – at The Railway 13:30 for 14:00

AGM - 24th January 2019 – at The Railway at 13:30.






(Friday 02 February 2018)

Proposed Rule Changes and Papers for AGM 2018

Dear All

The following was sent out to all Team Secretaries, Team Captains and Results Contacts on 12th December but I am concious that many have not seen the email and attachements due to emails going into Trash and Spam mailboxes and so they are here. Please click on the links for the relevant documents.

"Please find attached a copy of proposed rules changes being put forward by the Executive Committee to be approved or otherwise at the AGM on 25th January 2018. The proposed rules are being sent now in advance of all papers for the AGM to give teams more time to discuss the proposals. I have also attached a supporting document giving a rational for the proposed changes and highlighting rules that you may wish to consider in detail. Please remember when we have the AGM, each team will have only one vote on each motion. Due to the complexity and number of changes we may have a number of motions for different sections of the proposed rules etc.

While the above changes are being proposed by the Executive, two separate proposals have been submitted by Team Secretaries. For completeness these are also attached so these too can be discussed in your Clubs. (40 yard proposal and 10 players in B Section)

I will be writing to Team Secretaries shortly with all the papers for the AGM. Could Team Captains and Team Results Contacts, please contact your Team Secretary to make sure they are aware of these papers?"

Papers circulated 1/1/18 click each document to download


Minutes of ASM 12/1/17

Secretary's Report

Notices of Motion

40 yard proposal

10 players in B Section

Proposed Rule Changes

Supporting document to Proposed Changes in Rules

Executive Members - AGM - 2018

Team Secretaries Meeting Minutes - 21/9/17

Competition Dates - 2018 this document was corrected on 2/1/18


If you require a hard copy of these documents, please do not hesitate to contact me on

(Tuesday 02 January 2018)

The State of the Greens


Email from Malcolm Russell to Clive Fenn and Keith Andrews email below - 30/10/17

Hi Both

As you know we had committed to undertaking works on the greens in October.

 I’ve spoken a few times in recent weeks to our contractor who has made several visits to greens in an attempt to carry out the scarifying works prior to vertidraining. Since the heavy rainfall we had in September and early October the greens have been too wet to scarify without risking unnecessary damage. I have spoken with our contractor again this morning and given the arrival of the frost we have agreed that scarifying now would not be appropriate and will be deferred until early Spring (hopefully February), vertidraining will now take place in the coming weeks.

Scarifying and vertidraining works have been completed at Longsight and Egerton Park.

Could you update your contacts?



Malcolm Russell

Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services)

Bolton Council



Email from Malcolm Russell to Clive Fenn as response to Alan Calvert email below - 1/2/17

Hi Clive, 

The Fees & Charges report is going to the Executive Member on 20th February.

We have never suggested that clubs apply their own fertiliser (other than by agreement and using a suitable contractor).

I’m just waiting for a couple of non-bowling things to be resolved in the next few days and then I was probably going to suggest we meet late February/ early March. 




Email from Alan Calvert to Clive Fenn - 31/1/17

Hello Clive. We are having a committee meeting next Tuesday morning (Feb 7) and our annual pre-season meeting a week later (Feb 14). Do you know any more details about the costs and additional responsibilities we face this year? When does the relevant council committee meet? Will there be an opportunity for further input from the bowling forum before that? It strikes me that the council should not be suggesting that clubs should carry out their own fertiliser operations.  Surely that should be covered by the massive hike in the cost of bowling “permits”. Alan Calvert, Secretary, Longsight Bowling Club, Harwood.


The Bolton League Representatives met with Malcolm Russell again on 14th December. A useful meeting was held where we discussed the potential and benefits of setting up a Forum; summary results from the Questionnaire sent to Clubs in early November. We received responses from most Clubs / Teams who use the greens. We also met with Tracy Ashton manager of Bolton's Sports and Active Living and discussed potential funding streams for the future. The notes of the meeting can be found here. A one page summary of responses from clubs can be found here and a table of green users and social users gained from the questionnaire. The number of Bolton Parks greens users calculated from Lancashire returns in Bolton is shown here



The Council represented by Malcolm Russell and Bolton League Representatives met on 21st October to discuss ways forward for bowling on Parks greens in Bolton bearing in mind the condition of those greens during the 2016 season. 

The Notes recorded from the meeting (Forum), along with the Council’s estimate of green users and a questionnaire which all teams / clubs are being asked to complete by clicking the links.

The background to making these papers available is summarized by the following; 

“The borough has 26 greens of which around 23 greens are being bowled on by teams in leagues the remaining are being maintained at a lower standard but not used. The total cost to the Council to maintain the greens and pavilions / facilities is £204,000 annually. Of this total £80,000 was for buildings (rates, buildings maintenance, heating, etc). The Council receives £21,500 from permits and evening teams annually. The budget for greens maintenance was significantly cut in 2010 with the result that the greens have shown a decline in condition since. It is estimated that approximately an additional £50,000 is required annually to maintain the greens in the condition they were in 2010. The Council have three options a) rationalisation (the closure of some less used greens) – this is the least preferred option by all involved; b) a significant increase in income (the cost of permits might have to be increased to £20); and c) Self Management of greens (this is unlikely to be a preferred option for most of the Clubs). As a forum, the Council has asked the representatives at the meeting to get usage data from member clubs and float the options under consideration.”

In light of the above Team / Club Secretaries have been asked to complete the questionnaire on behalf of their Team or Club and return by the 2nd December in time for the next meeting of the Forum being scheduled mid-December. Clubs / Teams are asked to consult with others in their teams or clubs so a broad view can be gained. Once returned the questionnaire will be annalysed and used for future direction by the Forum.

Clive Fenn

Email from Malcolm Russell to Clive Fenn - 10/10/16

Dear all,

Just to let you know that the air injection work is proceeding, I’ve attached a sample of the photos our contractor has provided.

I can also advise that we are carrying out an additional verti-cut of as many greens as we can while the weather is still appropriate.To date we have done Moss Bank Park (x2), Astley Bridge Park, Westhoughton Central Park (x2) and are at Farnworth Park today.




Email from Malcolm Russell to Clive Fenn - 3/10/16

Hello Clive,

We do share your concerns about the drainage at a number of sites, especially as many of the greens are of significant age and have trees growing adjacent to them.

We did carry out work in April around the greens at Great Lever Park, Heywood Park & Mytham Park and will prioritise the sites you mention for investigation this winter. However, resources are limited so it will depend on the extent of works at those 3 sites as to whether we can investigate other sites (we have Thomasson Park, Kearsley Park and Astley Bridge Park in mind, particularly due to the potential problem with tree roots).

Edging boards are something we don’t have the resources to do but if clubs want to do it themselves then I don’t see a problem with that.

We are looking at the possibility of having benches painted by Community Payback (Probation Service) in some of the larger parks but it will be dependent on other demands on them whether this is possible, our priority for this work is Moss Bank Park. Hedges and shrub beds will be maintained as usual this winter.

We also have some Capital funding available and are currently prioritising how this can be best spent on surfacing works at green entrances and around the pavilions. Dependent upon the outcome of drainage investigations we may need to use some of this money to address drainage issues.

I appreciate the proposal for Notice boards and this is something we can perhaps discuss once we know better what maintenance is to be carried out next year.

Communication as to fixtures would be helpful and we will make best endeavours to assist with the timing of mowing operations. However, our capacity to be flexible is very limited.

As you are aware Bolton Council has had significant cuts in recent years. Due to reductions in staffing numbers we no longer have any individual staff dealing with specific customer groups as a first port of call. Everything has to come through our small business team who manage our generic e-mail address, ,  and enquiry line. Whilst we appreciate that many users prefer to have a name to contact, the generic approach actually will give a faster response to issues and anything more management related will be forwarded to myself to deal with. If you raise issues via the generic email address, , but they are not addressed then you can escalate the matter to myself directly.

I will be contacting yourself and other league representatives shortly to invite you to a meeting to discuss the future management and maintenance of the Council’s Bowling Greens.


Malcolm Russell

Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services)

Bolton Council


Email to Malcolm Russell from Clive Fenn - 2/10/16

Dear Malcolm

We had a Team Secretaries Meeting of the Bolton Parks Veterans Amateur Bowling Association on 22nd September when the work that was being undertaken by the Council on the greens was discussed. As I am sure you can guess this resulted in a lot of discussion with the outcome I was asked to write to you in my capacity of Secretary of the Association.

Whilst we welcome all the work that is being undertaken in the closed season by the Council on our greens, concern was expressed that some works could be negated if other works were not executed. In particular concern was expressed about the state of the drains on many of the bowling greens. The moss might be removed and treated in the autumn only to return in the spring if the drainage is not sorted. In particular, three greens were highlighted, Sunnyside, Great Lever and the lower green on Moss Bank but there are many others that are experiencing issues with drainage. It was noted that Great Lever Park green’s drains had received attention pre-season and flow restored only to be blocked again now. The Moss Bank green was observed to have more than a 6 inch depth of water in the gullies at times after rain during the season. Despite reported works on the Sunnyside green, the green has suffered all season. As with the works that are being undertaken on the greens at the present time, are similar works being planned to look at the drainage at all greens?

Other members commented on the state of the boards around the greens, many are in a poor state and rotten and need replacing. Others were concerned at the state of the general surroundings, benches, hedges and borders and the like as to whether these would be maintained as in previous years. Another member suggested that a Notice Board is put up on a fence or the wall of the club so maintenance crews could pass on messages to the bowlers locally when works have been done. For example to let bowlers know, fertiliser or moss killer had been applied and not to use the green until ....; that the green is closed; it has been cut etc, etc. If this could be implemented it would encourage good will and show communication with clubs locally.

Through discussion, we realised we were unable to communicate with the Parks Department (Neighbourhood Services) effectively and that we as an Association and as individual clubs needed a point of contact so we could advise the Department when the greens were being used for League matches, League Cup and Club Competitions so that the cutting of greens could be timed to be completed before play is due to start. To this end, I agreed that in future, I would advise the Council representative of all of the Association’s League Fixtures at the start of the season, once we knew who the representative was.

In summary, could you please let us know what works are planned on our greens and surroundings in the coming months and who is the point of contact? In return in future, we would keep your department informed of our fixtures and club contacts.




Email from Malcolm Russell to Clive Fenn - 19/9/16

Dear all,

I can advise that all greens have now been scarified and Egerton Park and Longsight Park have been solid tined, both of these have restricted access which prevents access with the air injection equipment.

 I’ve attached some sample photos of the work taking place.


  Malcolm Russell


Email from Ken Lord to Clive Fenn - 9/9/16

Thanks Clive for forwarding Malcolm Russel's notification as regarding the greens - which is good news - While all this work is about to take place we at Astley Bridge Parks Bowling Club, would like to give a big thanks to Kev Latham for kick starting this action into place - all the hard work and correspondence, getting MP's and local councillors to the forefront just to see what state some of the greens were in. Well done Kev. Also to yourself for pushing it forward to all club secretaries. Ken (Sec Astley Bridge) 


Email to Clubs from Clive Fenn - 9/9/16

In the last few days I have received communications from Malcolm Russell advising initial works to be undertaken on the Parks Greens in the Borough. The emails from Malcolm Russell are shown below but in essence we can continue to use the greens until the end of the day on 14th September. However, should the mowing team arrive to cut the green during the afternoon before then please let them cut the green. Maintenance work will start in earnest on 15th September (weather permitting).

Two paragraphs from Malcolm Russell’s email to Clive and LCCGBA members headed by Keith Andrews dated 7th September

“Our contractor has confirmed that all scheduled greens have been sprayed with Moss killer and selective weed killer (where appropriate).

The works to scarify the greens is currently scheduled for 15th – 18th September, weather permitting. We do not have a detailed schedule of which greens will be done when but I have asked the contractor to advise daily (with photos if practical) of the greens that have been completed.

And Malcolm’s response to a question from me ‘Does the scheduled work due to start on 15th September mean that bowlers can use the greens until that date?’- email received 8th September.

“I suppose the greens could be used informally until Wednesday (14th) but please note that they may be uneven as the mosskiller will have taken effect. Also, we are cutting them once next week but the team have been advised that the greens will be closed so may re-organise their workload and cut some greens in the afternoons.”


Advice - following the spraying of weed and moss killer on 31st August and 2nd September on Parks Greens would all bowlers please wash their hands after bowling. Also it might be sensible to wash your bowls as some bowls have been found to be pitted afte use.


Email from Malcolm Russell to Clive Fenn - 1/9/16

Dear Clive

Thanks for the telephone call earlier. Apologies again if the people we’ve been speaking to were not the most appropriate representatives of the Leagues, we can address that moving forward.

I believe you will have seen my original e-mail to Keith Andrews (26th July) regarding the proposed programme of works.

More recently (22nd August) I wrote to Keith:

 ‘Just to advise that the spraying of the greens will take place on Wednesday & Friday afternoons next week (weather permitting). I’ve advised our contractor which greens we have bookings for on Wednesday afternoons so they can be avoided, we don’t have any booked usage on Friday afternoons. The greens will be fine to be used in the evenings after spraying.’


 Malcolm Russell

Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services)

Bolton Council


Kevan Lathom email to MPs David Crosby and Chris Green and Councillor John Walsh - 31/8/16


Kevan Lathom email to MPs David Crosby and Chris Green and Councillor John Walsh - 31/8/16

Hello to our MPs David Crausby / Chris Green / councillor Walsh and everyone in the Bolton park green action group (BPGAG)

Thanks all of you who have helped in bringing to the council's attention the problems with the Park Bowling greens and facilities.

Today I received the final conclusion of all our complaints from the borough solicitor. (letter attached) Briefly

1) With regards to Malcolm Russell (head of neighbourhood services) --- It is the council's decision that he has not refused to meet with us (being Bolton Park green action group)  '...because no request had been made.....'

Well, I am sure that our MP's and councillor Walsh will have something to say about that.!

2) As for the park bowling greens being ' not fit for purpose ' - well -- no acceptance or denial of this claim has been made by the council.

3)Some work is to start on some greens from today ( see letter)

3)As for work on the greens from the 9th September, the various club secretaries will have to speak to our League representatives after the council's contractor has carried out an assessment of each of the park bowling greens, ''....... following agreement with neighbourhood services '' (the letter doesn't read as though they have started the assessments yet !!).

4)The medium to long term issues of the park bowling greens are being prepared by the  council and will be discussed with Councillor Peel in the next couple of weeks (this was happening at the end of June by the way)  and will then be released  to our league representatives for circulation to the club secretaries.

5)Therefore, as the council officers only want to discuss with our league officials how they intend moving forward with these medium/long term proposals then it is up to our officials to inform us what is happening --- as the council has promised to inform them.

6) Could our league officials keep us all informed via our web site then we can all know what is happening to our greens.

Thank you for all your help in getting this work done on our greens in the coming weeks.

I know that the vast majority of us will not be happy with the councils final reply to the complaints over these last 4 months, but the council have made it clear , officially,  that they will only deal with our league representatives.

Kind regards

Kevan Latham


Kevan Lathom email to A McDonna (Copied to MP David Crosby and Councillor John Walsh) - 25/8/16

Dear Ms McDonna,

Thanks for your reply yesterday.

Unfortunately I did not receive your letter of the 5th August (by post or email).

Thank you for attaching it now  and for confirming that our letters of the 3rd + 5th August will also be included in your complaints review.

I was not aware of  '' More detailed discussions are yet to take place with the Executive Cabinet Member concerning options both in the short and longer term and no further information will be available until those discussions are completed'' 

We are all pleased and relieved with this statement --- as all the club secretaries took it that the ''26/7/16 email from Malcolm Russell '' on the Bolton Bowling Association’s website was the ''council's action plan for the bowling greens'' -especially since we thought that we had clarified the matter.

In your letter of August 5th you conclude your 3rd paragraph '... no further information will be available until those discussions are completed.'

As it is some 3 weeks since then,  and that we have already been informed ( on 26/7/16 email )  that some work will start late August - the park green club secretaries would like to know how the council's  ''Executive Cabinet Member''  will inform them of the work that is now imminent --- in order to help restore confidence to the bowling community in the parks dept.

If this last point is not your domain would you please direct it to the correct department. (Maybe they could post the information on the ' Bowling Association’s website' )


Kevan Latham (Bolton Park Green Action Group)


Kevan Lathom email to MP David Crausby and Councillor John Walsh - 22/8/16

Hello David/John

It is now nearly time for the park green work to take place and we still haven't got a detailed schedule of work for each of the park's bowling greens for this month or next ---- nor a commitment from the parks dept/contractor to liaise with each of the park green club secretaries.

We consider this essential so that vital resources are put to best use and the park green bowling community can be reassured that proper work is being carried out.

Please can you do your best to encourage this to be done by the council - as our previous letter detailing this (3/8/2016) has not been responded to and our concern is that our greens are not going to get the proper treatment they need in preparation for next year.

Kind regards

Kevan Latham 


Kevan Lathom email to Stephen Young - 3/8/16


Please find attached my letter which has constructive comments/observations on the report/action planned for the Borough's Park bowling greens.

I consider that the comments in this letter (Click here for link) will be useful in formulating your response in the  complaint ref: ENV5480518 Please forward this to all concerned -so that we can resolve the problems prior to the end of the bowling season.

Thank you in anticipation


Kevan Latham  (bolton park green action group) (hand delivered letter to dept of place--- town Hall 4th August 2016) 


26/7/16 - Email from Malcolm Russell to Keith Andrews and Ken Holcroft

From :
Date : 26/07/2016 - 12:35 (GMTST)
To : ,
Subject : Parks Bowling Greens

Hi both,

I’ve been out today with our contractor (Will Kidd of Fine Turf Services) to visit Moss Bank Park and Kearsley Park as we discussed. We also called in at Astley Bridge Park on the way past for a visual inspection.

Following last nights’ rain both greens were quite wet but taking core samples showed that this moisture is only in the top half inch or so in the thatch layer, the soil structure below that was quite dry and the grass roots had good depth of penetration. Testing showed that there was some compaction in the top inch or two. Apart from the problem area close to the trees Kearsley was in very good condition

Will’s advice is that:

  • We need to raise the height of cut to 6-7mm because of the size of machine we are using but have the greens verti-cut on a regular basis as there is too much horizontal growth which is creating the thatch that is holding water. This in turn helps moss growth.
  • Moss treatment in late August/early September along with Selective weed control as required on a green by green basis
  • Scarification and removal of arisings in September before it gets too wet.
  • Air injection to relieve the compaction in the top few inches, again in late September or early October.

Based on Will’s advice I would propose that instead of implementing works on 2 greens (closing them at the end of August) as we discussed, we close all the greens early (say Friday 9th September) and carry out the following actions:

  1. We will raise the height of cut and look at options for verti-cutting
  2. We have all the greens treated for moss in late August and with a selective weedkiller where appropriate (either the whole green or spot treat)
  3. The greens are all scarified and arisings removed after the greens have been closed (late September weather permitting, so a month earlier than last year)
  4. Air injection of all the greens the machine can access and solid tining of the remaining greens (currently Egerton Park & Longsight Park)

Could you pass this information to the other colleagues who attended so that this information can be circulated as appropriate. I don’t have access to all the fixtures but my understanding is that the league fixtures would normally have finished by the 9th September.

Astley Bridge Park

We arrived at Astley Bridge Park this morning just as a contractor was leaving. I understand that he had carried out solid tining work on the green under instruction from the Bowling Club. The Council had not given consent for that work and had not seen any Risk Assessment or Insurance for the operation of machinery in a public park.

I would also advise that the green at Astley Bridge Park was mown yesterday so if any matches are played today the green may be running poorly with a risk of bowls being deflected as a result of the unauthorised works this morning. We will be mowing the green tomorrow and that will assist but will also close over most of the holes, making the work and expenditure by the club fairly ineffectual as the main issue is with the thatch layer.  


Malcolm Russell

Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services)

Bolton Council

27/7/16 - Kevan's email to Chris Green

Hello Mr Green

I understand that a number of your constituents have arranged to meet with you in the bowlers centre at Westhoughton Park on Friday 29th July at 1pm.

I have been invited to come along (Kevan Latham --- Bolton Park Green Action Group) in order to give support to resolving the problems at Westhoughton Park bowling greens - which are part of the action group.

In order to assist you in understanding the overwhelming neglect of these recreational facilities I have given below the web link of the Bolton and district bowling web site - which give a 40 page 'sample dossier' of complaints and responses from the various councillors and dept in Bolton Council offices -- and as you can see -- the complaints have largely been 'ignored' and paid short shrift.

Park green clubs have started to do remedial works themselves in order to try and prevent the greens deteriorating beyond economical repair.

We all look forward to seeing you then

Kind regards

Kevan Latham 

24/7/16 - Kevan's Open Email as per list

FAO  Bolton Council chief executive and Malcolm Russell - Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services) Bolton Council.

copies to Astley bridge bowling committee

+  Bolton Park green action group members

+  Bolton news.

Sirs, Mme

I attach a reply and action statement to your/Malcolm Russell letter of the 13th July (recd 16th July)

Your urgent attention is required

Thank you in anticipation of your cooperation in this important matter.

Yours sincerely

Kevan Latham (Bolton Park Greens action group)

24/7/16 - Kevan Latham's letter to Ms Asquith Bolton CEO in response to Malcolm Russell reply of 13/7/16 below find here.

13/7/16 - Malcolm Russells reply to Kevan's letter of 8th July to Mrs Asquith can be found here

8/7/16 - Kevan Latham's letter to Ms Asquith Bolton CEO, David Crausby MP, Councillor Walsh and the Bolton News can beaccessed here

7/7/16 - Kevan Latham's open letter to Councillors and the Bolton News can be accessed here.

To view Kevan's detailed schedule click here as at 2/7/16

8/7/16 - Kevan Latham's email 

Hello David +John + Bolton News Editor + everyone on my distribution list

Well -- time is passing and our greens are getting worse and the parks'

officials are still ignoring our requests for a meeting.

I have therefore delivered a letter (as attached) this morning to Margaret Asquith - the new chief executive of Bolton Council

-- who has also been contacted by MP David Crausby on this matter on our behalf.

As you can see from the letter there are now parks bowling clubs' members who are endeavouring to do some work on their own greens - because the council refuse to do them properly.

Therefore, I think that it be a good idea if we inform the council of the work that needs doing with a price for doing it ( on 'fit for purpose ' and 'health and safety grounds' ---- slipping on unacceptable levels of slimy moss and physical sprains due to the poor condition of the greens) .

I am going to start with Astley Bridge in my case (being my club green) - to see what sort of response I get from the council.

If anyone wants to comment on the above then I will be happy to listen - and maybe if there are enough clubs interested in taking this course of action then we could meet up and have a co-ordinated plan that would impact the council more profoundly.

kind regards

Kevan Latham

8/7/16 - Kevan Latham's letter to Ms Asquith Bolton CEO, David Crausby MP, Councillor Walsh and the Bolton News can be accessed here

7/7/16 - Kevan Latham's open letter to Councillors and the Bolton News can be accessed here.

1/7/16 Email from Kevan Lathom with copy to David Crausby MP

Hi everyone on my distribution list

A number of us (Clive Fenn / Rod Pemrick / Neil Meachem + me) met with David Crausby MP today with a view to putting pressure on the council to meet with us to discuss saving our Parks bowling greens - since we first approached them in mid May with the help of Councillor Walsh.

We all put our case effectively and also discussed the matter of Moss bank fencing.

Mr Crausby was very good at listening and asking questions in order to take on board all the many things that we said.

He was very supportive of our case and he said that he would do his best to help us to achieve the meeting with the council officials .

We left with him a complete set of up to date park greens complaints schedules and evening news articles and await his efforts

We thank him for his time in listening to us and endeavouring to get this meeting sorted asap.

kind regards

Kevan Latham ( Bolton park greens action group)


28/6/16 - Email from Kevan Lathom to Councillor John Walsh

Hello John

As you are too well aware of the difficulty in getting the Parks management to meet with us re the above -- I have managed to get an appointment  to see Mr David Crausby  MP on Friday 1st July @ 3pm at one stop in the Town Hall - Bolton, to discuss getting some action from the Parks management for the parks greens.

I have already sent Mr Crausby all the links to the emails and complaints regarding this matter - so he is well aware of the problems we will be discussing.

If you or other club secretaries wish to come down to add weight to the meeting then you can contact me and we could arrange to meet at say 2.40 pm  prior to us seeing Mr Crausby at 3pm.

By the way - it looks like the feature article in the Bolton News will be on Wednesday of this week (29 June)

Kind regards

Kevan Latham 

17/6/16 - Email from Kevan Lathom

Hi everyone on my distribution list

There will be a feature article in the Bolton news next week regarding the state of our Parks bowling greens and our efforts to meet with the parks management officials in order to get our parks greens in a decent condition.

Information for the article has been given to the Bolton News already and to complement the article there will be a photo -shoot by Bolton News next Tuesday 21st June at Astley Bridge bowling green between 1 and 1.30 pm.

Astley bridge 'B' has a home match that day - so if any of you are match-free and wish to come down for the photo then you will be most welcome.

I will keep you posted re the Bolton news article and date of the meeting with parks management.

Kind regards

Kevan Latham

16/6/16 - Email from Kevan Lathom

Hi everyone on my distribution list.

I am still pressing for a meeting with the Parks management via councillor John Walsh

Will keep you posted when we finally get a meeting set-up.

Copy email attached:

Hello John

Just a reminder re the imminent meeting we will be having with the council parks management.

In order to ensure that the meeting has some substance re:complaints

I think it would be a good idea to point the council management in the direction of the complaints on the bowling web site

Also it would be in everyone's interest if the council came with information relating to:

1) Outstanding complaints made to the council representatives which have been made over these many months/years

2) The detailed maintenance schedule for all the council bowling greens for the Autumn 2015 green closures

3) The detailed maintenance schedule for all the council bowling greens for the spring 2016 start-up.

4) The proposed maintenance work to get  the bowling greens in a 'fit for purpose ' condition - to prevent further deterioration.

looking forward to hearing from you

kind regards

Kevan Latham


14/6/16 - Email from Kevan Lathom

Hello everyone on my distribution list

I am back from holiday and will let you know soon of our meeting time this week with the council Parks management re: Parks Bowling Greens.

In preparation of this meeting could all Parks greens bowling team secretaries let me know if any work on their greens was done in the Autumn of 2015 (last year).

Although the general opinion is that nothing was done --it is important that we get individual comments because I have an email saying work was done on all greens -- it was in the schedule that I sent to everyone --- an extract of it is reprinted below.

From: Russell, Malcolm
Sent: 29 April 2016 09:57
To: Peel, Nicholas (Councillor)
Subject: RE: State of Council Owned Bowling Greens

Dear Councillor Peel,

I can advise that all greens maintained by the Council received autumn renovation works in 2015 similar to recent years. This work includes

moss treatment, fertiliser treatment and air injection compaction relief (as an alternative to shallow verti-draining).

Please reply before Thursday if poss.

kind regards

Kevan Latham.


31/5/16 - Email from Kevan Lathom

Hi everyone on my distribution list.

The proposed meeting to discuss the problems with our greens and to get some action has been put back because

Malcolm Russell  (Head of Service (Neighbourhood Services) Bolton Council ) is on holiday this week.

and unfortunately I am on holiday next week.

This may seem like a small set-back but having had a chat with councillor John Walsh it has been decided that we don't want to discuss the matter with anyone less than head of services as we considered that it was best to have a full productive meeting during the week commencing 13th June .

I will let everyone know exactly when, as soon as it is arranged then they can be at the meeting if they want.

Thank you for the comments and further information - it has built up very convincingly in support of our cause.

I will keep adding information if you send it to me.

A lot of positive things have happened already with this campaign to get our greens put right.

We have demonstrated that all the park clubs have been ignored or given short shrift .

We have been able to get together and share our problems and act as one voice which cannot be fobbed off or ignored anymore - because we are united in our joint effort.

We have a good councillor in John Walsh who is fully behind us and knows his way around the council circuit.

I am determined to get what it needs to make our park greens the enjoyable sport for everyone to enjoy.

When I know -  I will let you all know when the meeting is.

Until then keep well

Kind regards

Kevan Latham (bolton park green action group)



26/5/16 - Email from Kevan Lathom

Hi to everyone on my distribution list.

The meeting today (26/5/16) at Astley Bridge bowling club with Councillor Walsh and representative bowlers went well.

In principle he agrees with our grievances, and will push our case with the parks dept. - to get our greens in better shape than they are.

In addition he made the comment that in the long term, in his opinion, he feels that the parks dept will want to off-load the green maintenance to individual clubs - so we all need to think about this at the end of the season - if we want to try and make it work for us.

As for getting the greens in better shape now, Mr Walsh is trying to arrange a meeting with the parks dept and the park club representatives this coming Wednesday 1st June at Astley bridge bowling club - and will be chaired by Councillor Walsh.

I will let you know for certain as soon as that meeting has been confirmed.

Thank you all for your contributions by sending in emails and phone calls and your support.

I have made a schedule of all your comments for each Park green/club and this has been handed to Mr Walsh already ---for his late night reading.

I will continue with this schedule update as comments and emails come in.

Until I get confirmation of the meeting date

Kind regards

Kevan Latham (Bolton park green action group)



The Secretary has been informed that discussions have taken place with council officials with regards to the state of the greens. The latest update is that due to the mild wet winter, many greens are troubled with moss. To treat this at this stage would mean moss killer followed by scarifying, and many weeks of green closure. This is not desirable at present and it is suggested we need to hope for better weather and that the greens dry out and we make the most of it.

Gordon Firth, Chairman of the Bolton Parks Veterans Amateur Bowling Association, has said today (14/4/16) that he will contact Julie Grundy with a view to getting drainage of some greens checked out as blocked drains is likely to be exacerbating the situation at affected greens. 

Julie Grundy's response was that the people who rod the drains have other priorities. However, the two worst greens effected by drainage problems had been visited.

Following the article in the Bolton News on the state of the parks greens, Councillor Susan Haworth (Harper Green Ward) has said she will be taking matters forward on behalf of her constituents living in the Ward.

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Hello Clive. We are having a committee meeting next Tuesday morning (Feb 7) and our annual pre-season meeting a week later (Feb 14). Do you know any more details about the costs and additional responsibilities we face this year? When does the relevant council committee meet? Will there be an opportunity for further input from the bowling forum before that? It strikes me that the council should not be suggesting that clubs should carry out their own fertiliser operations.  Surely that should be covered by the massive hike in the cost of bowling “permits”. Alan Calvert, secretary, Longsight Bowling Club, Harwood.

(Monday 06 November 2017)

Merits Competitions - 2017 Results

The 'A' and 'B' Section Merits Competitions were played at Darbishire Park on Friday, 15th September following a wash out the previous Monday. The weather was wonderful and matched the standard of bowling. We had 25 entrants in the 'A' Section and 21 in the 'B' Section. The full draw and individual results can be found by clicking the relevant section - Section 'A' or Section 'B'.

The Final of the 'A' Section was played between John Hilton and Kevan Grundy. Unfortunately this was a one-sided match with Kevan running out 15 - 2 with a run of winning 14 consecutive chalks. John had peaked in the semi-final when he beat Kevan Lathom to 13. The other semi-final won by Kevan Grundy was against Michael Bailey who lost to 11. 

In the Final of the 'B' Section the match was completely different with at first a neck and neck game initially between Tommy Harrington and Janet Gleave - in a re-match of the 2015 final. From about 8 across Tommy put in a 6 chalk break to be lying up, Janet then played a wonderful wood in front of the Club House to take the block back. Janet then played into the far corner and at first Tommy could not reach. Within minutes we were 14 across and Janet was playing for game which she duely won. The two loosing semi-finalists were Keith Townsend who lost to 14 against Janet and Sonia Forrest who lost to Tommy to 5.

Well done to all the bowlers. The finalists are pictured below - from left to right Tommy Harrington, Janet Gleave, Kevan Grundy and John Hilton (unfortunately the 'B' Section Trophies were not available for the presentation on the day).

The Chairman and Secretary, in presenting the trophies thanked the Darbishire Park Committee and helpers for supporting the day.


(Monday 11 September 2017)

Secretaries Trophy 2017

Secretaries Trophy:

This Competition will be held on Monday, 7th August at Horwich PH green.

The following payers are requested to attend for an 11:30 start and scratch out.

Ken Lord, Denver Smith, Angela Cook, Clive Fenn, Eddie Thompson, Keith Andrews, Mike Jennings, Alan Douglas, Ray Forrest, David Grundy, Alan Hamer, Kevan Grundy, Bob Williams, Eddie Goodwin, Eric Smith, Neil Meacham, David Dixon, Trevor Warburton, Alan Calvert, Sonia Forest, Brenda Ainsworth and Marlene Hurst.


(Thursday 03 August 2017)

League Team Championship Finals

Congratulations to Moss Bank Park 'B' team for winning the Final of the Association's Harold Orrell Cup which was played on 4th September 2pm at Longsight. In a close fought competition Moss Bank Park 'B' came out on top beating Darbishire Park 'A' with a score of 207 to 196. Commisurations to Darbishire Park 'A' - the result was only decided in the last match.

Pictured below is the victorious Moss Bank 'B' team - all smiles please.


Congratulations are also due to Merehall who won the Final of the Norman Little Memorial Trophy at Longsight on 5th September. In the final, Merehall Park overcame Egerton Park 'C' in the last two games winning by 200 v 192. Unlucky to Egerton Park 'C' with another very close match.

To view the team's way to the Championship of the Harold Orrell Cup and Norman Little Memorial Trophy click the competition name.

Below are pictures of the fianlists of the Norman Little Memorial Trophy.

Merehall Park - Norman Little Memorial Trophy Winners 2017

The winning team - Merehall Park - winners of the Norman Little Memorial Trophy 2017

Egerton Park C - losing finalists in the Norman Little Memorial Trophy 2017

The runners-up - Egerton Park 'C' - of the Norman Little Memorial Trophy 2017

(Thursday 27 July 2017)

BetFred Green Allocations for Preliminaries on 10th July 2017

The preliminaries of the BetFred Trophy showing green allocation of bowlers can be found here.

(Tuesday 04 July 2017)

Mixed Pairs Competition - 12th June

Finals Day - Great Lever Park - 12th June - 11:15

The preliminaries of the Mixed Pairs were to be played at Moss Bank on 5th June. Due to bad weather only 36 of the 56 bowlers were in attendance. As a consequence, the majority of those not present were scratched. Play was not possible and so the draw for pairings was made. With the reduced numbers taking part it was decided to play the three preliminary matches on the Finals Day with an earlier scratch out time of 11:15.

The draw was then completed on the website using the 'randomise' function. The draw can be found here. All bowlers in the draw are asked to attend Great Lever Park on 12th June. The scratch out time is 11:15am. 

Bet Fred Mixed Pairs: The qualifying round of the competition will be played on Monday, 5th June (weather permitting – otherwise Friday 12th June.) The following players should report to Moss Bank Park (bottom green) for a 12:30pm start and scratch-out. Should any players be balloted out, they will be guaranteed a place in the competition next year.

 Ladies: Brenda Fenn, Sonia Forrest, Jean Naughton, Mary Southern Frances Knight, Margaret Barton, Norma Williams and Lynda Brooks (Moss Bank Park); Avril Williams (Longsight); Janet Gleave, Anne Turner, Jackie Royal (Westhoughton); Angela Cook and Cath Cartridge (Egerton Park); Pam Jennings and Eileen Hill (Horwich PH); Joyce Brierley, Joan Aldred, Brenda Ainsworth, Maureen Woods and Jean Perry (Queens Park); Brenda Ratcliffe (Tonge); Rosalin Wilcock (Astley Bridge); Julie Pollitt and Margaret Hulme (Great Lever)

 Men: Joe Hodgkinson, George Manning, Eric Smith, Ray Ankers, R.Perry, Michael Bailey, John Cranshaw, Philip Doel and Derek Loheide (Tonge); Clive Fenn, Malcolm Cummings and Charlie Dixon (Great Lever); Kevan Grundy, Les Fishwick and Bob Williams (Longsight); Neal Meacham and Doug Turner (Westhoughton); Kevin Breen, John Forrest, Gordon Radcliffe and Peter Hardman (Egerton Park); Ray Forrest and Frank Morton (Moss Bank Park); Charlie Cowsill (Horwich); Kevan Latham, John Mort and David Barton (Astley Bridge|) and Dave Beresford (Haslam Park)


(Friday 02 June 2017)

Ken Barker passes away

It is with sad regret that we have to announce the death of Ken Barker on Monday (22nd May). Ken was most recently the Association's Vice President until the January 2017 ASM when he stood down. Before that Ken had been the Results Secretary for a number of years and was was known well by many Veterans Team Secretaries.

The funeral arrangements are as follows:- Thursday, 1st June 2017 at 10 am, at St Maxentius Church, (Bradshaw Parish Church), followed by committal at Overdale Crematorium at 11-30am.

Family flowers only.  Donations if desired to Lewy Body Society, Hudson House, 8 Albany Street, Edinburgh, EH1 3QB.  (Lewy Body Disease is a muscle wasting disease which can accompany Parkinsons and Alzeihmers diseases).

Our thoughts are with Ken's family.

(Saturday 27 May 2017)

Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition Finals - 2017


Sponsored by BETFRED

Fraser-Huyton Pairs: The final for the competition will be played on Monday15th May (weather permitting – otherwise Friday 19th May). The following players should report to Egerton Park for a 12:30pm start and scratch-out:

D.Coupe & R.Cook (Darbishire ‘B’); B.Lawton & Kevan Grundy (Longsight ‘A’); Steve & Fran Taylor (Great Lever ‘A’); R.Perry & R.Hall (Tonge ‘A’); Rob Porter & R.Cummings (Great Lever ‘A’); Chris Barnes and Jim McGuiness (Moss Bank ‘A’ & ‘B’); Ray Forrest & John Wolfendale (Moss Bank ‘A’ & Haslam Park); Joe Hodgkinson & Eric Smith (Tonge ‘B’); D.Dixon & Walt Callow (Great Lever ‘B’); Frank Morton & Dave Beresford (Moss Bank ‘A’ & Haslam Park); J.Vickers & G.Lockton (Astley Bridge ‘A’); Ken Shaw & Ron Brookes (Moss Bank ‘A’); George Manning & W.Morris (Tonge ‘B’ & Darbishire ‘A’); Mike Howard & Les Fishwick (Longsight ‘A’); John Mort & G.Butler (Astley Bridge ‘A’) and C.Cowsill & R.Sale (Horwich ‘A’).




(Wednesday 10 May 2017)

Report on Annual Secretaries Meeting - 12th January 2017

The ASM was held on 12th January 2017 at the Railway. Papers had been circulated to clubs but can be accessed below.


ASM Minutes - 21st January 2016

Secretary's Report

Annual Accounts / Balance Sheet 2016

Secretaries voted to increase the Annual Team Subscription from £10 to £15 and agreed Honoraria to be paid in 2017.

Team Fees / Honoraria

The proposed rule changes for Rule 2.1.9 were passed. Up to date Association Rules can be found on the website.

It was agreed at the ASM that from next year we planned to hold an AGM with all members invited but that each Team would only be allowed one vote along with Executive Members. This is a List of Officers and Committee Members

Minutes of Secretaries Meeting held on 22nd September.

Team Secretaries were asked to note that fixtures for 2017 are confirmed and available on the website. Cup draws and handicaps for the Harold Orrell Cup and Norman Little Memorial Trophies were also agreed and confirmed at the meeting.

Following discussion it was agreed that the Finals Day of Associations Singles and Pairs Cup Competitions would all start at 11:30 in 2017.

The ‘Champions’ versus ‘The Rest’ from the 2016 season has been scheduled for 27th April at Westhoughton and will be a charity fund raiser. Clubs are asked to donate raffle prizes with proceeds going to our chosen charity. The Executive Committee proposed that we support Bolton Hospice in 2017 - this was approved at the ASM.

Association Competitions in 2017

If your Club is hosting a competition on specific date(s), please advise your Club Committee so that arrangements can be made to host the competition – please remember the reserve dates too.

Proposed dates for 2017 below

Secretaries Meeting – 9th March 2017 – at The Railway at 13:30

Secretaries Meeting – 21st September 2017 – at The Railway at 13:30

Presentation - 8th November 2017 – at The Railway at 14:00

AGM - 25th January 2018 – at The Railway at 13:30 

Draft minutes of the ASM held on 12th January 2017 can be found here.

(Friday 23 December 2016)

GI Wilson attended our Presentation

Graeme Wilson (GI Wilson) attended our Presentation on Wednesday, 9th November at the Railway. Graeme presented prizes and talked for some 15 minutes on his experiences on the green. Graeme then answered numerous questions in a question and answer session. A very enjoyable afternoon was had by all. Thank you Graeme.


(Saturday 29 October 2016)

Gordon Firth

It is with regret and sadness, I have to post the death of Gordon Firth. Gordon died at 7.30am on Sunday, 8th January at Bolton Hospice. Our thoughts are with Gordon's partner Valerie and his family.

In an email from Terry Davies received this morning, Terry gave the following details

" Funeral arrangements for Gordon will be as follows :-

Thursday 19th January at 12 noon at Overdale Crematorium.

Gordon wanted it to be a quiet gathering with nothing to follow and I'm sure we would all wish to respect his wishes.

The cortège will leave Val and Gordon's home In King Street at 11.30am and any donations will go to the Bolton Hospice."

I am sure there will be a large turnout from Members of the BPVABA as Gordon was our Immediate Past President and Chairman until his resignation in the Autumn on ill-health. Gordon had been the Association's Secretary for some 10 years prior to me taking on the role. Gordon will be sadly missed.

Rest in Peace Gordon.

Clive Fenn

Secretary, BPVABA

(Saturday 29 October 2016)

184 Not Out

Is there many sports where the two contestants combined ages can reach 184 years? I doubt it but this was achieved in one of league matches during the season. The match was between Westhoughton B and Longsight C in the B Section of the Bolton Parks Veterans Amateur Bowling Association on 23rd August. The two contestants were Cliff Grundy at 93 and the younger Eddie Bennett at a mere 91 years young. On this occassion the youngster came out on top winning 15 - 11. For the full match result please click here.

A photograph (courtesy of Tom Lowe at the suggestion of Peter Turner) of the two young (at heart) men is shown below with Cliff Grundy (93) on the left and Eddie Bennett (91) on the right alt 

(Sunday 16 October 2016)

Merits Competition - 2016

The Association Merits Competitions were held on Moss Bank Park on 7th September. All bar three of the Association's teams sent representatives to play in the re-arranged competition - the change in date being attributed to the early closure of the Bolton Parks greens this year for early autumn maintenance. After a slightly dull start to the day the sun came out and shone on us and brought the best out from many of our bowlers as we were blessed with some extremely good bowling.

The draw and match results for the 'A' Section Merit Trophy can be found here and the 'B' Section Merit Trophy here.

The 'A' Section Merit Trophy was won by Michael Bailey from Tonge Park 'A' who beat Fran Tayor (Great Lever 'A') and the 'B' Section Merit Trophy was won by Christine Dew of Westhoughton 'C' who beat Howard Crook (Longsight 'C'). This was the second year running that a lady from Westhoughton 'C' has won this trophy. 

The photograph shows the finalists of both competitions holding their trophies from left to right the 'B' Section Merit Trophy Runner-up Howard Crook (Longsight C), the 'B' Section Merit Trophy Champion Christine Dew (Westhoughton C), next to Fran Taylor (Great Lever Park A) runner-up in the 'A' Merit Competion and Michael Bailey (Tonge Park A) Champion of the 'A' Section Merit Competition. Congratulations to you all.


Thanks were expressed to all who attended and especially to those who stayed to the end and watched the finals; to the measurers and scorers for their deligence; Arnold Pollitt for suggesting all loosing bowlers mark a match on completing their game (this made marking easy and will in future be adopted in all our competitions in the future); to the ladies who sold raffle tickets and raised £136.50 for Bolton Hospice; to Gordon Firth our President and Chairman for presenting the trophies; to all at Moss Bank Park for making us all welcome and providing drinks all day and finally to our sponsors Betfred for their sponsorship. 

(Thursday 08 September 2016)

Cup Finals - 2016

The 'A' Section Cup final was competed between Horwich Public Hall 'B' and Tonge Park 'A' on Longsight on 5th September. In a one sided competition Tonge Park 'A' over came the Horwich PH 'B' team by 171 to 138 chalks. The match card shows that Tonge had 7 out of the first 8 games with strong performances from players in both teams with good wins from Ray Perry and Michael Bailey in the Tonge Park team and Norman Taylor (acting Captain) in the Horwich PH team. Christine Tate despite being defeated to 12 by Alan Parker (Captain) of the Tonge team played extremely well.

Thank you to Longsight Bowling Club for offering their facilities and hosting the Cup Finals - ladies - the cake and scones were delicious. I wonder wheter we will get cakes at the Merits tomorrow at Moss Bank?

The photographs show the two competing teams.alt

Tonge Park A - with Alan Parker (Captain) holding the 'A' Section Harold Orrell Cup with his team and reserves.


Horwich Public Hall 'B' - Runners-up in the Harold Orrell Cup Final.

The 'B' Section Cup Final was played at Longsight on 6th September. The final was between Great Lever Park 'B' and Tonge Park 'B', you could say it was a purple day as both Club's colour is purple. Despite the purple, going was heavy as the green had not been cut since last week but no one struggled to reach the corners. With four winners coming off in the first four for the Tonge team, the writing appeared to be on the wall for Great Lever. However, with six of Great Lever's strongest bowlers in the last eight and a 20 chalk handicap over Tonge a change in fortunes was on the cards. Unfortunately for Great Lever this was not the case as Ann Norris (Tonge) out played David Dixon winning 15 to 4. Other Great Lever bowlers struggled and Tonge ran out winners with 171 chalks to Great Lever's 134. The picture below shows the victorious Tonge Park B squad with Joe Hodkinson kneeling with the trophy.alt


The proud but defeated Great Lever Team is shown below, perhaps next year you will clinch the title again after all Great Lever had won the trophy only two years before.



(Tuesday 06 September 2016)

Change in Dates and Venues of Competitions in September

Due to the early closure of parks greens on 9th September. It has been necessary to re-arrange a number of the Association's Competitions. At a recent Executive Committee meeting called to discuss this matter the following was decided.

It was agreed that the ‘A’ Section Cup Final (The Harold Orrell Cup) would be played on 5th September and the ‘B’ Section Cup Final (The Norman Little Memorial Trophy) on 6thSeptember as currently scheduled. The venue for both competitions would be Longsight. The start time would be 2pm with the draw completed shortly after 1pm as per Association rules.

It was decided that the Merits Competitions would now have to be played on Wednesday, 7th September (with the reserve date of Friday, 9th September) on Moss Bank Park starting at 12:00. As a consequence, the Secretary would have to seek entries from Team Secretaries for the Merits possibly before all league fixtures have been completed. It was thought this should not be too difficult as the website should show those who qualify - Team Secretaries would only need to notify the Association's Secretary should either of the top two players in the averages who qualify to play in the Merits are unavailable and are being substituted. 

It was agreed that for this year the ‘Champions v The Rest’ which was due to be played on 27th September should be cancelled in 2016. It was discussed that this could possibly be played as an opener and charity fund raiser at the start of the 2017 season. Proposals would be suggested at the next Team Secretaries meeting scheduled for 22nd September at the Railway at 13:30.

(Thursday 11 August 2016)

Secretaries Trophy - 2016

8th August

The fianl winner in the Secretaries Trophy was Keith Andrews from Horwich Public Hall 'A' who beat the 'B' Section winner Ron Spedding of Great Lever 'B' 15 to 12. In scoring 12 Ron was one short of equaling the chalks scored against Keith in all rounds of the 'A' Section Trophy. The 'A' Section draw and results can be found here and the 'B' Section draw and results here.   


The photograph shows Keith Andrews ('A' Section Secretaries Trophy Winner) with Ron Spedding ('B' Section Secretaries Winner) in the play-off Keith beat Ron 15 - 12.  

The entries to date for the Secretaries Trophy which is to be played at Sunnyside on 8th August are in the 'A' Section

Ken Lord (Astley Bridge B), Denver Smith and Arnold Pollitt (Darbishire Park A), Clive Fenn (Great Lever A), Eddie Thompson (Haslam Park), Keith Andrews (Horwich PH A), Bob Williams and Kevan Grundy (Longsight A) Alan Douglas and Mike Coombes (Longsight B), David Grundy and Alan Hamer (Moss Bank A) and Neil Meacham and Jim Hodkinson (Westhoughton A)

and in the 'B' Section

Norman Burke (Breightmet), Terry Coyne (Darbishire Park B), Walt Callow and Ron Spedding (Great Lever B), Alan Calvert (Longsight C) and John Preston and Keith Clarkson (Queens Park)

Additional entries from Team Secretaries, Team Captains and the League's Executive Committee will be allowed on the day - just turn up before 12:00 the start and scratch-out time.


(Wednesday 03 August 2016)

Betfred Trophy Competition 2016

22nd July 2016 - Finals day

On a dry sunny day at Great Lever Park, the Betfred Trophy got off to a brisk start with all qualifiers in attendance. In the draw were five 'B' Division bowlers; their opponents had to take a 3 chalks penalty. Similarly the five homesters had to give a 1 chalk penalty. There was some excellent bowling and alot of tight matches were played. By the end of the quarter finals all the 'B' Division bowlers and homesters had been eliminated. In the first semi-final Mick Hilton (Longsight A) was beaten by John Wolfendale (Haslam Park), who was on fire winning 15 - 8. In the second semi, in a neck and neck contest Kevin Breen (Egerton Park A) came from behind to put two woods near to the block on the last end to beat Jimmy Vickers (Astley Bridge A) to 14. This lead to a final between John Wolfendale and Kevin Breen. John played very well and was never behind until the penultimate end when his quality bowling failed him and Kevin came in to take the end. Kevin then bowled from the corner to the clubhouse and played a length ball. John's first bowl was 2 yards short, Kevin played a second length bowl and lying up. To his horror, John bowled his second wood short and Kevin took the trophy. Congratulation to Kevin and all of the participants.

In making the presentation, Clive Fenn offered thanks to the Great Lever Committee for hosting the event in their usually efficient manner and to all for their attendance. The photograph shows Clive (centre) presenting the Betfred Trophy to Kevin Breen with John Wolfendale with his Runners-up Trophy on the left. Final Day match scores can be found here.

Betfred Trophy Finalists -- 22/7/16

18/7/16 - Betfred Qualifiers

Longsight Preliminary - K. Breen and G. Ratcliffe (Egerton Park A),  D. Barton (Astley Bridge A) and W. Callow (Great Lever B) 

Egerton Park Preliminary - P. Sharples (Longsight C), A. Todd (Queens Park A), R. Williams (Longsight A) and M. Cummings (Great Lever A)

Breightmet Park Preliminary - J. Vickers (Astley Bridge A), J. Hilton (Darbishire Park A), R. Ames (Great Lever B) and R. Forrest (Moss Bank A)

Horwich Public Hall Preliminary - J. Wolfendale (Haslam Park), M. Hilton (Longsight A), D. Dixon (Great Lever B) and C. Fenn (Great Lever A)

Finals Day Great Lever Park - Friday, 22nd July 12:00 for 12:30 scratch and start.

15/7/16 - Betfred Trophy - the preliminary at Horwich PH was postponed today (Friday, 15th July). Play at the three other greens continued down to the last four. The preliminary at Horwich PH will now be played on Monday (18th July) at 12:30. As a consequence, the Finals Day will have to be put back to the reserve date of Friday, 22nd July at Great Lever Park again 12:30 start.

11/7/16 - All preliminaries were called off today due to the weather and greens being too wet and unsafe to play. As a consequence, the reserve date this Friday (15th July) will be used. In view of the fact that all preliminaries were postponed, all entrants registered to play today will be automatically entered to play on Friday. We are allowing some leniency to those who did not turn up to Longsight which was eventually called off at 12:30 by all present. If wet on Friday please check the website for any notices before travelling.  

The green allocations for the Betfred Trophy Preliminaries to be held on 11th July (reserve date 15th July) has now been made.  Bowlers are asked to report to the allocated green. The start and scratch out time is 12:30. The draw will be made at 12:30 at each green. For green allocation click here.

The finals will be held at Great Lever Park on 18th July (or reserve date 22nd) with scratch out and start time of 12:30.


(Sunday 03 July 2016)

Bowl played out of turn

We have had a number of instances when opponents have not allowed a bowler to resend a bowl after it was originally played out of turn. Rule 5.12 of the BCGBA states that "If a player delivers a bowl out of turn it must be returned to be played in its proper turn". This means should a player send their bowl inadvertently after setting a mark following the original block being sent off by their opponent - that player gets their bowl back.

Rule 5.13 covers the instance when a bowler delivers their opponent's bowl. In this instance the offending player forfeits their bowl and the bowl is returned to their opponent. The wording of the rule is "If a player, in turn, delivers a bowl of another player, it shall be returned to the proper owner to be played, the offender forfeiting a bowl." This means the bowl sent incorrectly is not replaced by the correct bowl - it is lost and removed from the end.

Please make sure you read the rules. The rules are printed in the Lancashire and BCGBA Official Handbooks. Your Club should have new copies of these handbooks annually.

(Wednesday 01 June 2016)

The Bet Fred Mixed Pairs Competition - 2016


Sponsored by BETFRED

Following a wash out on the original scheduled day for the Finals of the Mixed Pairs Competition, the finals were held on the reserve date of 17th June. All bowlers gathered in moderate sunshine and dry weather. A few substitutions were forced upon us due to holidays or other appointments but this did not effect play which was of an excellent standard all day with some very close and hard fought matches. After two rounds the four semi-finalist pairings were Barbara Holden (Moss Bank C) partnered by Barry Howarth (Astley Bridge A); Sonia Forrest (Moss Bank C) and Clive Fenn (Great Lever A); Norma Williams (Moss Bank C)and Kevan Grundy (Longsight A) and Jan Gleave (Westhoughton C) partnered by Ray Forrest (Moss Bank A). In the first of the two semi-finals Barbara and Barry surcomed to some excellent bowling by Sonia and Clive. In a closer fought battle in the second semi Jan and Ray out played Kevan and Norma. Leading to a final between the two Forrests and their bowling partners. On this occassion Sonia and Clive could not sustain their level of bowling in earlier rounds and Jan and Ray ran out champions 15 - 5. Full results can be found here).

Well done to all contestants in what turned out to be an excellent day and thank you to Haslam Park in particular Gerald for hosting the competition.

The picture shows from left to right Ray Forrest, Jan Gleave, Sonia Forrest and Clive Fenn.


Mixed Pairs Competition: The final of the competition will be played on Monday 13th June (weather permitting, otherwise Friday 17th June). The following pairs should attend at Haslam Park for a 11:30 start and scratch-out.

The draw for the second round is B Holden & B. Howarth; B Ratcliffe & Syd Escort; Angela Cook & Eric Smith; Lynn Chesters & Chris Dalby; Ann Walker & George Manning; Brenda Fenn & Norman Shard; Leslie Hope & M Jennings; Sonia Forrest & Clive Fenn; B Entwistle & Tom Chesters; N Williams & Kevan Grundy; Helen Brady & Peter Roberts; Elaine Sweeney & Neil Meachem; Jan Gleave & R Forest; Jean Naughton & Bob Williams; Cath Cartridge & Jim Entwistle; and Joan Taylor & Denver Smith

The full draw and results can be found on the Association’s web site by clicking here.

The Association would like to express their thanks to the Committee and Officers of Darbishire Park for hosting the first round of the competition on 6th June.





Bet Fred Mixed Pairs: The qualifying round of the competition will be played on Monday, 6th June (weather permitting – otherwise Friday 10th June). The finals are due to be played a week later on 13th June (weather permitting).

Could the following players report to Darbishire Park for a 12:30pm start and scratch-out? The draw of pairings and position in the draw will be made at the green and any player balloted out will be granted automatic entry to the 2017 competition. Apologies are offered to those entrants who may get balloted out on the day. Currently we are seven ladies short any additional ladies wishing to play can just turn up on the day.

Ladies: Brenda Kay & Avril Williams (Longsight Park); Barbara Entwistle, Ann Turner, Sally Condon & Jakie Royle (Westhaughton); Barbara Ratcliffe (Tonge Park); Margaret Turtington (Darbishire Park); P V Jennings & Leslie Hope (Horwich); Brenda Fenn, S Forrest, N Williams, D Collier, J Naughton, B Holden, M Rishton, A Shard, M Southern, F Knight & H Brady (Moss Bank Park); Ann Walker, Catherine Cartridge, Maureen Woods, Veronica Wood & Angela Cook (Egerton Park) and Joan Taylor, Agnes Briggs, Sue Smith, Elaine Sweeney & Lynn Chesters (Darbishire Park).

Gentlemen: Les Fishwick, Kevan Grundy, Bob Williams, Peter Sharples & Alan Simpson (Longsight Park); Clive Fenn (Great Lever Park); B. Howarth & D Barton (Astley Bridge); M Jennings, T Hope & C Cowsill (Horwich); Norman Shard, R Forest & D Grundy (Moss Bank Park); Kevin Breen, Peter Hardman, John Forrest & Gordon Ratcliffe (Egerton Park); Peter Roberts, Denis Briggs, Ted Nicholson, Tom Chesters, John Hilton & Syd Escort (Darbishire Park); Doug Turner, Neil Meachem, Jim Entwistle, Chris Dalby & Terry Davies (Westhoughton) and George Manning, Ray Ankers, Ray Perry, Joe Hodkinson, Brian Boyes, Eric Smith, Dave Morrall, Terry Ratcliffe, Dereck Loheide & John Cranshaw (Tonge Park).


(Sunday 29 May 2016)

Endsleigh Insurance

The Endsleigh Insurance On-line Application is now operational - click here to access.

(Sunday 29 May 2016)

Cup Match Results

A new functionality of the website has been implemented with the Direct Entry of Cup Match Results - click for more details

(Sunday 29 May 2016)

Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition - 2016

Finals Day

We had an interesting days play - on what was thought would have been a nice day at Tonge Park but turned out to be quite chilly.

May we offer the Associations thanks to Tonge Park for hosting the finals day of the Fraser Huyton Pairs Competition. We must also thank the ladies in the kitchen - the cakes were wonderful. Thanks also to all Officials, markers and peggers.

The match play was exciting with a number of pairings coming from way back to win - other pairings didn't get a look in so we had a mixture of extremely long games and some very short ones.

The loosing semi-finalists were Mike Bailey (Tonge Park) partnered with John Hilton (Darbishire Park) and Howard Boyd and Martin Walton both from Egerton Park. Leaving the final to be contested between Alan Parker (Tonge Park) with Mick Hilton (Longsight Park) and the pairing from Longsight Park of Mick Howard and Les Fishwick. Mick and Les got off to a good start to then be caught up by the local Alan and Mick. The middle portion of the match was nip and tuck until the scores were 10 across. Then Mick and Les put in good leads to run out winners 15 - 10. 

Full match results can be found here.

The photograph  shows The Champions, Mick Howard and Les Fishwick on the left of Clive Fenn (centre) and Runners up Mick Hilton and Alan Parker on the rightalt


Astley Bridge   Queens Park
Officials: Alan Hamer & Barbara Holden   Official: Alan Douglas
Howard Boyd  Martin Walton Egerton    Kevin Breen  Peter Hardman Egerton 
J Hodkinson E Smith    Tonge   R Perry R Hall Tonge
Leslie Hope  Pam Jennings Horwich   A Parker M Hilton    Tonge / Longsight
M Bailey J Hilton    Tonge / Darbishire   C Leonard H Moore Longsight
Heywood Park   Merehall
Official: Arnold Pollitt   Official: Alan Cook
T Glover M Gregson Sunnyside   T Harrington W Hamer Sunnyside
M Howard Les Fishwick Longsight   Gordon Ratcliffe  Roy Brierley Egerton 
Malcolm Austin Geoff Dunn Egerton    R Sale  C Cowcill Horwich
Clive Fenn Brenda Fenn Great Lever / Moss Bank   Dave Grundy Ronnie Brooks Moss Bank 

The photographs show some of the qualifiers at Astley Bridge and Heywood Park.



The green allocations for the Fraser - Huyton Preliminaries to be held on 9th May (reserve date 13th May) has now been made.  Bowlers are asked to report to the allocated green. The start and scratch out time is 12:30. The draw will be made at 12:30 at each green.

The finals will be held at Tonge Park on 16th May (or reserve date 20th) with scratch out and start time of 12:30.

(Tuesday 03 May 2016)