Newsletter – June 2020
Following the revised guidelines from the UK government about Covid-19 and the guidance notes from Bowls England we are pleased to announce that we feel able to introduce more bowling for our members. In particular we are –
- Allowing members to play games of pairs in the various roll-up sessions;
- Planning to start a pairs league on a Monday afternoon, starting on 6th July;
- Planning to organise our Open League as a pairs competition, starting on 14th July;
- Organising the majority of club competitions, with entries required by 1st July.
The bulk of this newsletter concentrates on these four areas.
The recent relaxation of government guidelines permit up to 6 people to play bowls together. The guidelines and Bowls England guidance notes concentrate on two main aspects – observing social distancing (2 metres apart) at all times – washing hands and regular cleaning of any surfaces or equipment likely to be touched by more than one person. Although the Bowls England guidance notes permit triples play, we are concerned that such games would make it more difficult to observe social distancing effectively. We are therefore restricting our play to singles or pairs.
Playing pairs introduces new elements of concern, particularly regarding the social distancing guidelines, so it is essential that all members continue to observe the following –
- The clubhouse main door and patio door must be open at all times during play. Anyone entering the clubhouse must use the main door and must exit using the patio door.
- The kitchen and bar will not be open. No refreshments will be served. Anyone requiring a drink must bring their own.
- The clubhouse can only be used for limited essential use – toilets and changing rooms. Only one person can use each toilet at any one time and only one person is allowed in the changing room, just to collect their bowls and shoes. The door to the changing room must be kept open.
- Sufficient plastic chairs will be laid out on the patio area and on the path in front of the green for players to sit and change their shoes. Players must not use a chair already used by another player.
- Spectators can be allowed, but they must also observe social distancing and use the benches situated around the green. Members from different households must not sit together on the same bench.
- Bottles of hand gel and disinfectant spray will be available on a table by the main entrance to the clubhouse. Members are expected to use the gel when they arrive, and spectators should be advised to spray a bench before they use it.
- All the equipment necessary for pairs game, i.e. 2 mats, jacks, pushers, 2-metre sticks – will be placed on each rink.
- The mats will be placed in a “fixed” position 4 metres from the ditch, making it easier for players to observe social distancing. The mats should not be moved except for minor adjustments.
- Two jacks will be provided on each rink. Each lead in a pairs game will be given a jack at the beginning of the game. The winning lead from the previous end bowls their jack at the beginning of the next end. The corresponding skip will centre the jack with their foot. At the end of a game the jacks should be placed in the bowl of disinfected water provided.
- A pusher will be placed at each end of every rink before the start of the game. At the beginning of the game the leads should agree – either that one lead will always use the pusher – or one lead will use the pusher at odd ends, and the other lead at the conclusion of even ends. The pushers should be wiped at the beginning of a new session.
- Where members wish to keep the score in a game, scorecards must be used with one skip recording the score. A supply of scorecards will be kept on the table inside the clubhouse. Scoreboards must not be used.
We are planning to start a Pairs League for club members on a Monday afternoon, starting on the 6th July. David Conway will be organising this league. If you would like to be included in a team please contact David, by 22nd June at the latest.
Gordon Greenfield is contacting leaders of the teams that have entered our Tuesday morning Open League in the past, with the intention that we will be organising an Open Pairs League competition on Tuesday mornings, starting on 14th July. If we receive sufficient entries the competition will also be played on Thursday mornings. As this will be a pairs competition, fewer members of a squad will be required, so if you would like to enter a team, or be included in a team, please get in touch with Gordon. This league is supported by at least 2 of our sponsors and there is prize money available for the top teams and for the winning team in every match.
We are hoping to arrange a number of club competitions, which will be open for all full-playing members to enter. An entry form is provided with this newsletter. If you intend to enter any competition, please complete the form and return it to Peter Speroni, our Competitions Secretary, by 1st July. The draws for the respective competitions will be made during the first week of July, with “play-by” dates set according to the number of entries for each competition.
Some competitions will be played on fixed dates, notably –
- The ladies’ and men’s 2-wood singles – on Saturday 18th July;
- The 2-wood mixed pairs – on Saturday 1st August;
- The Aussie pairs – on Saturday 22nd August.
Wherever possible we would ask members who are entering competitions to pay their entry fees by making an on-line payment directly to the club’s bank account. Details are on the entry from. This reduces the need for David to visit the bank, or for other members to handle cash. We will keep under review whether it will be possible to play the Bob Sawyer Trophy on the Bank Holiday Monday on 31st August and the format that might take.
We are now able to provide coaching for prospective members, but only by prior appointment. If you know anyone who would like to learn the game of bowls, please ask them to contact John Abson directly, or make an appropriate enquiry via our new web-site.
ASM have agreed that they will ensure the green is cut before 10am in the morning, so the club will be open for play from 10am every day with effect from 15th June. Members may now come to the club for informal games (roll-ups) at any time of the week, after 10am in the morning, except for Monday afternoons (between 2pm and 4pm) and Tuesday mornings (between 10am and 12 noon). These restrictions apply from the start dates of the Pairs and Open leagues respectively.
A senior member of the club will be responsible for opening the club each morning and they will lay out the green with the appropriate rink markers, mats and jacks. Similarly, a senior member of the club will lock-up the club each evening. Members can come to the club for informal play (roll-ups) at any time of the day except those required for the two leagues and there will be no need to make a booking with a designated steward. However, we would request that all members observe the following rules concerning the Covid-19 safeguards and the overall security of the club –
- A maximum of 4 players can play on any one rink, in a game of pairs;
- Please ensure that the gates to the electric fence are closed and the electricity turned on if you are the last member to use the green;
- Please close the clubhouse door and the door to the equipment shed;
- When leaving the club please place the combination padlock on the main gate to the club and scramble the combination.
Sadly, we have to report that June Cable, one of the club’s previous members for many years, passed away on Friday 5th June.
We plan to produce the next issue of the newsletter in mid-July, to include details of the various club competitions. If you have any item of news or comment that you would like to include, please let us know by 4th July. In the meantime, stay safe and healthy
… and please remember to observe the Government’s guidelines about social distancing (keep 2 metres apart from other members) at all times. Any member who thinks they may be suffering from any of the symptoms of Covid-19 should self-isolate and should not consider coming to the club under any circumstances whatsoever.