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Bowls History

A short history of Lambourn Bowls Club   

Lambourn Bowls Club was founded in 1928 by Dr K.Bell at Trabbs House, Goose Green and Dr Bell’s own lawn was used through 1929.

In November of that year a piece of ground at the Football Field , equivalent to three rinks, was offered by Mr Alf Bracey for £5 a year on a seven year lease. This offer was taken up and that year, 1929, Dr Bell put up a Singles Challenge Cup that is still being played for today.

During the Second World War, the bowls green continued to be used for friendly games, albeit a much limited number owing to the shortage of petrol.

During 1945, the green was enlarged to accommodate six rinks with the help of prisoner of war labour. It was found in later years that the measurements were not quite correct and the green was slightly enlarged to be in line with the rules.

In 1946 it was proposed that the Bowls Club became part of Lambourn Sports Club and be known as Lambourn Sports Club Bowls Section. The bowls section is now known as Lambourn Sports Bowls Club and is totally self funding.

In 1947 L.J. Bodman was the first Lambourn player to be selected to play for Berkshire and he continued to play for Berkshire for many years to come. Since then many fine bowlers from Lambourn have been selected to play for their County.

In 1953 The Ashley Baker League was formed and initially consisted of three teams; Lambourn, Kintbury and Stockcross. Lambourn won 7 of the 8 games played in the first year and, since those early days, has won the league many times. Membership of the league has fluctuated over the years from three up to eleven clubs.

In 1977 Lambourn joined The Kennet League which consisted of 8 clubs. This lasted until 1995, when a lack of players forced the retirement from the league. Lambourn also had a strong ladies section that played in The Ridgeway League and won many honours, but that too, ended in 1995 through, again, a lack of players.

October 1993 saw work starting on the new Pavilion, which was to replace the old caravan that had been given to the bowls club by local racehorse trainer Nick Vigors back in 1986. The caravan, in its turn, had replaced the old pavilion that had stood on the green since the early days. The new Pavilion cost £20,000  which was quite an amount, much of which was received in grants from various quarters. The pavilion was ceremoniously opened by Peter Walwyn in June 1994.  

In 2003 a new green was laid. After being stripped of its turf, rotavated, laser levelled and reseeded it was allowed to settle until The Green Open Day dawned in July 2004. Top officials from The Royal County of Berkshire Bowling Association officially opened the green and played alongside invited players from clubs around the area against the members of Lambourn Sports Bowls Club.

The match was a huge success and the green has bowled beautifully ever since. All thanks to Avon Sports Maintenance Company that did the work and continue to maintain the green under contract.

In 2005 Lambourn rejoined the Kennet League and succeeded in winning Division 3 at the first attempt, which was a magnificent achievement.

For the first time in its history, Lambourn hosted a full County game in June 2005, when Berkshire played Warwickshire and won. We The new green bowled well and has put us on the map for hosting these prestigious matches each year.

Progress in the Kennet League continued in 2006 with promotion to Devision Two - swifly followed by promotion to Division One in 2007. During the last few years several Lambourn players has gained their County badges and competed at a National level.

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