Howard Park Bowls Club
Members Information sheet
Welcome to Howard Park Bowling Club.
Information for new/current members
Our Club was founded in 1969. We currently have around 80 members and our green is maintained by and rented from the local council.
We have noted the following information in order to help with your introduction as a new member of Howard Park Bowling Club.
If you should have any queries or suggestions on settling in not contained in the following notes please don’t hesitate to contact your Club Secretary, Kevin Oxlade, or any other Committee Member who you will find listed in your Club Membership Booklet. This booklet also gives a list of all Club members, along with telephone numbers and e-mail addresses, as well as full details of the season’s league fixtures, friendly games and various open and social days’.
A copy of the Club rules are on permanent display in the Clubhouse so we would ask that you familiarise yourself with them please.
Entry to the Green and Clubhouse is available to all members at the under noted times but as necessary security arrangements are required for entry; a demonstration will be given when requested. Prior to this we would suggest you arrange your visits to the Club when other members are in attendance.
The Green keepers normally work on the green during weekday mornings and members are free to use the green from 1.00 pm.week days and all day on Saturdays and Sundays. A" rinks book" is available to members in order that rinks for competitions can be booked therein. Practice sessions i.e. "roll ups" can be played on vacant rinks.
Bowling Shoes with flat soles must be worn at all times on the green
In Club matches two styles of dress are required on the green and this is determined by the type of competition being played. If the team selection sheet states dress as GREYS (usually for league matches) then the requirement is: -
Grey trousers for men and grey trousers or skirts for ladies, to be worn with a Club shirt, blouse, jumper or jacket. Alternatively shirts, blouses, jumpers and jackets in plain white are acceptable.
If the team selection sheet states dress as WHITES (usually for friendly matches but also for some County & North Hants competitions) then the requirement is:-
White tops worn with white trousers or skirts.
For "Roll up Periods" on Monday/Tuesday evenings and Friday afternoons a more relaxed dress code is acceptable but under no circumstances are jeans or tops without a collar or sleeves allowed on the green and socks must be worn when shorts are the preferred choice..
When representing the Club some members prefer to dress more formally, men wearing a Club tie, white shirt and blazer, ladies a white blouse and blazer. Club ties & blazer badges can be purchased at the Club. Contact Tony Kite if you are interested.
Instruction & Coaching
Instruction and coaching is available within the club, from our qualified coaching staff. Our established members will also be pleased to offer their help to new bowlers. Just make contact with any member of the committee for more information.
You will see from your Club Fixture List that the Club has a busy diary that includes many Friendly Matches against other Clubs. Most of our Friendlies are played at weekends; they consist of mixed games, either rinks (teams of 4 players using 2 woods each) or triples (teams of 3 players using 3 woods each)
The dress, time, venue and format will be indicated in your fixture list and teams will be made up of a mixture of both experienced and new bowlers so do volunteer for these games as soon as you feel confident enough.
Lists requesting players will be displayed on the notice board and the Match Secretary will be responsible for selecting the teams. When selected you should tick your name as soon as possible, or if you cannot play inform the Match Secretary ASAP.If selected as a reserve you are expected to turn up as you may be needed.
Tea is an integral part of a friendly game so for home games refreshments will be supplied by the Club for both members and guests. A charge of £3.00 to each playing member will be made to cover this cost.
It is also the usual practice to offer your opponent a drink from the bar after the game and as a raffle is usually held so please make sure you have some money in your pocket to cover these costs.
Help is needed before a game and afterwards to set up the rinks and help clear away. A rota will operate for laying tables and making tea. Away games entail travelling to other Clubs and it is usual practice to share transport and transport costs wherever possible.
When you feel that you would like to play in league games let the Club Captain know. The Spring Meeting is the best time to ask about joining the desired leagues. Howard Park enters teams in the following Leagues:-
Monday evenings: - Men’s triple team in the Basingstoke & District League.
Tuesday evenings: - A ladies league team consisting of two triples of ladies one home and one away.
Wednesday evening: - 3 teams of mixed gender in the Whitchurch League.
Thursday Afternoon: - 3 teams of mixed gender in the Stan Hardiman League.
Friday Evening: - 1 team of men’s rinks in the BDBA League.
Both home and away matches a small charge of £2.50 is made. For home evening matches we provide a supper for the players, and for the Ladies League and the Stan Hardiman Leagues, tea & biscuits only are served for yourself and partner. This is dealt with by a member of the team and is organized by the Team Manager on a strict rota basis. Again the etiquette at the end of the game is the same as in the Friendlies, i.e. offering your opponent a drink.
Procedure for checking to see if you are playing is the same as in the Friendlies, i.e. check the notice boards, tick your name off as available or if you cannot play let your manager know immediately. Also, if you are included as a reserve please note you are expected to turn up.
Club Competitions are organized annually by the Competition Secretary and entry forms are given to all members with the membership forms. When entering a competition it is imperative that challenges are made promptly in accordance with the club rules so that games are played by the due dates.
Club finals dates are displayed in the membership booklet, so if for any reason you are not available on the Finals days don’t enter the competitions.
External Competitions are organized by the: - Whitchurch Bowling Association—Basingstoke & Deane B A. -- North Hants Women’s BA.—Bowls Hampshire -- as well as Bowls England,.
Watch the notice boards for entry forms.
Open Days & Social days - "Spoon Drives"
The Club holds Open Days and "Spoon Drives" during the playing season. On these days there are many ways that members can help in the smooth running of these events by assisting with catering or setting up the rinks.
Raffles and Fun Days are some of the ways that the Club raises funds. Obviously it is most important that everyone helps to raise funds for the Club, principally in order to keep our membership fees low but also in order for us, as a Club, to be able to support our President’s chosen charity as well.
It is a condition of membership that you undertake a share of the domestic duties in the Club, and you will be asked to choose between bar duties and clubhouse cleaning when you renew your membership every year. This is a minimum requirement and you will appreciate that as with any successful club the more you put into your club the more you will get out of it.
Etiquette on the green
Bowls is a very sociable game to play. It’s very pace gives you the opportunity to enjoy other players company and allows friendships to be formed. That’s providing a few simple rules of etiquette are observed:
Always introduce yourself to your opponent(s).
Stand well behind the mat when he/she is bowling.
Do not run and shout on the green after delivering your wood
Remember to keep still behind the head when the Skips are bowling.
Walk quickly and centrally up the green when changing ends so as not to disturb bowlers on adjacent rinks.
Congratulate and commiserate with fellow bowlers. Do not rejoice at others misfortunes.
Encourage new bowlers, build a good team spirit and be cheerful in adversity.
Social membership is available for a minimal annual fee to family and friends, who are non-bowlers but wish to share the Club’s facilities,
Hopefully these notes will help you to understand and appreciate what is expected of you as a member of Howard Park Bowls Club. At the outset, do not believe that you have joined only to play bowls. Every member assumes responsibility immediately he/she is admitted. You will find that the Officers of your Club generously give their time and energy so that you can enjoy and play your game. Your support is needed in all functions organized for the good of the Club. Do your part to enhance this Club’s reputation, be proud of it and never do anything to let your Club down.