Author: Dawn Slaughter

Day 19 – National Lockdown Countdown

We’re in the teens!  Hoo-bloomin’-ray!

Chatted to a couple of people over the last few days and we all felt this lockdown was dragging more than the first.  Maybe it’s because we’re not having to make a definite time to dash to the shops to buy food?  How about you?

Margaret B rang.  She has loads of local history to go towards the centenary. Margaret joined the Club in 1995 following an ad for an Open Day on LBC!  That sounds so avant garde for a bowls club in the 90s.  She came along and was subsequently coached by Bill Holmes and I apologise because I’ve forgotten the name of the other gentleman – was it Cudmore?  Betty Carter also joined from the LBC ad.  The Ladies section was very formal – blazers, skirts hats, gloves were de rigeur for friendly matches!

Cast your mind back.  Why did you start playing bowls?  Were you inspired by your grandparents?

If you haven’t ventured outside yet, it’s showery but not cold – not as cold as it should be for mid November anyway.  Take 10 minutes to walk to the end of your road and back, if nothing else.

First of the three meals-on-wheels run tomorrow (Sunday).  If any of you would like to join the list for next Sunday, please let Ange or me know.  We can be very childish and ring your doorbell and run away (having left your meal on the doorstep) !


Day 20 – National Lockdown Countdown – Assorted News

Firstly, a belated Happy Birthday to Jim Parker who is alive and kicking in Rustington.  His granddaughter has moved in to look after him, which he is very happy about.

Secondly, check out Ann H’s response on the Day 21 post.  What a brilliant story about her first bowls match!

Thirdly, thanks to Breda who has been keeping the paths at the club swept clear of leaves on Wednesday.  Ange and Scott were getting blisters and a physical work out yesterday by sweeping all the leaves off the car park.  It looked heaps (excuse the pun) better when they’d finished – let’s hope they haven’t all blown back this morning!  However, just as I type it’s started bucketing outside my office, so there will be a lot more to sweep up next week.  At least the blisters will have healed by then.

Fourthly, did any of you watch DIY SOS last night when they built a new Surfability Centre?  Worth seeing on iPlayer catch up.  It’s Children in Need’s big day today.  The programmes showing the issues some of the children have had during lockdown without their support groups has been heartbreaking and humbling.  Hats off to them and their parents.

And finally, leaving the sad news until last.  Middlesex Ladies former President Maureen Ayling lost her Covid battle on Wednesday.  Maureen played for many years at Bishop Duppas outdoors and Egham indoors, holding many committee posts and was a very enthusiastic club member supporting all the members.  Many of our ladies will know her, if not our chaps.  We send our deepest sympathies to her family at this tough time.

Day 21 – National Lockdown Countdown – Cambridge Park Centenary


There will be quite a few posts in the next couple of months as we look towards the Club’s Centenary next year.

I’m a bit worried none of you seem to remember your first bowls match at the club – can you get your thinking caps on, please?!

We are getting some ‘casual’ wear Centenary Polo Shirts and want to pick your brains re colours

The options are Navy, White, Red and Sapphire Blue (teal/turquoise to you and me!) as first options.  They will have the club centenary badge (Scott has enhanced our current badge) embroidered on the left breast,

together with the ABC Clinic logo on the right sleeve.  ABC are kindly putting some sponsorship in.

The shirts can be worn for roll ups, golf, tennis, bridge, wandering around town, out for coffee with friends etc.   (We have to stick to the regulation approved shirts for club matches.)  Norman is in charge and provided we know how many and what sizes, we can get them in time for those who want one from Father Christmas!  They will retail at £20 each.

Hopefully we’ll be able to get digital samples on the coloured backgrounds to display on here.

Day 23 – National Lockdown Countdown – Whoop, Whoop, Whoop!

Welcome to a new day and brilliant news all over the news channels, radio stations and newspapers, following on from last night’s announcements!

The Professor of Immunology (Daniel M Davis) from Manchester University was extremely positive about the vaccine, scoring it 8 out of 10.  The 2 other points are (1) the difficulties is storing it at -80C which could be a problem for GP surgeries not just in the UK but worldwide and (2), as yet, they are not sure how long the immunity will last.  However there is some light at the end of the tunnel which must include back to playing indoor and outdoor bowls!

There should be a plan for what will happen as regards Christmas guidelines shortly.  Let’s hope there is a certain amount of freedom for meeting with family.  In the meantime, we all need to behave and follow the current rules and restrictions.

So good to have uplifting news, isn’t it?

Day 24 – National Lockdown Countdown

Has it really only been 4 and a bit days since we closed?  Feels like a month!  Good to socially distance bump into Eileen and Alan J and grandson in Osterley Park yesterday.  The leaves are falling from the trees but there is plenty of space to walk around and the cafe is open for take away hot drinks and biscuits, but you have to stand up to drink as there are no tables or chairs.

After all the hype over the US election, today has been a bit of a slow news day, although the agreement to provide school meals throughout the Christmas holiday period is good.

I saw Father Christmas and assorted reindeer and snowmen outside a house on the London Road at lunchtime, no doubt waiting for the dark to descend so the lights could go on.  I’m not sure it will make the lockdown pass any quicker but at least there will be something cheerful to look at as you go past.

Hopefully Peter and Lyn C will be putting their display up again outside their house.  They raise a fantastic amount of money for cancer support in donations every year.  We’ll let you know when they’ll be ready to view.

Talking of evenings drawing in, here’s the link to the online edition of Inside Bowls which you may like to browse through over a cup of tea or something.

Here is your link to the November 2020 edition of Inside Bowls, the official publication of World Bowls:

Day 25 – National Lockdown Countdown – Remembrance Sunday

2020  A year when everything has changed

What hasn’t changed is that millions gave up their lives for us today.  Our parents, grandparents and other relatives fought for us in two world wars and other more recent battles striving for peace and freedom.  We cannot thank them enough.

In 2020 doctors, nurses and key workers across the world are fighting on our behalf to beat Covid-19.  We have witnessed courage, determination, sacrifice and kindness at closer hand.  They still need our support to beat the virus.  We cannot thank them enough either.

Today we can remember those who we have loved and lost, whether it be 100, 75, 50, 25, 5 or less than 1 year ago and thank them for shaping and touching our lives.

For those who play indoors, we learned yesterday that Peter Hind passed away in his care home in Suffolk last weekend.  A kind and gentle man and our thoughts go out to his family at this sad time.

Day 26 – National Lockdown Countdown – Sunny Saturday

I seem to have been out all day so apologies that this come so late in the day, although I am sure you’re not all sitting around waiting to see what pops up next.

Hasn’t the weather been brilliant today?  It wasn’t busy in Richmond at 9.00 am but I have just returned from walking through Syon Park around Brentford Lock and back and there are lots of people out walking, on bikes and in groups of more than 2 – how does that work out under current restrictions?  Is it me?

The outdoor green looked lovely and most of the worms must still have been in bed by the lack of multiple worm casts and birds, although it was about 8.30 am.  I presume the indoor green looks the same as it always does.  Shame we can’t have closer look with bowls!


Day 27 – National Lockdown Countdown – Cambridge Park Centenary Looming!

One day down and only 27 to go of the National Lockdown and 197 days to the Anniversary of the first ever match at Cambridge Park!

So, thinking ahead to our Centenary next year, I opened the photos that Paul Reynolds had dug up from the Middlesex archives.  This included details of the opening match on 21st May 1921.

One of the teams playing in the match came from Richmond Bowls Club with a Mr Staples in the team !

(You will probably need to enlarge the photos to read them properly)

Do you remember your first match at Cambridge Park?

I had a coaching session with Margaret B on a Wednesday afternoon in May 2011 and she thought I had an aptitude for the game and if I practised I would be able to play in the odd friendly match “in 2-3 weeks time”.  About 15 minutes later, she said “Are you free on Saturday afternoon?” !  I don’t remember too much apart from the excitement and nervousness … and my bowls not exactly being near the jack!  Maurice Byron was my skip for that match and Ron Petch the skip for my first indoor match.  Margaret, Maurice and Jane and other club members were really kind to such a complete beginner.  If it wasn’t for the way they looked after me, I probably wouldn’t still be playing!

Anyone else like to share their memories?



Day 28 – National Lockdown – 2nd Post – Save our Sport Petition

This arrived in my inbox from the EIBA last night.  Please check it out and sign if you feel you can.  (It’s not compulsory and I appreciate that not everyone likes to sign petitions.  You have the right to choose whether to sign or not.)


In light of the second national lockdown which will bring a full closure of grassroots sport, fitness and leisure, without emergency government support, like that given to the arts sector, community sport and physical activity faces a bleak future that will be difficult to recover from, impacting the nation’s physical and mental health and damaging Britain’s ability to Build Back Better.

That’s why we are supporting the Sports Recovery Fund petition which calls on the government to instigate emergency support to ensure sports clubs, fitness and leisure facilities – the lifeblood of communities across the nation – can remain open and survive the difficult months.

Join us and support the petition to save grassroots sport, fitness and leisure by signing the public petition and forward onto your members, family and friends.

 This has also been posted on the EIBA website


Joanne Shore

International and Communications Administrator
English Indoor Bowling Association Ltd
Tel: 01664 481900
Facebook: englishindoorbowls