News (5)

Rookery BC
The 2018 Love Fisher Brown Award, sponsored by Factory Eleven, was created to recognise clubs that provide disabled participation opportunities for their bowlers. This award, named after the remarkable and inspiring Commonwealth Games achievements of Bob Love, David Fisher and Paul Brown, showcases the excellent work being undertaken by clubs with disabled bowlers around the country, and provide a benchmark for other clubs to aspire to. The Disability Steering Group panel, comprised of representatives from the Activity Alliance, Bowls Development Alliance, Bowls England, Disability Bowls England and English Indoor Bowling Association, assessed each of the 16 strong nominations, and after much discussion and thought are delighted to announced that the following entries have been selected as this year’s prize winners:
  • 2018 Love Fisher Brown Award Winners – Rookery Bowling Club
  • 2018 Love Fisher Brown Award Runner Up – Peacehaven & Telscombe Bowls Club
  • 2018 Love Fisher Brown Award Runner Up – Donyngs Indoor Bowling Club
Furthermore, for their outstanding achievements over the past year and the quality of their nominations, the following clubs have been Highly Commended: City and County of Bristol IBC; Lincoln & District IBC; Riverside IBC; and Stoke BC.
On behalf of the award panel, George Babalev (Club Development Co-ordinator and Disability Lead for the Bowls Development Alliance) said: “The standard of entries proved to be exceptionally high and the nature of the activities detailed within them were both inspiring and humbling. All sixteen entries had much to be commended for and it is extremely heartening to hear of the fantastic work that is taking place to provide opportunities for disabled people to participate in bowls. Ultimately, however, there has to be a winner and Rookery Bowling Club were the award panel’s choice to receive the 2018 Love Fisher Brown Award with the entries from Peacehaven & Telscombe BC and Donyngs IBC securing the two runner-up prizes.

Throughout the year, Love Fisher Brown Award entrants will be profiled, and their great work showcased. The first entrant to be profiled is the 2018 Love Fisher Brown Award winners Rookery Bowling Club.

In the autumn of 2017, members of the committee of Rookery Bowls Club set up Stowmarket Rookery Community Bowls Group to get as many groups and people with disabilities as active as possible, meet new people and achieve personal goals of their own through bowls. The club is currently working in the community 5 days a week promoting the bowls club as a "happy" place to be. The club:
  • visits 5 care homes and now have group visits booked 4 - 5 times a week, well into 2019.
  • engages with over 60 people per week in care homes.
  • forms part of the local Dementia Action Alliance.
  • helped a visually impaired man achieve his goal of competing with sighted people.
  • invites and inspires all disabled people to leave their chairs and join the club to achieve the goals of their own!
  • is updating and refurbishing their building to become a fully accessible community hub equipped with lots of dementia friendly games, activities and films for their visitors at the community sessions. 
You can learn more about what the dedicated committee members and volunteers from Rookery BC are doing by watching this short video.
Chris Brooks, the club recruitment and advertisement lead said:I believe that our success in just over a year proves that if all bowls clubs adopted or adapted our project in their location it would also be a huge success for them too. It would provide a win-win situation for bowling clubs and disability groups and individuals throughout the country.

I have been blown away by the enthusiasm of the group and their appetite to create new opportunities for their local community. Through their good work they are not only reducing isolation and loneliness by bringing people together, but they are also making a positive difference to physical activity levels in the area – something that has long lasting benefits for both the individual concerned and the wider communityAdam Baker, Strategic Lead for Physical Activity Directorate of Health, Wellbeing and Children’s Services Suffolk County Council.
Friday, 01 February 2019 08:30

2019 Spring Package Window Open

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The Bowls Development Alliance [BDA] are delighted to announce that the 2019 Spring Play Bowls package application window has now opened. The window will remain open until 5pm, Tuesday 30th April 2019.

In addition to postal applications, clubs can also apply online using the following link:

For more details about BDA package funding visit

Thursday, 24 January 2019 08:40

The WI partner with Women Can

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The Bowls Development Alliance is delighted to announce an exciting new partnership with the National Women’s Institute.

The partners will be working together across the country to provide opportunities for WI members to get involved in the sport of bowls. This project is part of the national WOMEN CAN project which aims to encourage more women to play bowls, coach bowls and volunteer in bowls.

Currently only 39% of the bowling club population in England are women, and this campaign has been developed to increase that number to 45% by 2021.

Anna Coulson, WOMEN CAN lead, said:

“We are very excited to be working with the Women’s Institute on this project to encourage more women to become involved in the sport. We hope that we can inspire more women to join the bowling community and enjoy the playing and social opportunities the sport has to offer.”

Lynne Stubbings, Chair of the NFWI, said:

“We are delighted to be working with the Bowls Development Alliance on this exciting new project which will inspire and empower WI members to become involved and participate in the sport of bowls. This programme is open to all members, regardless of age or ability and we hope that it’ll be successful in increasing the percentage of women in the English bowling community. For members who already have an interest in bowls, and others that have never played the game before, the programme will offer fun, friendship and a chance to get active outside of WI meetings.”

For more information on this exciting new programme and the  WOMEN  CAN campaign please contact Anna Coulson This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website where our campaign video can be viewed at  showcasing what the sport can offer women of all ages.

Friday, 30 November 2018 09:13

BDA Statement - Coach Bowls

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As agreed in 2016 with Sport England and the Bowls Development Alliance (BDA) the transition of coaching to the member National Governing Bodies will be effective from April 1st 2019. This transition forms part of a long-term sustainability plan to ensure that coaching is embedded into the sport.

From 1st April 2019 responsibility will move across to English Indoor Bowling Association (EIBA) and Bowls England (BE) who have made a joint commitment to continue to support and develop coaching for the benefit of the sport.

Both British Crown Green Bowling Association and English Short Mat Bowling Association will continue to support Coach Bowls and to encourage all their coaches to move across to the nationally recognised qualifications.

The BDA and the member National Governing Bodies have been working towards a smooth managed transition over the past twelve months and will continue to do so over the remaining four months.

“Coach Bowls” remains under the direct management of the BDA until 31st March 2019.

The BDA will continue to deliver its’ “Play Bowls Strategy” through to March 31st, 2021.

Early next year information will become available from Sport England regarding applications for further funding to take the BDA through to March 31st, 2025.

Finally, as per the joint statement issued by BDA, EIBA, and BE on 1st August 2015, Coach Bowls is and continues to be the only recognised bowls qualification for flat green indoor and outdoor bowls.

Further details about the progress of the transition will be released in early January 2019.

Tuesday, 20 November 2018 10:40

Women Can resource pack has launched!

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We have now launched our WOMEN CAN resource pack! We would love for clubs to keep us updated with the great work you are doing whether it be taster sessions, open days, events and don’t forget to sign up to our campaign by going to

How do I get my hands on a WOMEN CAN pack you asked? Sign up now!