Bognor Regis Bowls Club

Captains' Report 2014

Hi, and welcome to my second Captain's Page.

Bognor Regis Bowls Club Captain 2014

With the season well and truly over I would like to reflect on what, I feel, has been a very good season for Bognor. Our season started very well with the President v Captains' match on the opening day with over 50 bowlers. Enjoying one of the best summers for a good while, friendlies were well supported and although a record is not kept of the results I feel sure that we won more than we lost. Our coach trips to Croydon and Southampton were as usual well supported and I look forward to welcoming Southampton to our green for their day out.

The league teams performed well with the B team achieving its highest ever position in finishing fourth - this after a very bad start in only winning one of their first six matches, but then winning nine of the next twelve. They suffered from not having a few of the stronger players available early on and hopefully that won't happen next season and coupled with some experienced players having joined us I am very hopeful that our B team can challenge for promotion next season.

My worst nightmare last season after taking over from Ned, who captained us to promotion and kept us in the first division, was to get relegated, but fear not, we were always comfortable in mid-table with victories over Chichester, the league champions Worthing and our biggest success in ending Worthing Pavillion's run of 30 matches undefeated with a 10-nil thrashing.

Still handicapped by league rules on selection, and with several players knocking on the door of the A team, selection will be very difficult next season. Although knocked out in the first round of the PC Cup and the County fours, we did again reach the final of the Midhurst Cup only to be beaten yet again by a very strong Chichester side. We enjoyed better luck in regaining the Holebrook Cup where we defeated Hotham in the final. We also won the Paul Whittle Trophy against RAFA.

I have always maintained that Bognor is a happy, friendly and welcoming club and this is due in part to many of the members and what they do for the the club. Apart from your elected officers who manage the day to day proceedings, we have Norman and Ned, who for six years now have been running highly successful trips to Portugal - consisting of mainly Bognor members and a few guests from other clubs, there was over 40 people enjoying some very competitive bowling on the last trip. For the last three seasons since its inauguration we have won the Premier FX Cup, sponsored by our Terry's nephew Peter - the last two years, both times, by just the ONE shot! We also regained the Regis Shield against our host club, Pedras de Raina. In 2013 we came 1st and 2nd in a open competition against the best of the Algarve pocketing €300 euros in the process - although not played this year it is being played next year so here's hoping! Norman and Ned now have the help of Jane, who is planning a trip to Portugal in April.

The Bognor Tourists were heading for extinction until, thanks to our President Dave, were resurrected and with nearly all Bognor players, enjoyed a hugely successful, 2 night/2 match trip to Eastbourne were they won the inaugural match for the Gerry Mitchell Plate against Motcombe Gardens in memory of Gerry, who was a past Captain of Bognor and a Tourists' stalwart, who sadly passed away last summer. Trevor is to begin editing a regular newsletter to keep members informed of what is going on in your club - results, etc and welcomes contributions.

What can one say about our very own Val Parnell, Ted, who after three highly successful and profitable shows for the club is now planning another for next June. I know how stressful this is for Teddy and we are so grateful not only to him but those others I just mentioned for all that they do for our club - THANK YOU. Finally, I believe that there is an uncertain future for bowling in Bognor. With the demise of Telepost and the exodus from Pagham, how long can the powers that be sustain three greens at two locations in the town.

There is also further uncertainty with the Inspire Leisure contract up for renewal and that bowls will not be included in the new contract.

That is all in the future, so on a brighter note, let's just look forward to next spring, the sun shining and the start of the new season.

Steve Soames

Men's Captain 2014