Bowls Scotland 2019 AGM Report
The 2019 Bowls Scotland AGM took place on Wednesday 27th November at Hampden Park in Glasgow.
The meeting was the ideal opportunity for the Bowls Scotland Board of Directors to launch the new 2019-2023 strategy of how we plan to move the sport forward in the next four years. This includes the integration of the new Empowering Women in Bowls programme with former Scottish international swimmer, Arlene Ewing, has been appointed onto the Board to explore the different ways we can get more women involved in bowls.
John Anderson and Margaret Halliday were also welcomed as our new Gents and Lady Presidents for 2020 following on from Jock Halliday and Kathleen Gordon, who both had brilliant years as President. Jock and Kathleen were also made Honorary Members of Bowls Scotland along with George Barr (former District 9 Secretary).
Unfortunately, we lost some dear friends and key volunteers over the last year and we are extremely saddened for the passing of Alan Davidson (District 9 Secretary and former Director of Bowls Scotland), Dorothy Freeburn (former President of Bowls Scotland) and David Scaife (District 27 Secretary).
Some of the main highlights of 2019 were the High-Performance team qualifying in every discipline for next years World Championships at the Atlantic Championships held in Cardiff in May as Team Scotland won 7 out of 8 medals.
Scotland’s youngsters also had a great year as the Women’s U25 International team won the BIWBC International Series for the first time in 10 years at the National Centre for Bowling, Ayr. The Mens’s U25 International team were not to be outdone by this feat and won the BIBC International Series for a record-equalling third year in a row at Essex County BC.
The 2019 National Championships were the biggest and best yet as a record 12,264 spectators passed through the gates of Northfield over the week. A total of £1,016,357 was generated for the local economy in South Ayrshire as over 20 national champions were crowned on the greens.
2019 was also the first year of the new Ladies National Top 10 which proved to be a major success with 37 teams from around Scotland entering the competition. The grand finals day saw plenty of high-quality bowls as the final between West Fife WBA and the Allsorts came right down to the very last bowl, with the Allsorts coming out on top.
Para-Bowls has now become part of the Bowls Scotland High Performance programme and this got off to a successful start as an emerging squad and the para-bowls squad took on Australia’s Elite squad at Royal Leamington Spa in July. The Scots came on out top winning the test series 2-1 on the greens that will host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
Bowls Scotland’s Development Team have had another busy year which has seen the launch of the new Bowls Mark club accreditation scheme. Nairn BC, Alyth BC, Prestwick Howie BC and Ardeer Recreation BC are the first four clubs to achieve the Bronze award with many others set to follow. Our Coaching Awards received high recognition when we were invited to Guernsey by World Bowls to deliver courses to European nations prior to the start of the European Championships.
The European Championships proved to be a successful tournament for Scotland both on and off the green. Team Scotland clinched silver medals in the men’s pairs and overall team event whilst it was also announced that Scotland will host the 2021 European Championships at the National Centre for Bowling, Ayr.
Most recently, Paul Foster MBE and Alex Marshall MBE won the ‘Team of the Year Award’ at the Team Scotland Awards in Edinburgh. The iconic duo won an incredible fourth World Indoor Pairs title at Potters Leisure Resort in January. They out voted tough competition and proved to be worthy winners which saw them against the Scotland Women’s Football Team and Scotland Wheelchair Curling.
We are forever grateful for our partners and this year we were delighted to welcome on board IQ Fire & Security and Prostate Cancer UK to add to our official partners. We’d like to also thank our current existing partners Taylor Bowls, Kukri Sports, Castle Water and Jack High Insurance for their continued support.
Thank you to everyone for making 2019 an incredible year and we are already looking forward to our 10th year anniversary in 2020.