Polmaise BC Club Story
Polmaise BC Club Story
Try Bowls Club, Polmaise Bowling Club in Stirling show outstanding efforts to rejuvenate their Junior Section. The bowling club which sits in the small mining village of Fallin, has been at the heart of the community for many years however it has seen a worrying decline in Junior members over the last few decades. The club in previous decades had a thriving junior section with around 30 junior members who where a vital part of the club, now in recent times the members and committee of Polmaise BC have shown great efforts to bring back the younger generation of bowlers to create a strong junior section which reflects that of the 90’s and early 2000’s!
Recently the Committee members of Polmaise BC have taken action to combat this decline by creating fun and accessible bowling sessions for the primary school children with the help of Active Stirling as well as taking to social media to advertise the TryBowls sessions and liaising with the local community council to spread the word of bowls to the local people of Fallin.
The club began with the committee members talking to the local primary school staff to begin to plan and organise the sessions. Polmaise BC began by taking the children to the local community centre over the winter months, where every Wednesday lunchtime they would hold indoor carpet bowling sessions. Following the success of these indoor sessions the club and primary school children took to the local bowling green in the spring to begin to build and develop the school kids’ lawn bowls skills. The club now make the coaching sessions an annual success with the Fallin Primary School children spending afternoons on the bowling green for weeks in the summer, they can then return to play in the Polmaise BC junior section on a Sunday for free!
Speaking on the start-up of the TryBowls session, Club Secretary, Peter Black has added:
“I spoke to the head teacher, and she allowed me to take the kids on a Wednesday lunch time in the Community Centre over the winter, then in April once the greens opened, we took them on a Friday morning for 1 hour. I asked the school if we could try a Friday afternoon in the Community Centre for 4 weeks then 2 weeks on the green. We now do this each year 2-3 weeks on the green on a Friday afternoon and 3 weeks after school for those who want to come. We then try and get them to attend the Junior club on a Sunday All Free.”
This year in 2023 the club had around 20 different kids each week taking part in the Friday TryBowls sessions, the teachers and support for learning assistants also all joined in with the sessions and helped the club members to try to create a fun new sporting experience for all the children. Once the coaching sessions are complete the children are rewarded for all their hard work with a certificate presentation. Around 6-10 children come back to the club’s junior section and play with the Club on a Sunday.
Polmaise BC have shown outstanding commitment to ensuring that bowls will continue to be a sport which is accessible for people of any age. The committee members and bowlers not only allow the children to come back to the bowling green on a Sunday for free, but their sessions are also all run on a volunteer basis where the volunteers provide snacks and juice for the children, truly going above and beyond to ensure they have fun learning and developing their bowls skills.
Polmaise BC understand that without the Junior memberships and TryBowls sessions, the sport of bowls would not progress and develop, and the many bowling clubs all over the nation could face closures. Their efforts are helping keep bowls at the heart of the community.
Peter Black from Polmaise BC added:
“If we do not continue our efforts to bring in junior members we could close. When we first started this 18-20 years ago, we had a junior club of 28 kids once they left school and started work, got married and so on, around 8 have come back and are the backbone to Polmaise now some even go on the committee. So, we will keep tyring. The most important reason is to survive, if we do not keep trying to bring new members the community, we could lose this vital asset.”
Thank you to Peter Black from Polmaise BC who has provided this great information surrounding the clubs efforts to attract junior members. Bowls Scotland wish the club every success in as it continues to create links with the local community.
If your club would like to follow in the footsteps of Polmaise BC and become a TryBowls Club click here.