Return to the Green Story: Dunfermline BC
As part of our Return to the Green campaign, we have been sharing club stories and encouraging clubs to focus on three areas this season: Reassure your members, Reconnect with your community and Respect Covid safety measures.
Dunfermline Bowling Club in Fife hold a variety of events and fundraisers for both club members and their wider community and Bowls Scotland caught up with Gaynor Hynd-Hill, Club Secretary for a Q&A to find out more about the club’s 2021 season…
What role does Dunfermline BC play within the community?
Not only do we provide an opportunity for individuals to learn and play the game of bowls but we also have a bar and a social space which can be used by members and visitors for small events. In addition, every Easter we collect eggs, chicks, bunnies and books to be distributed to underprivileged children and young people in the area. This year 135 items were collected. Again at Christmas a similar drive is undertaken to provide toys, selection boxes and gifts. In December 2020, 110 items were collected. Covid restrictions have not inhibited our membership undertaking these collections. We hope that this year the club can bring back our Christmas themed coffee morning, to be held in November.
How did it feel to reopen the club and welcome members back this season?
Having not played bowls for 18 months it was a little strange to get back on the green. It was great to meet up with friends that we have not seen for a long time. Not all the membership has returned to play but they are hopeful that 2022 will mean that they will be able to get back out there.
Our main goal for 2021 is that all our members remain fit and healthy. We are looking forward to 2022 and being able to enter competitions. It is hoped that a full fixture list of friendlies will once again be in place.
How has the club and committee responded to covid?
It was considered that in such uncertain times the health and wellbeing of our membership was paramount and so a decision was made earlier this year not to enter any Association competitions and to cancel all friendlies for 2021. Four of our members have undertaken the Covid Officer training to provide cover in the case of illness or holidays. All activities were and continue to be governed by the covid regulations of the time and so it was agreed that internal competitions could take place as well as hat nights and a Saturday game. In addition, we have started a competition on a Wednesday evening (which is normally a league night) based on league rules. To add something different for the Saturday games we have arranged a Pasta and Pizza Day which will comprise of a game of bowls followed by, not surprisingly, pasta and pizza. Other events are in the pipeline.
Tell us some more about your Christmas in June event –
We held a Christmas in June event (“Junemas”) on 26th June. This was inspired by the Aldi supermarket who had advertised a limited range of items for people to celebrate Christmas. With committee approval we expanded this idea and decorated the club with tinsel, Christmas trees, balloons, Santas and snowmen! Everyone was encouraged to wear Christmas hats and tops. A snowman hat appeared complete with a mask. A game of bowls was followed by a nearest to the jack in the middle of the green, a bottle in a box, a raffle where all prizes were wrapped in Christmas paper, a Christmas hamper was also raffled and a Christmas buffet was provided. Serving tongs and gloves were available to keep health and safety issues to the fore. Social distancing was observed which meant that the club capacity was limited. However over thirty people came and each received a cracker, a party popper, a “Junemas” card, a gift, a goodie bag of sweets and a bag to put everything in. All food etc was donated by the membership. The day was such a success that we are considering making it an annual event.
In addition to their own events and fundraisers, Dunfermline BC have signed up to Try Bowls, Bowls Scotland’s membership growth programme, and have small events planned for the summer.
Why did the club sign up for Try Bowls 2021?
The Try Bowls event 2021 is not only to encourage new members but also to provide something a little different for a Saturday game. We are looking to use the Bowlsparc equipment purchased through Bowls Scotland on part of the green with a round robin format.
Bowlsparc offer a range of Targets and Obstacles that can be used by clubs to create fun, interactive and colourful learning activities for bowlers young and old. Often used as a fun, social way to introduce new bowlers to the sport, it can also be used to improve accuracy and ability during coaching or practice.
To find out more about Try Bowls and games and activities you can set up for your event, visit: https://www.bowlsscotland.com/club-development/try-bowls or speak to your National Development Officer.
Thanks to Gaynor and the rest of the Committee at Dunfermline BC for sharing their Return to the Green story with us.