Cobalt Sport

Chipping Campden have come a long way in the 21st century

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Author: Roger Jackson, Posted: Thursday, 24th May 2018, 09:00

Chipping Campden Bowling Club have more than 50 members Chipping Campden Bowling Club have more than 50 members

Roger Burfoot has been playing for bowls for 25 years and for all but the first six months of those 25 years he has been fixtures secretary at Chipping Campden Bowling Club.

The 63-year-old had never played the sport before that but since becoming involved it has certainly been a big part of his life.

“I was press-ganged into it,” he laughed. “A friend of a friend asked me to play. He lent me his woods and then six months later they had me down as fixture secretary. I’ve been doing the job ever since!”

In those days in the 1990s Chipping Campden played all their games away from the town. Formed in 1910, they left their home behind the Noel Arms in the High Street at the start of the 90s and didn’t return to the town until after the start of the 21st century.

Their new home is in Station Road and a pretty impressive place it is too with a clubhouse and a six/seven rink green.

“Yes, it’s very good,” said Burfoot. “We kept the nucleus of the members together while we were playing only away games and that shows the strength of the club.”

Indeed it does. These days they club have some 55 members and although Burfoot said they’d like another 20, the club are clearly doing okay.

Paul and Debbie Barnes are the current chairman and secretary of the club while the men’s captain is Terry Brotherton and Barbara Hayes is the ladies’ captain.

They, like David Hands, Graham Harvey, Shirley Gooderham and Yvonne Gardner, have been involved with the club for a good number of years. And the club’s president is Frank Leadbetter, who is 94.

Fourteen of the 50-plus members are women and the club field mixed teams in the South Warwickshire Kineton League – three rinks of four – as well as the North Cotswold League where they play four triples.

The men also play a series of friendly matches and also enter the two-rink and three-rink county competitions.

“The county competitions are really competitive,” added Burfoot. “We’re getting better and we’re hoping to improve some more.”

And while competition is good in all sport, Burfoot admits that one of the things that he particularly likes about bowls is the social side.

“It’s a great opportunity to meet people, visit new places and the teas are always nice!” he said.

And Burfoot will get plenty of opportunity to enjoy all three when he goes on the club’s annual end-of summer tour.

“We’re going to stay in Torquay,” he said. “It’s at the end of August and about 40 of us are going. We’re playing clubs like Teignmouth and Newton Abbot.”

Some of those going on tour are just social members but that only adds to the fun. You can see why people like Roger Burfoot like bowls so much!

Other Images

Chipping Campden Bowling Club’s home is in Station Road

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