Race Night and Supper Saturday 4th March 7pm
Registration Night Friday 7th April 6:30pm.
Bowling Green opens Saturday 15th April 2pm.
Easter Monday Lunch 17th April.
The east wind doth blow, and we shall have snow! Well maybe not but there's certainly still a chill in the air, although the days are getting longer so spring must be just around the corner!Taking a look back first though to the events at the end of last year, at the AGM in November the 'new' committee was voted in. Most posts remain unchanged for the coming year with Mavis Hale being the only 'newby'! Both the Christmas and New Year lunches were well attended, as was the Draw night in December. The Christmas Bazaar was held on a very wet day which probably deterred folk from stepping out, but a goodly sum was still raised and thanks to those who helped with preparations and running stalls etc on the day.
This side of Christmas also saw the annual jaunt to Okehampton take place. The weather was fantastic, none of the fog that lingered for most of the week around here! With lots of activities to choose from no one could complain of being bored, and with plenty of food on offer, no one could complain of being hungry either!! As usual on the last evening before home those that wished displayed their creations for the rest of us to marvel at, and maybe gain inspiration from for next years trip! Alan is already taking names for that so speak to him if you want to know more about it.
Events to look forward to for the Spring include a Race Night and Supper on 4th March, and the Easter Monday lunch on 17th April. Get your names down for these quickly before spaces run out! This year we will already be out on the Green over the Easter weekend, hopefully the weather will warm up before then! You will see that Registration evening is on Friday 7th April, come along armed with your membership form, payment, diary and any friends you think might be interested in bowling! Also, if you have any hidden talents that you think you could offer to the club, suggestions for fundraising ideas, or even any 'constructive' criticism on the way things are done, please make your committee aware of them!
We have recently welcomed more new members to our club, bucking the trend of many other clubs in the country! It is a sport that can be enjoyed at any level, be it a gentle 'roll-up' among friends, matches against other local rivalries or for the more competitive bowlers participating in club, county and national competitions! It is also a sport that is accessible to those less able in our community, even if they can't access the bowling green outdoors the opportunity is there throughout the year to continue playing short mat bowls. Indeed our friends from Age UK make use of our facilities on Wednesday afternoons both inside and outside, and during the summer all the short mats will be rolled out from 10am Wednesday mornings for those members that wish to keep their short mat skills honed!
We now turn our attention to the bowling activities this season, which have proved to be a bit of a roller-coaster ride for all our teams! The Canaries held top spot in the West Ox league over Christmas and in to the New Year, a first for a Witney Town team! The wheels fell off however in their local derby against the Woolies thereby handing the lead over to Nor-Lye by 1 point, after they took all 8 points against the Rams! With mixed results coming in for all teams, the Canaries hold 2nd place, the Rams are lurking 3 places from the bottom and the Woolies are holding a mid table position! Let's hope all three teams can put in strong performances for the rest of the season to further improve their league standing!
In the Short Mat Tens competition on Sunday mornings, the Reds are leading the way with a few matches still to play, Witney Mills are hot on their heels.
The Wednesday morning Open league has thrown up some interesting results, with no single team dominating; last season’s winners Nor-Lye have been turned over 3 times by Witney Town teams so it’s all to play for! The Friday Smile 'rinks' league has been won by the Ceebees of Caroline, Brian, Roy and Bob T., well done to them. A triples and pairs league is about to get under way so good luck to all involved!
In the Bob Edwards Trophy the first two matches against Carterton and West Witney didn't go well, but the game against Abingdon saw a victory for WT. With just one more fixture to play versus West Oxford let's hope Town can secure a few more points on the board! We have fared better in the City and County Tens competition, reaching the semi-finals for the second year running! Let's see if we can go one step further this year and make it into the final. Our team has also reached the semi-final of the North Oxford league at Chipping Norton, here's hoping for success there too!!
We have played Friendlies in both short mat and long mat this winter, with mixed fortunes. In some cases it has been a struggle to field a team. If we want these fixtures to continue next winter season please show your support by signing up on the team sheets. Failure to do so will see these games disappear from our schedule, meaning loss of income for the club and loss of contact with some of our near neighbour clubs during the winter!
You will of course be aware that Corinna is now running Slimming World classes throughout the day on Thursdays. Measures are in hand to ensure both privacy for her and her clientele during the outdoor season, whilst allowing access to the changing rooms and bar for our members. It would be appreciated if noise could be kept to a minimum whilst inside the pavilion to avoid unnecessary disturbance to her classes, thank you!
Once we go outdoors the Green will be open as usual from 10:30am from Monday to Friday, and from 10am at weekends. If for any reason the Green has to be closed please respect this and refrain from using it until advised otherwise! This may be due to inclement weather, or because the greenkeeper needs to do some maintenance work on the Green!
You will soon be receiving your fixture book for the summer season, but please note that additional information on hall bookings will be displayed on the calendar by the kitchen door. Please check it regularly as it would be appreciated if visits to the pavilion could be minimised when private parties are taking place.
And finally, Happy Bowling both indoors and out, when we get there, and don't forget to find those waterproofs out of storage, just in case!!
Forthcoming events:- Saturday 12th November 10am-2pm Christmas Bazaar
Saturday 12 November 7pm Bingo and Supper
Sunday 27th November WTBC AGM. 3pm
Friday 9th December Spartan Rangers 6:30pm
Friday 16th December Christmas Draw Night 6:30pm
Sunday 18th December Christmas Lunch 12:30pm
The clocks have gone back, the nights are drawing in, the Green has been put to bed, therefore the indoor bowling season is upon us! For some this means long mat, for others short mat and for quite a few it's a mixture of both! Whichever form you play it takes a bit of getting used to after grass, but at least the waterproofs can be packed away until next April.
As well as the bowling you will note that November and December have quite a lot going on by way of social activities. Jan Cameron is organising the Christmas Bazaar on 12th November and would welcome offers of help both with donations for the tombola, cake and other stalls, and on the day to run these stalls too. This event has been a very good fundraiser for us in the last couple of years, so let's make it another successful one this year! On the same evening there will be another opportunity to practise your Bingo skills, with supper included. In December we welcome our friends from Spartan Rangers for their Christmas Jumper social, get your names up for this, once again supper will be included. The following week sees the Big Christmas Draw, so come along to hopefully win some prizes, providing of course that you've bought lots of numbers in the preceding weeks!! Donations for this will also be gratefully received in the next few weeks. The final fling before Christmas will be the Lunch on 18th December, the list will soon be up so get your names on it to be in it!!
The other significant date in November is Sunday 27th, when the club holds its AGM. This is when the club's Management committee is elected for the next year. If you feel you have something to offer your club please come along and show your support. We are a friendly and welcoming club with lots going on, extra helping hands will spread the workload and avoid 'burnout' of the few!
A reminder that any issues you wish to be put on the AGM Agenda for discussion should be submitted in writing no later than one week prior to the meeting. This is your meeting and you are free to have your say on how the club is to be run and who should be running it.
You will have noticed that the pavilion is being well used these days for events other than bowling! This is great news for the club, it means we are fulfilling the requirements for the WODC Community Facilities Grant, which we received to help with completion of the building project. The funds raised from these outside bookings have enabled the club to start repaying its outstanding loans. From the beginning of November Slimming World will extend their hiring of the pavilion on every Thursday from 8:30am till 9:30pm. It means there will be no facility on these days for short mat bowling, but Corrina is happy for members to access changing rooms if required. Concern has been expressed about how summer bowls activities will be affected, but the committee is planning ahead to alleviate any problems, and Corrina will also be flexible with her classes to accommodate club matches. We would ask for members to be considerate of any outside bookings taking place, and only request access if absolutely necessary please.
Now we turn our attention to the bowling activities, and what a mixed up start to the short mat season it's been! Most of the Canaries team went off in search of some late summer sunshine to Portugal, more on that later. The Rams first match at Burford proved pointless for them, also the Woolies could only pick up 2 points from Hanborough Herons. The following week saw the first 'in house' clash and it was the Woolies who, for the first time ever came out with all 8 points against the Rams in what was a very close match!
Since then the Rams have gained a 6-2 victory over Witney Mills Weavers, but gone down 0-8 to Hanborough Herons. The Woolies meantime came out 7-1 victors over Charlbury, but could only snatch 2 points up at Witney Mills.
When the Canaries finally got started it was against Witney Mills Millers, whose tricky mats claimed all 8 points for the home side. But the Canaries came back strongly the following week to thrash Hanborough Harriers, previously unbeaten, 8-0! With the Woolies making such a positive start, who knows how the league will pan out this year, but here's hoping all 3 teams can keep putting up some strong performances.
The Witney Town Short mat Tens competition is up and running on Sunday mornings. Unfortunately there are only 4 teams entered this year and it's an all Witney shoot-out! The first match saw the club's Blues team beat Witney Mills by the narrowest of margins.
The “Smile” League this year has moved to Friday evenings, but has still been well supported with 8 teams competing. With a few new team variations on the scene it should prove quite a contest!
On the long mat front, we took a team to play at Chipping Norton on their new indoor carpet, and came away with a victory, winning on 3 rinks and drawing on the other, well done all! Our team in the North Oxon league, also played at Chippy and recorded a win in their first game of the season. The first of 2 fixtures at Banbury saw us lose overall by just 1 shot, although we did win on 4 of the 6 rinks! With more fixtures coming up and new faces taking to the long mat it should set us up well in this indoor form of the game.
As with any of our fixtures we need you to sign up on the match sheets to make selection easier for the captain, so please check your diaries and support when you can! Most of you will have picked up your very smart winter fixture booklet by now, we have Bill Stewart to thank for producing these, and getting a good on-line deal for printing them!
We would like to thank to Bob Williams for constructing our new, enlarged bookcase. Not only does it give us a much better display area for books, puzzles, etc. it also stops people banging their heads on the Trophy cabinet above!
As I mentioned earlier some club members and friends ventured to Vilamoura in Portugal on an organised bowls tour over 2 weeks. It was very warm on arrival and the welcome we received at all of the clubs was also very warm! In the second week some of the group played in a bowls tournament and finished in second place, so well done to Brian, Caroline, Alan and Lyn! Would you be interested in joining another tour next year? Alan and Lyn would love to hear from you!
On the subject of holidays, rooms are still available at The Manor Hotel, Okehampton in January 2017. This is a great place to unwind, an opportunity to try different art and craft activities, or play a variety of sports. You can choose to do as much or as little as you wish, and the food is plentiful too! Speak to Alan for more information about this break as soon as possible if interested.
….and finally. The Committee wish all of you and all your loved ones a wonderful time over the coming festive season.
Potters Resort January 2017
A trip by coach is being organised to see some of the World Indoor Bowls Championships by Bob Scholes of City and County Bowls Club in Oxford. The dates are 13th to 15th January at a cost £218 per person. Please contact Opal Travel on 01983 404381 for more details.
Spartan Rangers ‘Footballing Stars’ Friday 26th June 6:30pm
Race Night and Supper Sat 16th July 7pm
The ‘41 Club’ bowls event with 2 course hot supper, Tues 19th July 6:15pm
Well the summer season is in full flow and our Green is seeing constant activity as the Friendly and League fixtures get under way. We also have a large number of Club and County Competitions being played so getting rink space could be tricky. If you need to book a rink for your Competition, then do it as soon as possible in the folder in the pavilion. Try to arrange your matches sooner rather than later in each round just in case inclement weather gets in the way! For those new to the competition scene please seek advice from an experienced bowler on how to go about organising matches, especially if you are the Challenger!
The Men’s League season started with a ‘walkover’ in the first round of the League Cup competition. The second round brought them face to face with the somewhat aggressive bowling style of Headington ‘A’! Although they battled hard our chaps were defeated on all four rinks. However as they strive for better things in Division two, that is a style of play they may well encounter more often. With the League Cup run over they embarked on the rest of the league season with a home fixture against Adderbury. This resulted in a closely contested 1-shot victory and a 4-2 points win for WT! Next up was Charlbury, which proved to be a very hard slog on a very heavy green, no change there then! After an uphill struggle our boys pulled back to finish 9 shots off the pace to bring home just the 1 point. Game three was at home to Banbury Chestnuts and it turned out to be a game worth waiting for! All four rinks put in a sterling performance to give WT a convincing 6-0 win! After a stand-down week the men had to rally themselves to play two fixtures in three days. Firstly a trip to Adderbury, on a very warm and sultry evening. However the clouds darkened and after playing only 12 ends the rain dropped by the bucket full, the green flooded and the captains had to be content with a 3-3 draw. Two days later it was up to near neighbours West Witney. Some excellent bowling on both sides brought a close finish but in the end WT came out with yet another victory of 3.5-2.5. Keep an eye on the league table to see how our chaps are doing, and it’s always good to have supporters along to cheer them on! There’s plenty more bowling to come in this league, good luck WT!!
West OxfordshireLadies League: The Ladies season got under way with a home fixture with West Witney. It was very cold but after a slow start they came back into things and managed to win two of the three rinks. Unfortunately the shots didn’t add up in our favour so it was 4-6 to West. Game two saw them travel to a damp and dismal Carterton /Burford game and it turned out to be a nail biter of a game, with the result coming down to the last wood. However this time fortune favoured our Witney ladies and they achieved a 7-3 victory! A home fixture versus Banbury Central proved a tough one for our ladies, but they still came out with 2 points on another chilly evening. Next up was a trip to Woodstock, where the green is notoriously heavy, and this time was no exception! The girls battled hard and bowled harder, and their efforts were rewarded with a 6-4 win, and a few aching shoulders! Once again you can follow their progress via the website, and supporters are very welcome. In this year’s County Top Club competition the ladies beat a strong Banbury Chestnuts/Middle Barton side in the first round. They then took a slightly rearranged team to Shiplake who proved a bit too strong for them on the day.
West Ox Mixed Triples League: This looks like another interesting season with the addition of Banbury Chestnuts into the Competition. First match for last years league winners the Aces was a tough one and they only just managed to scrape an 8-4 home win against a lively Burford side. Chestnuts were Aces next visiting opponents but they couldn’t keep pace and the Aces ran out 10-2 winners. Game three for the Aces saw them cruise to a crushing 12-0 home win over Bloxham to put them on top of the League. Aces latest fixture was at home to Middle Barton who are a force to be reckoned with, however after some excellent bowling on both sides it was the Aces who came out on top, winning 8-4! It has been a different picture for our Blues team who failed by just one shot overall at home against Charlbury and lost out by 3-9. Game two proved a more satisfying affair with a convincing 10-2 win away to Banbury Chestnuts. Game three was at home to Chipping Norton, but it was a disappointing 2-10 defeat. Don’t forget you can regularly track the results and positions of all our League teams and Competitions on the website.
The Halls Cup. This event has been well supported this year with 14 teams entering, so Friday evenings should provide us with some interesting matches. Come along to show your support, and let’s hope there are no ‘domestics’ on the green!
Plant Sale: Thank you to Jan, Brian, Margaret and Irene, who stood for nearly 5 hours on a very cold and damp morning, running the plant sale outside Waitrose. Despite the awful weather the sale was successful; raising more than the previous year.
We would like to give a warm welcome to all new members joining us this season. Glyn and Kevin Middleton are no strangers to a bowls rink but have been out of bowling action for a number of years. Alan and Penny Powell are new to the sport and both are showing great potential. Many Clubs are experiencing a decline in numbers so it’s great news that WT is bucking the trend! If you know someone who might be interested in giving bowls a go, bring them along to have a try.
TEA ROTA There is a noticeable lack of names going down on the Tea Rota. No staff in the kitchen could well mean no post-match tea! In some clubs this has already happened, but at WT both our home and visiting bowlers seem to enjoy sitting down after the game to share in the light suppers that we are proud to offer. No shopping is required, just a bit of simple preparation of sandwiches or salads. Please help to spread the load by filling in a vacant slot on the Rota outside the club kitchen door. If you want more information about what’s involved please speak to Caroline or Lyn. The more members that help, the less often you’ll have to do it!
The initial early season enthusiasm for signing up for matches seems to be dwindling, and we’re barely half way through! Please keep filling up the match sheets and show your support for your club. We have the Spartan Rangers footballers joining us for their annual summer ‘bowls bash’ evening on 26th June. On the 19th July we welcome members and friends of the ’41 Club’ to enjoy an evening of integrated bowling with our members, followed by a 2 course meal. New friends, new members maybe, let’s make them welcome with a good turnout please.
In a few weeks some club members and friends will head off to Weston-Super-Mare for their annual bowls tour. We wish them safe travels, fine weather and successful bowling! Keep an eye on the ‘social’ notice board for details of other organised trips and holidays. Our thanks go to those who take the time to prepare and plan these events.
You will probably be aware that our pavilion is being used more frequently now for non-bowling activities. As has been said before these ‘outside’ bookings are a valuable source of revenue for the club. Please adhere to the committee’s request not to enter the building during a private hire session. If it is necessary then please ask the user’s permission first. In particular do not enter the building on Thursday mornings until the Slimming World session ends at 11.30am.
Events to be held in April -- May 2016
Competitions Draw Night Friday April 29th
Club Open Day Saturday April 30th
“BINGO” and Supper night Saturday April 30th 7pm
Spring Bank Holiday Lunch Monday 30th May 12:30
The clocks have jumped forward bringing lighter evenings, but we're still waiting for those warmer temperatures to remind us that summer isn't far away! It was lovely to see so many of you signing on at Registration evening and we hope that others will soon follow.We have a very full programme of matches this season, including Men's and Ladies league, West Ox Triples league, club triples and competitions, and of course lots of Friendly fixtures. There really is something for everyone so watch the boards, read your fixture book and sign up on the match sheets in plenty of time. The club values your support and we want everyone to enjoy the facilities we have to offer!
Still fresh in our mind is the long but successful winter season we've had. We retained the Bob Edwards Trophy, a long mat competition played at the Carterton Indoor club, and for the first time we made it through to the semi finals of the City and County Tens competition in Oxford. Unfortunately we came up against the eventual winners, Carterton but we'll be back for another go next season! In the North Oxon League played at Chipping Norton we narrowly missed out on another semi final place, but well bowled to all concerned.
On the Short Mat scene all our league teams finished well. The Rams came in a creditable third place, behind Witney Mills Weavers who knocked Nor Lye off the top spot this year. The Canaries failed to overhaul the Rams with a couple of poor results at the end of the season, but finished fourth. As for the Woolies, they came with a late surge, and on the last end of the final match they pulled off a narrow victory over Charlbury Willows to lift them to their best ever finish, and relegate the Willows to bottom slot!
The Judyaitch team, comprising Brian and Wendy Kent and Fred and Judy Hickman won the SMILE Rinks league, making it the third different team to win the Trophy in three years. The SMILE Triples league was won by Alan, Mike and Richard, and Margaret and Tim retained the pairs title. We also had one triples team progress to the West Oxon Triples Competition finals, which this year was won by a team from Charlbury.
For those members wishing to continue playing short mat throughout the summer, the mats will be rolled out on Wednesday mornings to accommodate this. The charge will be £2 per person, to include a drink. Age UK will be using them in the afternoon as usual.
As for the outdoor season, it will be a challenging summer for our men as they step up to Division Two this year. With new teams to face up to they'll be hoping for a strong start when they step onto the Green! Our ladies will also face new opponents in their league as Woodstock and Kidlington ladies have combined forces this season. All the fixtures are in your book so please come and show your support whenever possible, it really helps to lift the teams! We wish all players much success in their respective leagues, and let's hope for some excellent bowling and great results!
The “West Ox Mixed Triples League” sees a new fixture this year with the addition of Banbury Chestnuts. No doubt they will bring some strong opposition to our two teams the “Aces” and “Blues” who have dominated this league for the past two seasons. Both our teams will however be striving to keep it that way!
The Monday Open Triples League has become a strongly contested affair and this year looks to be no different, with more local clubs taking part.
The Tuesday Triples League is an 'in house' version, but just as hotly contested by our own club members! These leagues need your support to enable them to run so please sign up now, if you haven't done already!
This season our club plays host to some top county fixtures. The first of these is on May 17th when we welcome the ladies from Oxfordshire as they play Gloucestershire ladies, with a 2pm start. On Sunday 12th June the County under 25's men play their singles competition throughout the day. Sunday 31st July sees us host the “Bradshaw Cup”, a County Men’s Competition when representatives from the 'city' and 'country' clubs play each other, start time 2pm. Finally on Tuesday 9th August Oxfordshire Men take on Bristol City & County BA in a County Friendly fixture at 2pm.
So as you can see there's a lot going on this summer whether it's to play in or to watch. Together with our own Club Competitions it will be a busy scene on the green. Don't forget, the Draw for these club comps will be from 6pm on Friday April 29th. If you haven't already entered it's not too late, contact Ian Hale as he's this year's competition secretary.
Once again this year we will be holding a fund raising Plant Sale on Wednesday May 18th. This will be held outside Waitrose with a 9am start. We do need your support in the supply of young plants to sell. A number of green fingered members have already done a lot of preparation work but any additional plants of all varieties would be greatly received. There is a list on the Notice Board by the “Bar”, if you can help in any way please put your name down. Jan Cameron is coordinating this project, which last year raised over £150 for the Club, and is an essential part of fundraising which helps keep our club thriving.
If you have any new ideas for boosting funds or suggestions for social events your committee would love to hear about them, so please don't be shy!
The Witney Town Pavilion has hosted a number of private bookings over the winter period and it can be hired for such events during the summer when available. If you know of anyone planning a party or special function and looking for a venue, get them to look us up on our website and contact Caroline Bloomfield to arrange a viewing.
The winter season is flying by and before we know it the summer season will be upon us. By the time the next issue of the Ram comes out it will be close to the club's Registration evening. Let's hope that the weather remembers to change season too and gives us a pleasantly warm and fine few months!
However, there is still plenty of indoor activity going on. Our 3 short mat league teams have been in action since early January, with mixed fortunes. Whilst the Rams have gained ground in the league with some very good results, the Woolies have seen points slip away in the latter stages of matches, and now find themselves in a less favourable position! The Canaries have had some close finishes also and are now just behind the Rams. There's still lots to play for though and it's close at the top of the league this year with Witney Mills Weavers pushing hot on the heels of North Leigh Millers.
In the Wednesday Open triples league North Leigh are leading the field by some way. So far no one has been able to overcome them though a couple of teams have come close! It still offers competitive and enjoyable bowling for all concerned. The SMILE fours league is reaching its conclusion in the next few weeks and it's going to be close at the top! You will see on the notice board that this will be followed by a triples and pairs competition. Get your teams signed up quickly and let's enjoy some good friendly fun to round off the winter season!
As far as our indoor bowling goes we've had mixed fortunes there as well. We've made good progress in the Bob Edwards Trophy matches, winning against West Witney and Witney Mills. There are still 3 more to play so here's hoping we can put in a good show and maybe retain the trophy that we won for the first time last year! On the Friendly scene we didn't do too well up at City and County in January but took 6 triples to Banbury recently and came away with a comfortable victory!
Our social events have been very well supported with over 90 members and friends sitting down to enjoy an early Christmas lunch in December. Then again in January we had 84 people for our 'Just After New Year' lunch. Next on the agenda is a Bingo evening with supper, there are already a good number signed up for that. Following on in March will be the ever popular Race Night and supper, so keep an eye on the notice board for details! Once again this year we will be having an Easter Monday lunch on March 28th, menu and details to follow shortly. If you have any suggestions for other social events you would like us to explore please speak to Alan or drop a line to the committee.
Another 'social' opportunity that we've enjoyed recently is the annual trip to Okehampton. This year 32 club members and friends travelled there for 5 days of wet and windy weather, but lots of fun and friendship too! Thanks again to Alan for organising this trip which has now established itself in the club calendar. The dates for next year are Jan 22nd - 27th, speak to Alan for more information.
At the end of February Deanna has arranged our winter bowls tour to Bournemouth. We will play 3 games of indoor bowls over the weekend there and then stop off at Atherley club on the way home for a match and a meal. Please speak to Deanna as soon as possible if interested in joining this trip. Deanna is also responsible for planning the club's summer tour, this year to Weston-Super-Mare. Again speak to her for more information.
As you will probably have realised the pavilion has played host to a number of 'outside' bookings recently. These have ranged from children's birthday parties with bouncy castles, discos etc to luncheons and anniversary celebrations. All have been successful in raising funds for the club and also in gaining us a profile within the local community. Now people know where we are and what we have to offer! Many of the bookings have come from 'word of mouth' contacts, and the feedback we've received has all been positive. This is good news and we hope the steady stream of enquiries will lead to further bookings and income for the club to sustain us well into the future!
Just as a reminder though, please be considerate to other users of the pavilion, especially if they are not club members. If you need to access the changing rooms whilst the hall is being used for a private function, do ask if it's OK to do so first rather than just 'gate-crash'!! The club needs this income and we don't want to alienate visitors.
It has been noticed that on several occasions the heating thermostat in the pavilion has been set either very high or very low. Please note that the heating comes on for about 2 hours early in the morning and then not again until 4:30pm. If it's turned up in the day and left there when the hall isn't being used in the evening that's an awful lot of wasted energy, i.e. money! On the other hand if it's turned down or off in the daytime it means that come the evening when in use, or the next morning users will be greeted by a chilly blast from the inside! Please leave the setting at 16-17 degrees, this seems to keep the hall at a reasonably comfortable temperature for most people, thank you.
Before the outdoor season takes off cast your mind forward to October this year for a continued outdoor bowling opportunity! For the first time in several years an overseas tour is being planned to Vilamoura in Portugal. It will consist of 4 games of bowls in the first week, followed by an optional second week to either relax or take part in the Vilamoura Bowls Club's Autumn Festival tournament. Accommodation will be in the Ampalius hotel close to the beach and marina, and can be either bed and breakfast or half board option. Some of us have stayed in this hotel several times before and found it to be comfortable and convenient for local amenities. If you are interested in joining this trip please speak to Alan or Lyn for further information as soon as possible.
Another opportunity to jet off to some warmer climes is being planned for Spring 2017. Mike Jones would like to take a party to Madeira for its renowned Flower Festival. More details will follow!
The club has been donated a gazebo that can be hired out to members. It is 3m square by 2.5m high and has side panels included. Details can be found on the notice board so if you're planning an outdoor event and want to play safe this might be a good option!
There are still short mat friendly fixtures coming up in the next few weeks so sign up if you can. Before long it will be outdoor games, wet weather gear etc so make the most of the great indoors while you can!!
For all you green fingered folk out there it's time to start sowing and growing in preparation for the club's Plant sale on Thursday 18th May in the Woolgate Centre. Plants and helpers on the day will be much appreciated by Jan Cameron who is coordinating this event!
For all those waiting, a fresh batch of marmalade is on the way, watch the bar area carefully!!
Newsletter - June 2015
Friday 19th June at 6.30pm - Spartan Rangers Social Evening
Sunday 19th July at 2.00pm - Family Fun Day:
WITNEY TOWN PAVILION CELEBRATION! Thursday May 21st saw us play a prestigious match against “Bowls England”. Their President, Marcia Dunstone brought a team representing 15 English counties to celebrate, albeit belatedly, the completion of our new Pavilion. We were narrowly defeated by 1 shot overall on what was an exciting and pleasantly warm day! They were very impressed with our new facilities and especially the playing of our Green (the best they had played on this season). Compliments were also given for the terrific catering we provided. Thanks to all those who helped throughout the day to ensure no one went home hungry!! It proved to be a day to remember and certainly one to be proud of.
Our outdoor season is now well under way and at last it seems the weather is playing ball. It has been pretty chilly out there on the green in recent weeks, so now we hope to be able to lose a few layers and enjoy some sunshine. In the friendly fixtures we have recorded two wins against Little Compton and also come out on top against Headington, Oxford City & County and Adderbury. However, we have suffered losses to a very strong Banbury Borough squad, and were narrowly defeated by West Witney and Witney Mills.
In the Men’s League we were knocked out of the League Cup by last years Semi Finalists South Oxford. However we showed good spirit in that game and went on a winning streak of league fixtures starting with a 6-0 victory away at Chipping Norton, followed by a 4-2 win against City & County “B” and another 6-0 win away at Chadlington. Next up was an exciting rematch with Chipping Norton, where we scraped home with a 1 shot overall win and 4-2 on points before losing our unbeaten record at Banbury Chestnuts with a 2-4 defeat. This still keeps us 4 points clear at the top of Division 3 of the Oxford & District League but there are 10 more tough games to play. Nevertheless it’s a very satisfying start to the season for the men’s team.
The Ladies League began with a disappointing 2-8 defeat away to local rivals West Witney. The team got back on track with a 8-2 win over Carterton/Burford but then went down 0-10 to a very strong Banbury Central squad. Woodstock ladies have had to withdraw from the league this season due to insufficient bowlers, however they have decided to play this years fixtures as friendly games of 3 triples. It is hoped that by next year they will have more ladies playing and normal service will be resumed!
The WEST OX Mixed Triples season got under way for the “Aces” with a 10-2 win at Burford, only narrowly losing on 1 rink on the last end. However, they made no mistake when they travelled to Bloxham for their next fixture and came away with a 12-0 win. Since then they have played away at Middle Barton where they secured another 8-4 victory, all of which has given them a great start to their Westox schedule! The “Blues” got their season under way with an away fixture against a strong Chipping Norton side and were looking at a possible 12-0 defeat with four ends to go. Despite a valiant fight back, five shots lost in the final end cost them the match and they finished up losing 3-9. Their next opponents were at Charlbury where the Blues won 10-2.
There are quite a few new faces down at the Club, most of them joining us completely new to bowling. Some of these new members have joined us via Age UK, others came along to our Open Day earlier in the season. We offer them a warm welcome to our friendly club and hope they soon feel a part of everything that’s going on. It has been wonderful to see that many of our recent Saturday and Sunday matches have consisted of entirely different squads, in other words anything up to 44 bowlers have played each weekend. Let’s not see that trend evaporate , there are still plenty of fixtures coming up through to September, so please keep signing up on the match sheets!! At a time when many small village Clubs struggle to recruit and fulfil fixtures, Witney Town is a growing club and certainly serving our town extremely well. The Monday and Tuesday Triples Leagues also offer a good quality of competitive bowling and many of the visiting teams from other Clubs really appreciate this, as do our own members. It is also a time to socialise and get to know each other.
Talking of The Social Scene,the recent “Race Night” event proved another great success with well over 70 people in attendance. It was nice to see many of our new members joining in at this function. Earlier in the day we held a “Reunion Event” to bring together past members who have played for the Club over recent years. It was great to see so many familiar faces and they certainly enjoyed seeing our “New” Pavilion, as well as seeing each other. Our thanks go to Jan Cameron for coordinating this. Jan together with Liz Zinnbauer organised a “Plant Sale” outside Waitrose on May 20th which proved to be an astounding success. Our thanks go to all those members who provided plants and to those who manned the stall. More recently we held another Bingo Evening and supper. It was well attended and despite some very ‘un-politically correct’ calling, a good time was had by all!
The Club Competitions have been drawn and we urge those competing to get their games in early. It is all so easy to delay them, and then find you have to fit in several games in a few days. Do not forget to book your “rink” needs in advance to avoid any problems. Score cards are available in a Slot to the left of the Bar. All players should be aware that they will need to have played two Home games and One away Game’ to play at quarterfinal level, so get your names down for some friendly fixtures in the coming weeks to avoid any issues.
County News: Brian Bloomfield, Mike Jones, Paul Demczak and Mel Cameron have all regularly featured in this season’s County Friendly fixtures. Brian and Paul have also progressed into the Oxon “Home Counties League” team. These selections put the Club well and truly on the County map. Let’s not forget the Ladies County Selections with Caroline Bloomfield, Yvonne Hodkinson, Lynda Cooper and Phil Houlihan representing our Club. Caroline has also gone on to play in the ladies top competition, “The John Trophy”. Congratulations all round!!
Age UK is continuing to bring people to play short mat bowls in the pavilion on Wed afternoons. They will have a break during August but then will return for the autumn season. It would be helpful if more volunteers came forward to support this venture. The mats are put in place for them and their own volunteers usually roll them up at the end of the session, so we are looking for people to be around to make the teas and tidy up afterwards please. They meet between 1-30 and 3-30 pm so if you can help please contact Jan Cameron as soon as possible.
Don’t forget to keep up to date with what’s happening at the club via the website, also make sure you keep an eye on the notice boards in the pavilion.
Newsletter - April 2015
Easter Bonnet Lunch – Monday 6th April at 12.30 for 1.00pm
Registration Evening – Friday 10th April from 6.30pm
Race Night & Supper – Saturday 9th May at 7.00pm
The Outdoor Season is nearly upon us and one wonders how the winter season has flown by so quickly. We have certainly been able to put our new facility to good use, with Lunches, Race Nights, and Bingo Nights, all of which are vital in keeping the Club alive and kicking. These fundraising activities will also help us to meet our financial commitments in the years to come. Many positive comments were received from the local branch of the RNLI recently when they used our pavilion for their annual Quiz night. We hope other local groups and organisations will also be able to make good use of these facilities in the future as this again will be a useful source of income for the club. This year for the first time we hosted the West Oxon Short Mat League end of season Triples Competition, now in its 8th year! A record number of 28 teams entered which meant that some had to play in a preliminary round. The semi-finals were contested by 3 teams from North Leigh and 1 from Witney Mills, and the eventual winners were the NOR-LYE BOYS, comprising Brian Smith, Dave Gessey and Neil Pratley, well done chaps!!
Indoor bowling was based around two important matches in the Bob Edwards Trophy at Carterton. First up was Abingdon, much fancied to win the Trophy this year, but despite only winning on 1 rink out of 4 Witney Town managed an overall victory by 1 shot! This gave us a 10-6 win and the possibility of clinching the Trophy if we could get at least 13 points from our last fixture. This was against West Oxford and we achieved our goal by taking 14 points, giving us a final total of 52, beating Abingdon by 2 points! So huge congratulations to our bowlers for winning four of our five games and bringing home the first Silverware of 2015 to adorn our new Pavilion. Let’s hope the trend continues.
Meanwhile, in the City and County 10’s Competition we continued our success beating Oxford Masonic by 4 points to 1, putting us in the top half of the table with one game to play. Another strong performance gained us a 3-2 victory over Abingdon taking us into 2nd place behind Oxford City & County Bowls Club. This is our best ever placing in this competition, well done team!
Short Mat forms the main part of our winter activities, with the Wednesday Open League, the County League and our own SMILE Leagues providing most of the action.
In the Open League the strong North Leigh team prevailed and are the first winners of the David Cooper Short Mat Cup; many congratulations to Les Neil and Barry.
On the County League scene the big surprise has been the revival of the “Rams”, who at the start of the year were propping up the Division with only 2 wins out of 9 and just 19 points. They went on to win 8 of their remaining 11 matches to finish in 6th place with a creditable 82 points. Meanwhile the Woolies, despite having a good start to the season, fell away to finish bottom of the division with 33 points. The Canaries also faded, losing their way in the second half of the season after a promising start and finished in 9th place with 53 points.
The SMILE rinks league has proved very popular and the “Sapphires” of Tim, Margaret, Jan and Mel raced away to win it with 27 points from 14 games. The battle for second and third places was vigorously contested, with Marys Little Lambs taking 2nd place with 18 points and the Canaries in third with 16 points. The SMILE Triples and Pairs leagues are now under way to take us through to the very end of the winter season.
Club activities Some of our members have been travelling in recent weeks to Okehampton in January and a weekend Bowls Tour to Bournemouth at the end of February. These holidays only happen due to the hard work put in by both Deanna Radband and Alan Scholan. Our thanks go to them both for making it all happen. Anyone still wishing to go on the Club’s summer tour to Bournemouth please speak to Deanna Radband very soon as places are extremely limited!!
The Easter lunch is on Monday 6th April where we hope fabulous bonnets on both men and women will be on display once again! Grateful thanks to all those who have donated a wonderful array of Easter Eggs for the Prize Draw on that day.
The ever popular Race Night & Supper is returning on Saturday 9th May to keep the momentum going; watch the notice boards for the details.
Registration Evening is coming up fast, on Friday 10th April, 6-30pm onwards. You should have received the paperwork by email or post, – if not please contact Lyn on 01993 703433. Details of annual subscriptions, summer leagues and club competitions are included. On the night you will receive your copy of the fixture book and also be asked to sign up for ‘tea duty’ during the season, so please come prepared with your chequebook and diary at the ready!!
Match sheets are already appearing on the notice boards in the pavilion. Please make sure to put your names down in good time to help the selection process. The first game is on Sunday April 12th at home to Little Compton. Let’s keep fingers crossed that the weather will be kind to us throughout the season, and that our ‘wets’ can stay dry!! The respective Men’s and Ladies Captains will be keen to know who wants to be involved in the Men’s County League and the Ladies West Oxfordshire League, so do sign up on those lists if you’d like to be considered for the teams. Other competitive matches will be in the West Oxon Mixed Triples League where we have 2 teams participating, The Aces and The Blues. Watch the notice boards for further information on these games. Of course there will also be the Monday and Tuesday Triples Leagues, don’t forget to sign up for those as soon as possible, and enter the club competitions too!
The Age UK Short mat sessions will be continuing through the summer on a Wednesday afternoon and it is vital that we have a Club member in attendance. If you can spare a couple of hours (1.30pm – 3.30pm) please contact Jan Cameron. There will also be a Short Mat session on Wednesday mornings for those members wishing to play indoors over the summer.
Thanks to those who attended the EGM on 29th March. The Clubs accounts to 30th September 2014 were presented and information given regarding the current financial situation. Discussion took place about having ‘WITNEY TOWN PAVILION’ signage on the outside gable end of the building. It was agreed the club could not pay for this however a proposal was made that members may ‘sponsor’ a letter. Please speak to Alan Scholan for further information.
Don’t forget to look at the club’s website, it has lots of information about our activities, including the summer fixtures. The address is at the top of the newsletter.