If you’re looking to take a holiday bowling in Torquay with friends or your club you’ll be in good hands. Sarah Vinnicombe has been resident Bowls Co-ordinator at TLH Leisure Resort since 2007. Her role involves organising the smooth running of the Bowling tournaments and breaks that take place throughout the year at the Torquay Hotel group. She also takes care of organising fixtures for visiting touring sides. Continue reading
I had only been bowling for a couple of weeks when some bright spark suggested that I take part in a friendly game at the club one day. So onto the green I trooped with my new bowls and new white bowling skirt and top. I was quite proud to have been asked to play and very much in awe of the etiquette and other players. It was 1982.
With a view to promote this pastime, which to me should be called a SPORT, a phoenix is arising from the ashes of complacency and the phoenix’s name is the Bowls Development Alliance.
It is with pleasure that I attended the Men’s annual presentation for Bowls England.
What a lovely evening with everyone shedding the grey and white uniform and dressing up in their evening attire. And I don’t mean pyjamas or nighties, it means our glad rags that possibly only come out once or twice a year.
We all met for pre dinner drinks in the Rowley Suite of the Walker Stadium, Leicester. The Rowley suite is named after George Arthur Rowley, (21 April 1926 – 19 December 2002), an English footballer nicknamed ‘The Gunner’ because of his explosive left-foot shot. He holds the record for the greatest number of career goals in English football league history, and indeed English football as a whole, scoring 434 from 619 league games.
History lesson over – now I can tell you about the evening.
It is so nice to meet up socially with people that you have worked closely with over the previous season and who have become chums via Facebook and other media channels. You barely recognise them minus their bowling gear off, and with their posh suits and frocks on. It was non-stop chatter all evening.
The meal was great, I liked it anyway – belly pork, slow roasted so it was good and crispy, served with mash and black pudding with cabbage on the side.Yummy, you’d either love it or hate it. I liked it. Followed by golden syrup tart with ice cream – lush – and then coffee.
The presentations went wonderfully well, with the evening culminating in a speech from John Bell, who writes a column in Bowls International Magazine – he is a really funny guy and his description of going out to the Commonwealth Games with the team, the flight, the bugs and the accommodation, was hilarious.
At the end of the presentations a special gift was given to all who were involved with our Commonwealth Games team. It was nice to see that they were thanked for taking on board a young team and supporting them far from home in conditions that were, some say, a little fraught. Well done.
But if you think that was the end of it you are mistaken. I love to chat and of course did the rounds of the tables where I knew my mates would be. I was waylayed several times by people wanting to talk about TLH Leisure Resort or to tell me how much they had enjoyed staying with us. It is so good to get this sort of feedback and I am proud to be involved with TLH who are definitely market leaders in the Bowls world.
In the meantime my mobile was going off like mad, vibrating during the speeches. On looking at it, after the celebrations, I could see that I had two missed calls: one from a chum at the Dolphin in Dorset who had just qualified for the National EIBA Top Club and one from Nottingham IBC, where another great friend had qualified with her team.
Well done all of you. The National Top Club finalists are now published and drawn as:
Swale v Torquay United
Watford v Dolphin
Cumbria v City of Ely
Nottingham v North Wilts.
All very good teams with a fair few Internationals sprinkled over them. Oh well, bring ‘em on. Let’s go for it Torquay United. Last year we were the bridesmaid, this year we’ll be the bride.
That’s all for now folks!
Great News from Hampshire – Hot off the Press
Portsdown SMBC, headed by Richard Allen, run the Portsdown Charity 5’s competition every November. It’s a great event with many clubs taking part. The format is that 5 people create a team and they play a pairs and a triples discipline with cumulative scores after the games. It’s such a great format, based on real bowling teamwork, that TLH adopted it for its 4321 competition in February. The Charity 5’s is also a big fund raising event, and this year their chosen charity was The PBC Foundation. PBC, Primary Biliary Cirrhosis is a slow, chronic liver disease, which is not brought on by alcohol abuse. Anyone can develop this condition, and it can become very serious.
The final was very closely fought with Laven against Portsdown SMB. After the pairs were completed it was 5 shots each, and after the triples the score was even again, so an extra end had to be played. The winner of that extra end was Portsdown SMBC, so they are the 2010 champions. Well done guys and gals, you must be proud of yourselves.
The event raised a fantastic £1035.59 (where did the 59p come from?) and the 2 night mid week break voucher supplied by TLH raised a super £96 which is included in that total fund. That’s brilliant. Topping this sum up with £500 won during the Worthing Open Charity Event, Portsdown were able to donate £1535.59p to the Foundation. Roger Flake won the holiday voucher from TLH and I very much look forward to welcoming him to TLH in the future.
NEW FOR 2011 Turkey and Tinsel Short Mat Treat
I am often asked about non-competitive short mat bowling. As most of our bowling at TLH is competitive I am pleased to announce the arrival of our new Short Mat Break. The title says it all: It’s a real Christmas treat.
Dates: Friday 2nd – Monday 5th December 2011 – 3 nights from only £142�
Based at our Derwent Hotel the break consists of :
A flexible timetable to suit you
Non competitive bowling
Bowl as much or as little as you want to
Bowl against other guests at the hotel or local sides.
Festive dress optional on one day of your stay
Full Turkey and tinsel programme of events at TLH
Full festive entertainment, with dancing and cabarets.
Play on mats laid on the bowling arena
No rink fees It’s just a great way to have fun at Christmas with your friends, do that last little bit of Christmas shopping in the town, or just relax and enjoy yourselves around the resort. Call Sarah on 01803 400116 for more information. To book call Reservations on 01803 400500.
Getting ready for Christmas
I want to say how much I am looking forward to seeing you all over the Christmas Tournament period. It is always nice to meet the friends that we make over the years and to welcome you back to TLH. I also look forward to meeting the new faces that will be making their debut at TLH this year.
I know just how much coming away on a bowling break means to you and please be assured that TLH does its very best to make sure that you have the very best of time.
Signing off now
What have the British Army, Bournemouth University, Gloucestershire County Council and TLH Leisure Resort all got in common?
Well, prior to attending the Regional Finals of the National Training Awards probably not a lot, but now they are the only four organizations in the entire South West region to collect both a Regional Training Award and a National Training Award at the prestigious event run by UK Skills.
Four colleagues and myself attended the event. We all squeezed into my fairly old Volvo and hoped it would make it up the M5 to Bristol, without sat nav it was left to one of my colleagues to direct me, the old fashioned way, with a map, a compass and a piece of string (to find our way home again!)
But, we were able to find our way and made it to the venue, @ Bristol, a science museum in the heart of the city. It was a very smart awards ceremony – music, lights, cameras – just like the awards do’s you see on the TV.
We went up not knowing whether we had won an award, we had been shortlisted as finalists, but that was no guarantee of winning.
Our entry was based on our new customer service training programme ‘STARs’ which we were all very proud of and it has shown some real benefits within the business.
Regional Training Awards were announced first, and when it came to our category we all got a little nervous. Nerves turned to joy as our name was called out and we went on stage to collect our South West Regional Training Award – a huge achievement in itself.
After all the Regional Awards were given out it was time to announce the UK National Training Award winners. A maximum of one per category, but not every category would have one, they were only awarded to entries that were ‘truly exceptional’.
Even more nerves at this point, but then grins all round as TLH Leisure Resort was announced as a UK National Training Award winner. This is a huge accolade and is recognition for everyone at TLH Leisure Resort.
After a couple of celebratory drinks (lemonade for the driver!) we headed back down the M5 feeling rather chuffed with ourselves.
We now go on to attend a winners evening in London on 1st December