We started with muggy and overcast day in Amesbury and that was how it stayed – just a few spots late in the game but over before it started. Once found, there was plenty of parking at the bowls club and a very pleasant small park, or large garden of the old house, to play bowls in. All complemented by a large clubhouse with sensible sized changing rooms and an office for the Match Officers to write and exchange the cards in (that was a first for me!).
Club President Peter Harding along with Captains Harry Noyles and Janice Bull welcomed the Friends, their own players and all guests onto the green. Amesbury players and visitors then joined the Friends and guests in a Minute’s Silence in memory of our very dear Friend Tony Taylor of Cambridgeshire who had passed away earlier in the day.
After the group photographs were taken, and the order of play and rink announcements were over we commenced. As always with the Friends’ games there was plenty of banter and laughter on the rinks and the odd groan when a shot didn’t come off. Complements to Amesbury Green Team – it was a lovely playing surface and our rink ran as true as any I’ve played on this year. The rest of my rink must have agreed with me as we came out Top Rink, thank you David Hamilton, Maureen Peyton & Dennis Taylor, dream team!
We completed the 21 ends without getting damp and took our places at the tables for a sumptuous meal. More Complements! this time to Julie and her team (Dave, Julie2, Tina, Pat & Lynn) for both an excellent buffet lunch and a really delicious roast dinner. I don’t know how the visitors managed it all as I saw them stuffing cake with tea/coffee during the afternoon while we were playing! Our liquid refreshment was ably provided by Terry & Mike.
President Peter gave an excellent speech. He had a good knowledge of the Friends of English Bowling (correct!) and gave us a brief overview of their club and successes this year including qualifiers for Leamington. He invited us to join them in 2025 for a joint celebration for their century and our 20 years. Stand behind me in the queue folks. I followed with the usual appreciations and complements on their club and successes. We had 16 Counties represented and I introduced some of our players and guests including BE SVP Paul Robson and partner Leslie, and FEB Executives Kath & Adie Lloyd. John Southern of Bedfordshire a past Amesbury club member and Wilts County President in 2017 was also playing for the Friends. I added to Peter’s information about the Friends accentuating the positives of being a member and I hope we will soon be joined by some Amesbury members.
The Friends and Amesbury both had 3 winning rinks however the final Score in our favour was 124-100. Top Rink prizes to both sides were handed out and the Amesbury top rink was Vanessa McCormack, Jim Hassard, Barry Guyer and Jim Ford, and I concluded by presenting President Peter with a framed Certificate to commemorate our visit.
Captain of the Day
FoEB Hon Secretary