As you might know, we are always keen to get involved with our local community and we have been sponsoring the Barry Athletic Bowls Club for a couple of years now. Last season, we provided the team with embroidered jackets at the start of the year and we make sure to always head down to the club to watch the games!

The club really ended last season on such a high, as the new season has recently begun, we checked in with Richard Bowen, Treasurer of the club, to find out what’s going on behind the scenes at Barry Athletic Bowls Club.

It has been a busy start to 2019 for the members of Barry Athletic Bowing Club; over the winter, a number of volunteers removed the old kitchen and reinstalled a new kitchen to better reflect the needs of the club and its members.

Opening day arrived with a winter wind still blowing across the Island but was nevertheless well attended by over 30 members who saw former member, Myra Newman, open the green by bowling the first bowl! She also dedicated a memorial bench to the club in memory of David Newman, a long serving member of the club.

Following opening day, the focus turned to the Atlantic Championships which the club was hosting in conjunction with three other clubs in Cardiff and the Vale! The Atlantic Championships are a qualifying tournament for the World Championships which will be held in Australia in 2020 and this event saw 26 countries descend on Wales to compete for one of the qualifying spots in 2020.

The spectators turned up in their droves, supporting their national teams! The green at Barry was a festival of colour and competition for almost three weeks as the likes of Brazil and Argentina faced off in a South American derby; whilst Turkey, Spain and Malta battled it out for Mediterranean supremacy. However, it was the heavyweight home nations that captured most of the medals with Scotland heading the table closely followed by England and Wales.

From the club’s perspective, the Championships were a huge success thanks to the dedication and support from over 30 members who turned up at 7am each morning to prepare the facilities and were still there as the sun went down! They received so many compliments about the hospitality and the quality of our facilities, with many of the teams promising return visits. There was wide social media coverage of the event with many matches being streamed live across the world, which provided great promotion and visibility for the club and its sponsors.

Following the success of the event, focus has turned to their domestic competitions and with a number of new members in their ranks, the club has been looking to make a good start in their domestic leagues and national competitions. Progress in the Welsh Club Championship has been faultless with three wins under their belt and they have successfully pushed through the group stage to the national knockouts! The league performances, however, have not been so consistent, with both first and second teams suffering a couple of narrow defeats, as they look to build the levels of performance and consistency that was displayed last season.

It has been a busy but optimistic start to the 2109 season, and which bodes well for another successful season at Barry Athletic Bowling Club!

Bowls is an excellent sport for all ages to get involved with, especially those looking to try their hand at a new competitive sport. We’re thrilled to be able to help the club grow and share the sport with all ages of our community!