I am the Marketing and Promotions officer at Gloucester Co-op Bowls Club and a big part of my role is helping to recruit new members to the group.
2020 hit the world with Covid-19 and when we went into lockdown in March, it seemed that our bowling season was over before it had began.
A lot of bowls clubs decided that because of the age demographic of their members, it would be too dangerous to open for the season. However, a large number of our members were determined to continue playing bowls outdoors in a safe way, so together we set up a detailed plan to ensure that the club could keep its door open to members.
Our main consideration was to encourage members to remain socially and physically active, but at the same time, keeping all our members safe and ensuring that we met government guidance.
To make sure the club was safe, we played on every other rink to ensure social distancing was kept in place and allocated two days per week for members who considered themselves more vulnerable, so they could play without other bowlers around.
Some members felt that they were unable to leave home because of Covid-19, so we also arranged a number of Zoom meetings to enable those who remained in isolation to socialise with other members.
We’re proud to be an inclusive club. The building has been adapted to ensure that facilities are accessible for members and we have a qualified bowls coach who has undertaken training to coach people who have a disability.
As we know, physical activity helps to provide a healthier and happier lifestyle and has long-term benefits, while also improving mental wellbeing. At Gloucester Co-op Bows Club, many of our members are able to socialise together in a friendly and safe environment.
I believe there are plenty of potential bowlers out there, but the challenge is reaching them. With the help of we can move, we hope to be able to grow our membership to help our club thrive and to encourage more people in Gloucester to be active.
Gloucester Co-op Bowls Club welcomes beginners and experienced bowlers of all levels of ability, and also welcomes social, non-playing members. The club runs friendly, league and competition games and provides free coaching and use of all equipment. Find out more >