Llanidloes Bowliing Club
Llanidloes Bowliing Club

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Llanidloes Bowling Club History

Disclaimer "Information found within this History has been obtained from various sources Including, Terence Jones, Llanidloes Bowling Club Archives, British Newspaper Archives, Mid Wales Bowling Association, Mid Wales Womens' Bowling Association, Montgomeryshire Bowling Association, Welsh Bowling Association and The Welsh Womens' Bowling Association.

Seeing as record keeping does not appear to be particularly important within the Bowling Community, it has been very difficult to compile records of members, competitions, results, achievements etc. Mind you a few in the club are very good at keeping records and many thanks must go out to Terence Jones who has been a mine of information. The main problem seems to come from the fact that there are far too many people in Wales called Jones or Evans or Owen and so on. Anyway, all this means the information found herein may not be as accurate as perhaps it could be."

A full History of the Llanidloes Bowling Club is being compliled and will, hopefully, be completed before the 2021 season ends. Contained on these pages are extracts from various chapters of the History being compiled.

In the full history we have also tried to get a feeling of what life in Llanidloes was like from the Pre 1900 hundreds to present day.

If you , the reader, has any information regarding the History of the Llanidloes Bowling Club and would like to see it appear in the completed History being written please contact us by e-mail

The Town of Llanidloes derives its name from the dedication of its church to St. Idloes, who was an eminent British saint around the middle of the sixth century. A Census of the time shows a large decrease in population from around 5,000 in 1841 to around 2,500 in the census of 1901. The population seems to have remained between 2,500 and 3,000 up to the year 2001. The majority of employment opportunities still remains in the industrial and agricultural areas but these industries have been in decline in the more recent times. The population has been maintained through the service industries that support the above industries and retirement. Religion has always been a big part of Welsh Culture.

first Sunday school 1769

Crowlwm, near Llanidloes, where in 1769 it is believed the first Sunday school in Wales was established by Jenkin Morgan.

Woolen Industry workers

The woollen industry in Wales was at times the country's most important industry, though it often struggled to compete with the better-funded woollen mills in the north of England, and almost disappeared during the 20th century. There is continued demand for quality Welsh woollen products

In 1904 we see the formation of the Welsh Bowling Association

The MWBA was the first County Bowling Association in Wales founded in 1912. To mark the event there was a singles competition which had an entry of around 100 members from several clubs. Oswestry Belgrave Club pulled out but a new club, Llanidloes, came in to fill the breach and one of their representatives, A. J. Roberts reached the final round. In 1914 the Llanidloes Bowling Club joined the Mid Wales Bowling Association.

In 1915 we see the first mention of a Llanidloes bowler taking part in the Mid Wales Championship taking place at Newtown. A. J. Roberts of Llanidloes came through the preliminary rounds but fell in the 1st round proper to H. R. Edwards of Royal Welsh Warehouses by a score of 21 to 13.


The 18th Infantry Brigade was billeted here for military trainingThe 18th Infantry Brigade was billeted here for military trainingThe 18th Infantry Brigade was billeted here for military training

The 18th Infantry Brigade was billeted here for military training. A large camp was set up in fields near the town. The arrival of the 18th Infantry Brigade was clearly a memorable event for the people of Llanidloes and commemorative postcards were issued to mark the occasion. The 18th West Yorkshire Infantry Brigade marched down Great Oak Street after disembarking at the railway station. The parade is led by the Brigade's military band. Mr Cyrus Meredith of Llanidloes wrote "This was a sight which I will never forget."

Opening of the Pavilion 1928

1928 was to be a very busy year for the Llanidloes Bowling Club. To celebrate the opening of their new Pavilion, Newtown Bowling Club were invited to play a Six Rink match. This would be the first occasion, on which the new Pavilion erected on the ground by the club, would be used. The Newtown club saw this as a Landmark event for the Llanidloes Club and as a mark of respect for the Llanidloes Bowlers they brought a full, strong six rink team made up of veterans and youthful members.
The game was a reported as a "Most enjoyable one, fought out in the friendly and sporting spirit which always characterises the games between the two clubs." Llanidloes proved to be the victors by just 6 shots.

The Players in this match were:

Llanidloes 124 points
N Meredith, D Roberts, D Morgan, T Hewitt, J Ellis, J Meredeth, L Rees, J Williams, T Mills, E Vincent, H Jones, F Smith, T Llewelyn, E Morgan, B Thomas, A Roberts, T Allit, J Hampton, T Hughes, E Smith, Bennett Owen, J Owen, W Griffiths, J Lewis.
Newtown 118 points
C Parry, H Townsend, C Leggatt, L Jones, M Owen, S Morgan. J Morris, W Hollinshead, T Davies, H Bennett, E Payne, D Bunford. C Evans, E Humphreys, A Breese, T Phillips, F Benbow, E Hilton, C Lloyd, E Morgan, E. Wolley, T Brumwell, J Roberts, A Benbow.

Finally we get to the first set of minutes of the Llanidloes Bowling Club. The AGM 20th January 1936 was held at the Bank House. The President was T. Ellis and the club captain was H Meredith. The treasurer reported that the Bank Balance was in debit by the sum of £5.13/- 1d. The treasurer did say this was due to a few members not having paid their membership fees yet.
March 1936. Fixtures for the season will be against Aberystwyth Away, Newtown Home, Lampeter Away, Llandrindod Home, Builth Wells Away and Talgarth Home."

Laying of the last turf

Laying the Last turf

In January 1946 The committee, once again, discussed rolling the green and decided to have the green rolled once per week."! At this point it is worth pointing out that grass seeding and rolling the green were and still is today one of the hottest topics of discussion throughout the club. There are those that think the green should be rolled with a heavy roller twice a season, those that think the green should be rolled with a light roller every week, those that think no rolling is better and so on. There are also several methods of reseeding or not reseeding at all. So many options. In fact everyone seems to have their own opinion. Will these discussions go on forever? I expect so.

The results of four matches played in 1948 were:

Home against Newtown Lost 91 to 58
Away against Builth Lost 101 to 59
Home against knighton Won 73 to 69
Away against Llandrindod Won 78 to 72

Mr J Hampton reported at the January Committee Meeting the 1949 Tour committee have finalised how many places each club has can join the tour. These are: Newtown - 5 places, Llanidloes - 5 places, Llandrindod - 3 places, Talgarth - 2 Places and Builth Wells - 5 Places.

The tour consists of the following matches:

Monday 5th June The Centenary Club - Wembly
Tuesday 6th June London Parks Bowling Association
Wednesday 7th June London Bowling Sedcretaries Association Romford
Thursday 8th June Royal Household - Windsor
Friday 9th June Essex County Bowling Association
Saturday 10th June Bank Bowling Association

The tourists will be staying at the Bonnington Hotel. The tariff for the hotel will be 15/6 per Single per night, 30/- per double per night. Lunch will be 5/-

Transport will be £2.10/- per person.

Reported in 1954 MR. George F. Hamer of Summerfield Park. Llanidloes, who becomes a Knight, is one of the leading figures in public life and local government in Wales. Lord-lieutenant of Montgomeryshire and a former High Sheriff. His services were rewarded with the C.B.E. in 1948. In the same year he received the Freedom of his native town of Llanidloes of which he has been Mayor 11 times and a member of the Town council for 23 years.

In June 1956, great discussion took place regarding the building of the public Urinal on the recreation ground. It was a reported that a rough sketch had been drawn up for a galvanised steel convenience. Some members favoured a brick and concrete structure. The chairman undertook to have a plan drawn up for a brick convenience.

The four Llanidloes members selected to play for the county championship in 1958 were R Jones, J Evans, M Jones and H Young.

The eight Llanidloes members that were selected to play for Montgomeryshire at Newport were R Jerman, C P Townsend, H Young, A Owen, R Jones, M Jones, E Williams and E C Stephens.

Mr C Stephens, a member of our club, will be the president of the Welsh Bowling Association for 1978. As this will be of special interest to our club and an honour it was agreed that he should be the recipient of a gift from our club to mark the occasion. It was proposed that he should be awarded with an inscribed glass decanter.

Four Quotations from local builders were requested from O G W Builders, Evans Porta-buildings, D W Jerman and Colin Jones Building Contractors. The quotes were as follows; O G W Builders £18,648, Evans £24,625, D W Jerman £18,308 and Colin Jones £16,595

The roof going on the new Club House

In April 1982 a list of invitations was drawn up by the committee for the opening of the new clubhouse which was arranged for Saturday 1st May 1982. Invitations should be extended to all club members and to the organisations which had helped to finance the project and to persons who had assisted in various ways.

I wonder if there was free Ale

In the October meeting there was a long discussion concerning the current state of electoral affairs whereby women are unable to vote at an AGM and unable to stand for election to the management committee. The discussion also addressed the implications any alterations of this state would have on the club's constitution and its affiliation to both MBA and WBA. It was agreed that no moves should be instigated to affect the status quo unless a direct request to do so was received in writing.

Mid Wales Women including May and Caroline

The Mid Wales Women's Bowling Association for the 1999 Season

The last Welsh appearance of Ms Caroline Jones

The last Welsh appearance of Ms Caroline Jones took place on her home turf just 20 odd miles from her own Doorstep and home Bowling Club. It was, of course, not her last connection with Welsh Bowls

It was reported that the Ladies section did not object to the Ladies Captain sitting on the Management Committee.

During the July 2004 Committee Meeting it was put forward that Charlie Stephens be nominated with respect to becoming an Honorary Life Member of the Welsh Bowling Association, Charlie was instrumental in forming the Montgomeryshire and District Bowling Association in 1955. He was secretary of the MCBA for 23 years (1958 - 1975). Charlie was president of the WBA in 1978 when Wales Won the International Championship and was the first team manager of the National side in the 1982 Commonwealth Games, Australia where Wales came away with one Silver Medal in the Men's Pairs with Lyn Perkins and Spencer Wilshire . He is also Patron, Hon. Life Member and President Elect (2005) of the MCBA.

W B A Jubilee Celebration 2005

Llanidloes Members present in the W B A Jubilee Celebration 2005 were

Gerard Owen, Lee Morris, Philip Evans, Daniel Richards, Tony Evans, Tim Jones, Alan Addison, Austin Pugh, Emrys Owen, Gareth Manuel, Reg Hughes, Delwyn Owen, Nigel Jones, Ken Evans, Charlie Stephens (President), Mathew Young and Colin Evans.

Mid Wales Women's Bowling Association 2019 under 25 Singles Winner - Naomi Evans Llanidloes

During the summer of 2020 limited bowls was p[layed on the lush grass of Llanidloes Bowling Green. An unofficial competition was arranged and played for by the small amount of Bowlers that came out to play. The banter was good and the matching weather conditions made for a pleasant time but there was one thing missing. A bit of competition was required. As no club competitions were taking place the players decided to spice it up a bit. It was therefore decided to organise a competition which would take into account singles, pairs and triples formats ( all players drawn out of a hat ) combining all the scores, using several formulations to give us winners. In the end we came come up with a singles champion and pairs champions. After a couple of mini Lockdowns the winners of the Covid 2020 pairs Trophy were Emrys and Austin and the Covid 2020 Singles champion was, and this is not a fix, yours truly.

Emrys and Austin make the most of the Covid quiet times

Emrys and Austin take the Covid 2020 Trophy.

Runners up were Andy Williams and John Townsend

So now we come to the end of 2020 with only the interrupted indoor season to carry on, with several mini lockdowns, into 2021. The ever presents are there in Llandrindod Wells every Thursday battling for the indoor trophy. Many thanks must go to Terence for organising the indoor sessions and Alan, Emrys, John A, Dilwyn, Graham, and Charlie for making this indoor season a happy one in these troubling times.

As for the winter bowling months ahead, all will depend on vaccines and lockdowns. An indoor league has been set for the last 3 months of the indoor season and plans are being made for a return to the bowling green in the spring.
Perhaps Volume Two will be able tell us how things panned out.

Index - Indoors - Bowls Rules - Calendar - Contact - Newsletter - Member Profile - Etiquette - Links - History - Fixtures - Gallery - Committee

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Logo redraw - Bernard Mayne Williams

The club is located on Llangurig Road to the south of the town.
Nearest postcode: SY18 6EX. Click here for a google map.