Pateley Bridge bowling club wins trophy after closure threat

Pateley Bridge Bowling club has won a cup final just months after fearing the outfit would fold due to dwindling numbers.

By Janet Harrison
Tuesday, 10th May 2022, 10:54 am

Playing against the Wayside Ramblers, the team won the Shutt Cup which is competed for by Harrogate Evening League Division Three teams.

“This is the second time in two seasons that Pateley has won a trophy, following several years of struggling to keep the club alive,” said spokesman Chris Ellwood.

“The Shutt Cup was last won by Pateley in 1998, and last season’s triumph in the Vets’ League handicap was the club’s first-ever in that competition.”

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Last June, Pateley Bridge and Upper Nidderdale Bowls Club officials warned that dwindling membership was a threat to its existence.

At the time Chris, who was then secretary, warned that the club was currently in dire straits due to reducing membership and could soon face extinction, bringing to an end about a century of bowling in the town.

But fortunes at the club are changing, even after flooding in February 2020 affecting the greens, and the club faces a more optimistic future.

Chris said: “Membership is increasing and, with the bowling green fast recovering (under the tender care of greenkeeper Lee Chandler) from the near-disastrous flood of February 2020, confidence in the future of the club is at a high.

“We now boast 28 active league players – enough to add a second team in the Harrogate Evening League – plus a team in the Veterans’ League.

“This is three teams in all, whereas last season we struggled to field two.

“We really do feel that the club is on the up, The winning of two trophies has certainly had an effect.

Although bowls is often regarded as a sport for older generations, Chris said it is great for anyone and has many benefits.

“It is an absorbing and sociable game and is a gentle outdoor exercise that is fun to play.”

Anyone interested is urged to contact secretary Stephen Brown at: [email protected]

* Send club news and pictures to Nidderdale Herald reporter: [email protected]