STORY
Liverpool Bowls
After reading the tragic story in the Liverpool Echo (http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/liverpool-bowling-club-history-destroyed-7739529) about a West Derby Bowling Clubhouse being torched to the ground by vandals and over 100 years of history that disappeared in a flash, something prompted me to look further into the brief history of bowls in Liverpool and find out the sense of community the game brought to the people who played it.

Bowls in Liverpool can be traced back to 1820 when the Darling Company started Drakes Pride. Sir Francis Drake and his famous quote inspired the name itself while he was playing a game of bowls,
'We still have time to finish the game and to thrash the Spaniards too.'
Drakes Pride is now one of the oldest surviving English bowls company in the world.

Liverpool has its own particular type of bowls, Crown Green Bowls, which is now thrives all over the North of England and parts of the North Midlands. The way Crown Green Bowls differs from Lawn Bowls is how the green is sloped. Lawn Bowls has an extremely flat green whereas Crown Green Bowls has a slightly sloped green in the middle. This makes for a more exciting game, which is an echo of the ethos of the city, excitement and fun.

After the First and Second World Wars injured soldiers would play bowls as a way of socialising, to keep active and also to improve their hand eye coordination. These are still the main reasons why bowls is still popular amongst the older generation today. The image above shows Liverpool Bowling club in Wavertree entertaining soldiers in 1917.

There is a beautiful quote at the end of the West Derby Bowling Story by Club Secretary Keith Jones, which captures the heart, passion and everything Liverpool stands for, nothing can stand in our way.
'We are going ahead with bowls games because we don't want it to let it beat us but we have a big fundraising event next week.'


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By klheap klheap


This story was added on 9th September 2014

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