Grange Bowling Club ‘disillusioned and upset’ over council plans to close their green

February 19, 2013 No Comments »
Left to right, members of Grange Bowls Club John Webber, Dave Cocks and Alan Lewis.

Left to right, members of Grange Bowls Club John Webber, Dave Cocks and Alan Lewis.

Members of a city bowling club have been left “disillusioned and upset” over plans to close the century-old bowling green they use.

Shutting the bowling green at Grange Gardens in Holmesdale Street, Grangetown, would leave Grange Bowling Club without anywhere to play.

The initial proposal to close Grangetown’s only bowling green was announced by the council last month as part of £22m spending cuts for the 2013-14 financial year.

Alan Lewis, secretary of Grange Bowling Club, said the authority had not taken into consideration the recreational needs of the city’s elderly.

“Our club is one of the oldest in the city,” he said. “There’s no thought of the elderly and there’s nothing for older people.

“We are looking for grants, but we’ve only got until the end of this month to come up with a plan.

“If we’d been given six months we could have looked in more detail.”

But Lynda Thorne, the council’s cabinet member for communities, said the club can still avoid the axe by finding alternative sources of funding.

She also said she understood the need to keep older generations fit.

The Grangetown councillor said: “I want the green and the club to remain open and there are options to do it. We could use Grange Gardens to raise income, perhaps by opening a cafe or maybe get separate funding via a social enterprise.

“Club members could also personally maintain the greens – but this would be very hard work for them. Whatever happens I will work with the club.”

Zena Mabbs, chair of Grangetown Local History Society, is saddened by the green’s possible closure.

She said: “If this disappears then so will another piece of Grangetown’s history, only to be viewed in the future as a photograph in a book.

“The bowling green was the pride of the bowlers in its heyday with beautiful planting surrounding.

“Certainly its demise will deprive the community of the pleasure of playing a relaxing game of bowls.”

Gerald Escott, a former Grangetown resident, said the green had an important place in the ward’s history and was highly thought of by residents.

He said: “I spent many happy hours as a child during the 1940s and 1950s, watching the men and women in their white trousers and skirts and straw hats.

“In 1969, I lived in Pentrebane Street opposite Grange Gardens and was able to watch the bowls from my flat window.

“It’s a shame if the little bit of exercise and socialising that the ‘old folks’ get via their bowling is going to be taken from them, when they need it most.”

Cardiff Council is proposing to close six of the city’s 13 council-run bowls greens as part of its 2013/2014 budget. The other greens under threat are Pentwyn, Howard Gardens, Llwynfedw Gardens, Maindy, and Trelai.

A Cardiff council spokeswoman said: “This is a proposed budget which will not be set by the council until February 28.

“Proposing the 2013-14 budget has been extremely difficult as the council face steeper cuts than ever which means some difficult decisions will need to be taken.”

Related Posts

Leave A Response