Ketton bowlers’ legacy for next generation

Ketton bowls club will be operating from a new clubhouse in the forthcoming season (see images below), the product of intensive fund-raising and support from sponsors within the village and in Rutland.

A refurbished cabin, supplied by Cabins GB based in Alconbury, has been installed to replace the previous clubhouse which was purchased shortly after the club was formed in 1974 and which in recent years has shown serious signs of wear and tear including a leaking roof and crumbling exterior.

The club has been fund-raising through car boot sales, dances, quizzes and coffee mornings but soon discovered the clubhouse project was out of its financial reach until three local grant funds came to its rescue.

The Healthy Rutland Scheme, which provided £5,400, funds projects promoted by local community and voluntary organisations designed to improve the health and wellbeing of local communities. The scheme understood the importance of the clubhouse in enabling the club to meet its ambitions of reaching into the community to provide a facility and service that supports and promotes health and well-being accessible across all ages.

The Ketton-based Whitbread Trust also spotted the potential to provide an improvement for the village, and made a valuable contribution of £4,000. Additional £500 funding and support was also provided by the Rutland Trust.

Pre-furnished with heating, lighting, fitted sink and draining board and specially formatted double picture window to provide visibility on to Ketton’s professionally maintained six rink green, the cabin was delivered by Bedford-based hauliers D & G Noble.

Despite the very close proximity of a metal telegraph pole and gate post, the new cabin was deftly edged into position with a hydraulic crane to replace the its predecessor in less than two hours with the help of volunteer Ketton members.

Said chairman Bob Warters: “The arrival of the new cabin is the culmination of at least two years of intensive fund raising by our dedicated members and committee, together with the fantastic support we have received from our sponsors.

“It will give the club a great boost for the new season – in which we will be hosting the Northants Federation county championships in July for the second time in our 46-year history. It will also be the current members’ legacy for the future.”

President Charlie Underwood, who quickly organised the replacement of the club’s distinctive crest on the cabin frontage, added:” It has been a great team effort ever since we decided we needed to replace the crumbling old cabin which had stood us in good stead for 40 years. It is our gift to the community and the next generations of bowlers and will provide a vital benefit to our money-raising galas and competitions.”

Charlie went on to say: “The club will now be able to cement its position as a great health and wellbeing asset for Ketton, and will work to encourage people to visit and engage to build friendships, to connect with others and to participate in some decent physical exercise.”

Ketton Bowls Club aims to improve on its current membership of around 40 players and social members and currently puts out seven teams every week in the Stamford and Peterborough Leagues as well as friendly matches. It is also able to provide practice sessions for potential new members during certain evenings and afternoons.

The club in Pit Lane, is affiliated to the Northants Bowling Federation and will be running at least two gala days in the summer, as well as staging the Northants finals on July 15.

The club’s registration day will be held on Sunday, March 8 (11 am) when current and potentially new members will be able to inspect the its new home.

FOOTNOTE: Ketton, like every other club in the county Federation, is hoping that the current coronavirus outbreak will not deeply effect its preparations for the new season, in which it also competes in the Stamford and Peterborough Leagues with upto seven teams fielded every week.