History Of Holsworthy Bowling Club

When Earl Stanhope granted the Park to the Town, in the Deeds it was mentioned that provision should be made for the Gentlemen of the Parish to play bowls, and an area was earmarked on the Deeds somewhere in the vicinity of what is now the Cricket Square.

HBC Club members around 1938

Holsworthy Bowling Club Circa 1938

Back Row (Left to Right)

Thomas Cornish Snr (Self employed carpenter), Albert Metters (Printer), Superintendant Boutfield (Ex Police), Dan Cooper (Solicitors clerk), Arthur Jenkins (Rate collector, Organist Wesleyan Chapel, dance band leader – Melody Makers,), Richard Crocker (Ironmonger), G Metters (Printer), Sgt Spicer (Ex police), F Kellaway (Furnisher), W Badcock (Jeweller), C Jewell (Company Director WD &NC Farmers), S Parsons (Garage and car hire), C Kinsman (Clerk RD Council), Mr Spiller (Manager Midland Bank)

Front Row (Left to Right)

Mr Brooks (Ex Merchant Navy), A Kellaway (Wife of Frank), A Dobson (Rector of Bradworthy), Mrs Manley and Mr Manley (Grocers), W Daniel and Mrs Daniel (Grocers), Mrs G Veal (Wife of George) Mrs M Hannaford (Wife of Fred Hannaford, Photographer), G Veal (Retired Post Man and Grounds Man of Club)

The First Green

The first “Green” known in the years before the War was on the site of the present one, but much smaller and not exactly square, there being only four rinks only going in one direction from East to West. The whole area was overgrown during the War with trees and bushes. It stayed in that condition until under the Chairmanship of the late Mr. Mark Oke it was cleared and used again from 1968, with a total Membership of 16.

During the 1980’s the Green was enlarged to its present size and a wooden pavilion built to replace two small sheds previously used.

Club opening 1985

Opening of the new Holsworthy Bowling Club Pavilion 4th may 1985

The County President Mr C Metherill bowls after opening the New Pavilion on Saturday 4th May 1985.

Lottery Grant

In 2002/3 the Club obtained a Lottery grant of £165,000. which, together with financial help from Members, enabled our present building to be completed.

Licensed Bar

In 2013 we were granted a Club licensed bar, ours until then being the only one of the 16 in North Devon without this facility. We hope this will encourage more visiting touring teams to come here, which, until now, they have been reluctant to do. On an annual basis we do get visits from Clubs from outside our normal league and cup areas including Bude, Stratton, Dunheved, Camelford, Bere Alston, Yelverton and Plymouth Hoe and in some cup events, from all over Devon. Over the years we have had both Lady and Men members who have won their ‘County Badge’ and played for the County Teams.


The clubhouse was renovated in 2008 after major fire damage to the roof of the pavilion. A £40,000 refurbishment project was completed in April 2009.

The Pavilion - present day

The Pavilion – present day


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