WHITE Hart did not have the best of weeks in the various crown green bowls leagues, but July has been a good month overall for the club.
The Wednesday Yardley Wood & District team are still on course for promotion from Division Three after a hard fought 140-132 win at Henley B.
They had six winners – Tim Hollingshead, Dave Kings, Neil Laxton, John Meredith, Dave Edwards and captain Paul Matthews. White Hart are now just one point behind leaders Ye Olde Knowle with only four games to play.
The Over 60s Heart of England B team beat Solihull RBL A 112-85. Mike D’Abreu – playing a first team match for the first time in a while – was an impressive 21-5 winner and was well supported by John Meredith (21-13), Rob Faulks (21-13) and Roger Broome (21-10).
The Warwick & Worcester Premier League team were soundly beaten 236-182 at home in Division Three by title-chasing Ward End Social, having only three winners from the 12 ties – Ian and Sheila Humphreys and Paul Matthews – who battled back from an 11-5 deficit to win by five shots.
The Redditch club face an uphill struggle against relegation with seven games left.
Both White Hart teams in the SW Birmingham League were beaten by Wythall A and B teams, while the Heart of England Thursday B team struggled against a talented Baldwin B who head Division Three.
The visitors had just two winners – Brian Chatterley and Tom Hawks – as only two other players reached double figures – Kirk Wright and captain Norman Batchelor.
The White Hart club hold Sunday afternoon taster sessions for newcomers, novices and non-member bowlers between 2-4pm, when everyone will be made welcome.
Is this the oldest sporting venue in Redditch?
LONG-STANDING White Hart BC member Dave Kings has been delving into the past in an attempt to discover more about the history of the club, including discovering whether it is indeed the oldest sporting venue in the town.
Dave said: “We know that a bowling green has been in existence at the White Hart since at least 1867 as tokens exist from that date as payment for admittance to the green.
“In 1868 the Redditch Indicator newspaper remarked on the ‘beautiful bowling green at the White Hart’. We believe this gives us reason to suggest we are the oldest sporting club in Redditch and certainly the oldest one that has remained in its original and permanent position.
“As the White Hart pub has been in existence since at least the middle of the 18th century and in the early 19th century had approximately two acres of land, there is every reason to suggest a bowling green may have existed as far back as then.
“An interesting story is told in Anne Bradford’s excellent book ‘Old Redditch Voices’ of two bookmakers (one from Redditch and the other from Bromsgrove) meeting at the White Hart in the early 1900s and placing a bet of 50 guineas (over £5,000 in today’s money) on which one would win a game of bowls!
Can you expand on Dave’s findings? If so and you would like to get in touch with him, e-mail your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.