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Marley Hill bowlers become the first to go it alone

Cutting the tape at official handover

Bowlers in Marley Hill have become the first in Gateshead to take over the running of their own bowling green and pavilion.

Gateshead Council handed over responsibility for maintaining and managing the club's facilities to the club's members in August.

The change - called a Community Asset Transfer - means the club's own members are now responsible for grass cutting, rolling and other maintenance tasks.

Marley Hill 02
Two years ago, the Council was forced to consider halving the number of bowling greens in Gateshead from 27 to just 14 as continuing cuts in Government funding meant that the Council would be unable to maintain them.

However, councillors agreed to investigate ways of transferring responsibility for the greens to the clubs themselves, as they would be able to access sources of funding not available to local councils.

"We really were facing the prospect of having to close half of our bowling greens simply for the lack of money to maintain them," says Councillor Angela Douglas, Cabinet Member for Culture, Sport and Leisure.

"It's unthinkable, but the funding cuts imposed by the Government have really left us, and the local communities we serve, high and dry.

"We know how important facilities like bowling greens are to the local community so we couldn't allow such a radical closure programme to happen. Asset transfer seemed to offer one way out, though it is complicated and it does place huge responsibility on the people who use the facility."

<
>
  • New equipment
  • Trying out the green
  • The Mayor and Mayoress with club members and guests
  • Guests celebrate the club's new-found independence
  • The Mayor with Alan Thompson and Dennis Billany
  • The Mayor tries out the green
  • The Mayor and Mayoress with club members
  • Silverware on view
  • Cutting the cake

The handover ceremony at Marley Hill Bowling Club

The council has spent 12 months working with the club's management committee to ensure they had the necessary knowledge and skills to maintain their own facilities and to meet their legal requirements.

Funding was also provided from the council's Thrive Fund to purchase grass cutting equipment, on-site storage and other site improvements required for a Community Asset Transfer.

"The committee at Marley Hill have worked really hard to get ready for our first asset transfer of a bowling green," says Councillor Douglas. "I'm pleased to say they are now more than primed to take on their new responsibilities. We wish them great success in the future."

Plans are also well advanced for Pelaw Bowls Pavilion and Bowling Green to complete their own Community Asset Transfer sometime in the autumn.

Cutting the tape at official handover
06 September 2019

Bowlers in Marley Hill have become the first in Gateshead to take over the running of their own bowling green and pavilion.

Gateshead Council handed over responsibility for maintaining and managing the club's facilities to the club's members in August.

The change - called a Community Asset Transfer - means the club's own members are now responsible for grass cutting, rolling and other maintenance tasks.

Marley Hill 02
Two years ago, the Council was forced to consider halving the number of bowling greens in Gateshead from 27 to just 14 as continuing cuts in Government funding meant that the Council would be unable to maintain them.

However, councillors agreed to investigate ways of transferring responsibility for the greens to the clubs themselves, as they would be able to access sources of funding not available to local councils.

"We really were facing the prospect of having to close half of our bowling greens simply for the lack of money to maintain them," says Councillor Angela Douglas, Cabinet Member for Culture, Sport and Leisure.

"It's unthinkable, but the funding cuts imposed by the Government have really left us, and the local communities we serve, high and dry.

"We know how important facilities like bowling greens are to the local community so we couldn't allow such a radical closure programme to happen. Asset transfer seemed to offer one way out, though it is complicated and it does place huge responsibility on the people who use the facility."

<
>
  • New equipment
  • Trying out the green
  • The Mayor and Mayoress with club members and guests
  • Guests celebrate the club's new-found independence
  • The Mayor with Alan Thompson and Dennis Billany
  • The Mayor tries out the green
  • The Mayor and Mayoress with club members
  • Silverware on view
  • Cutting the cake

The handover ceremony at Marley Hill Bowling Club

The council has spent 12 months working with the club's management committee to ensure they had the necessary knowledge and skills to maintain their own facilities and to meet their legal requirements.

Funding was also provided from the council's Thrive Fund to purchase grass cutting equipment, on-site storage and other site improvements required for a Community Asset Transfer.

"The committee at Marley Hill have worked really hard to get ready for our first asset transfer of a bowling green," says Councillor Douglas. "I'm pleased to say they are now more than primed to take on their new responsibilities. We wish them great success in the future."

Plans are also well advanced for Pelaw Bowls Pavilion and Bowling Green to complete their own Community Asset Transfer sometime in the autumn.

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