Leatherjacket larvae cause havoc for Worthing bowlers

Leatherjacket larvae are very small, but they have caused big problems at Marine Gardens in recent weeks.

Friday, 7th May 2021, 3:45 pm
Season's under way at Goring Manor

An infestation has hit the green with two fifths covered with germination sheets.

Sussex CCC and other bowls club have been similarly blighted, but they hope the whole green at Marine will have been restored within a few weeks.

Regular watering by a team of volunteer members was certainly aided by flocks of starlings feasting on the larvae.

The captain and president at Marine Gardens BC

The planned opening in April was cancelled but the 2021 home season burst into life on Saturday with a ladies v gents match.

Restrictions mean only 24 players can be on the green at any time so four lots of triples started at 10am followed by another four sets at 2pm.

The customary opening ceremony took place with president Jill Colbourn and captain Michael Ives rolling the first bowls.

It was reassuring to see the tradition renewed after being wiped out last year.

Dry weather had made for an unseasonably quick surface but accurate bowling ensued.

A final tally of the cards saw the gents pip the ladies 65-64 and it was wonderful to see players back on the green.

The club played three social games at Goring Manor on two days last week.

Manor were deserving winners in all three matches.

Rink scores: Roger Parrish, Jill Colbourn & skip Ivan Godsmark lot 17-11; E Baldwin, Terry Ashley & skip Mike Hitchin lot 20-12; T Baldwin, Leon White & skip Jim Gray won 16-13. Marine Gardens lost 50-39. Keith White, John Nettlingham & skip Jenny Ashman lost 29-10; George Tracey, David Smith & skip Dave Muggeridge lost 17-13; Laurie Bradley, Shaun Coppard & skip Harry Smith lot 17-12; Marine Gardens lot 63.35. Paul Baker, Harry Tattersall & skip Michael Ives lost 21-15; Roy Mills, Alan Patterson & skip Mike Hitchin lost 25-11; Albert Leatham, Dennis Crossweller & skip Dennis Martin won 22-9.Marine Gardens lost 55-48.

Restrictions and the limited access allowed to clubhouses mean an open day planned for May 16 has been cancelled.


Maltravers BC is open again and their first week has involved roll-ups for members, and potential new ones having coaching lessons from men’s captain Tony Marks.

Their open day this year coincides with Bowls England’s Big Weekend and all are welcome to go and try this sociable game for free with advice available from members.

It is on Sunday, May 30, from 10am to 4pm.

Bank Holiday Monday brought a spoon drive for 24 members, with restrictions in place under government advice on Covid-19. A great afternoon was held despite everyone feeling the cold in a strong wind – at least the rain held off.

Spoon Drive number one consisted of triples being played on four rinks, six ends being played with the winners moving on a rink to play another team.

A running total was in order and after three games, the winners were declared with a score of 26-9 – Roger May, Maz Howe and Charlie McGowan.

Runners-up with 22-9 were Yvonne Kirkby-Bott, Leslie Ball and Terry Carline.

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Following their successful opening day club event, Goring Manor bowlers started their very full season of matches against other clubs.

The first match was a trip to Portslade to play on their new all-weather green.

These greens can be very tricky, playing much faster than grass. However, the Portslade green was heavier than expected.

Four triples were played and each team won on two rinks. However, the overall shot count was 63-58 to Goring Manor. Top rink went to Pam Edwards, Alan Turley (two players who moved to GM from the now defunct Homefield Park) and skip Dave Crockett. Skip Basil Taylor also recorded a win.

Goring hosted a match against Marine Gardens in which they were again successful, winning two rinks out of three, with an overall shot score of 50-39.

Top rink went Jimmy Wan, Derek King and skip Tommy Tsoi. Francis Fahey was the other winning skip.

There were two matches at home to Marine Gardens in one day.

In the morning match, Goring Manor won on all three rinks with an overall score of 63-35. Top rink went to Rod Smith, Doug Hunt and skip Kevin Pearce. The other winning skips were Dave Crockett and Derek King. In the afternoon, Goring Manor won on two of the three rinks and posted an overall score of 55-48.

Top rink went to Stuart Andrews, Jim Edwards and skip Tommy Tsoi. Reg Gore was the other winning skip.

It meant Goring Manor made a perfect start to their season, winning four matches out of four.

On Saturday a club chairman’s team played a club captain team.

The Chairman’s team won by a narrow margin.