Villagers told to ‘use it or lose it’

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Brinsley bowling green is threatened with closure and village folk have been told to ‘use it or lose it’.

Brinsley Parish Council said the facility had been used less and less in recent years with rates increasing more and more.

Council vice chairman Val Wakeling said membership had halved in the last three years, partly due to the younger generation not coming on board.

“The trouble with bowling is everyone is getting older and the youngsters aren’t coming in to it. It’s a great shame. We don’t want to lose it but we need to attract the younger generation.

“The parish council would not like to see the loss of any recreational amenities in the village as once they disappear then sadly they are not likely to return.”

Mrs Wakeling said the dwindling numbers twinned with the increased rates has meant the parish council has had to put up membership costs to cover their overheads, causing upset to some of the older members, who now have to pay £40 per season.

But Brinsley parish councillor John Booth was hopeful for the future of Brinsley Bowls, and said he planned to have a word with the local Scouts about taking up bowling.

“The Scouts are moving on to the recreation ground at the end of the month, so hopefully we can persuade the leader to start doing some training in bowls and get the next generation going.

“It would be ideal”, he added.

The parish council is now appealing for ideas to raise some money to keep it open.

For seven months of the year the pavilion sits empty, so councillors are considering making extra use of it, such as turning it into a tea room.

The bowling green is open 1.30 to 6pm Monday to Friday, weather permitting, until the end of September.

The parish council plans to hold an open day next season where people can come along and give it a go.

Councillors are currently doing a survey to ask residents for ideas on future leisure facilities in the village.