Welcome to this edition of your Newsletter.

May I, on behalf of the Manager and the Management Committee, wish all our members and patrons a Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year.

Club News first: all members are asked to place their bowling bags in the Changing Rooms – not in the concourse areas. This is a necessary Health and Safety measure.

Members are once again asked to kindly empty their plastic water cups when they complete a game.

MATS: please respect our club mats – do not hurl them into the concourse! They DO cost money!

Xmas Raffle:  A Thornton’s Hamper for the lucky winner!  The Ladies Section is also doing a Raffle.

Green – Stretching – Friday Dec. 23rd.

Xmas Holiday Times: Sat. Dec. 24th – closed; Sun. 25th – closed; Mon. 26th – closed; Tues. 27th – closed; Sat. 31st Dec. – closed (except for evening bar); Sun. 1st Jan. – closed;Mon. 2nd Jan. – closed.

Warning: one day soon there will be a membership card check – our Constitution states all members should carry their cards at all times in the Stadium. Do not be embarrassed if you are asked to leave the green! You have been warned.

Once again, a reminder to book early for your Xmas Dinner – this is the ideal location for your annual Club outing. See Alberta.

All the Club’s evening Leagues for men now appear weekly in the ‘Newsletter’ and also the ‘South Belfast News’ – which you can pick up for free in the foyer.

The Visually Impaired Bowling Singles Championships for 2011: in mid – November went very well. I want to thank  all our Club umpires, markers, helpers, etc who worked to make this event a success- well organised by Billy McConkey. The Chairman, Doreen Miskelly, wishes to thank all the markers especially in a different format from usual.  A special word of congratulations to Pat Hayes, the Tournament Director who did himself and his organisation proud. Well done Pat!  It IS important at Championships like these for the Club to ‘put on a good show’ when we are hosting anybody from the ‘mainland,’ and we did. As usual our Manager worked overtime and we owe Richard another big vote of thanks. Alberta and the restaurant girls really excelled themselves for the three days.

Finally, it was great to see an Irish champion emerge – after 11 years! Our own Lisa Royle won all her matches to become the B1winner.  Well done Lisa! (and Wallace!). See picture below:

Umpires Corner: Clarification – there is NO 10 second rule in Bowls. There is, however, a 30 second rule, and I quote: ‘The process of deciding the number of shots scored should not start until the last bowl required to be played in an end has come to rest, or 30 seconds after that if either Skip (in fours) or opponent in Singles asks for this 30 second period. If either Skip or opponent in Singles has asked for this 30sec. period, any bowl in the head which is likely to fall should not be secured during that period.’

An old bowls quotation – from 1902 : ‘Bowls is a quiet and philosophic amusement which depends for its success on a thorough realisation that nothing happens in it, any more than in real life, exactly according to scientific calculation.’ – now then, for those of you in MENSA, what do you make of that?

May I take this opportunity to remind all bowlers (whatever the level of experience) of what we in the Coaches’ Association call the 4 ‘Cs’ : Concentration produces Co-Ordination which in turn creates Consistency which engenders Confidence. I am aware there are other ‘Cs’, but you could have a good argument over which big ‘C’ is the most important.