You will have noticed, hopefully, our request for volunteers to take the summer packs (as we call them), out to our members who play outdoor. If you have not yet given your name into the Office yet, please think of doing so – it saves the Club a lot of postage.  Thank you in advance.  On a similar vein, we are continuing to expand our members’ e-mail list – we can send out the summer packs electronically – again, please leave your e-mail address in the Office – forms are available.

As usual we are operating Summer Four Bowl Pairs Leagues – primarily for those members who do not wish to play in Ulster’s hot summer weather. This year – depending on entries, we are offering Monday mornings from 10am to 12 noon, the same time for Tuesdays, and Friday evenings 7.15 to 9.15.
Entry forms will be available in the Office from March 5th. Each league will be restricted to 14 teams. If you wish to play on a different day, speak to Richard or John.

A big thank you to all our members who made the effort to play postponed games – Bobby Johnston (our Comp. Secretary), says it has been a good year in this respect. Talking of Bobby, I have to inform members that he is giving up his post as Competition Secretary at the end of February – after 10 years of exemplary service (and even longer on Committee!).  His wife Gwen, is also retiring from the position of Duty Officer.  We wish both Bobby and Gwen good luck for the future and thank them both for their contribution to the life of BIBC.
Bobby is succeeded as Comp. Secretary by David Nixon, and we wish him well in his new post. We will be advertising for the post of Duty Officer shortly. So watch the noticeboards if you are interested.

Irish Ladies Titles went to the Triples of Cliodhna Eadie, Karen Woodside and Sandra Bailie; Cliodhna and Sandra also won the Pairs. Congratulations to them. Good luck to all the Ladies from BIBC who are heading to Swansea in March.

On the male side the Club Finals resulted in the following winners : J.Boyd won the Singles; P.Prunty and P.McEwan won the Pairs; M.Martin, J.McCullough and S.Martin won the Triples; N.Gibson, J.McCullough, J.Boyd and C.Craig won the Fours. Congratulations to them all, especially John McCullough who showed he is not just a pretty face behind the Duty Office!

The Inter-Stadium games are coming up: Co Antrim plays BIBC on Wed. 29th February at 6.30pm; Sunday March 4th Co Antrim plays Provincial Towns at 9.30am; Provincials play BIBC on March 4th at 2.30pm; all matches are in the Baker Stadium. Included in this series is a Junior Rink from each of the three stadiums.

Two negative points sadly – despite notices about mobile phones all round the Club, many members are still annoying those around them by continually receiving messages during games – surely it is not too much to ask for no ringtones for a period of two hours??
Secondly, there have been a few complaints about bad behaviour on the rinks during a game. I have renewed our notices on etiquette , but I would appeal to ALL our members to treat others as you would expect them to treat you eg walk up the centre of the rink and don’t obstruct the view of those in a neighbouring rink. Plus – again! – if you DO follow your bowl up the rink, remember it is a RULE that you must be at the head at the same time (or before) your bowl arrives!

News: The Umpires Association will shortly be running a course for new umpires. Watch the notice boards for details.

The Irish Ladies International team ‘take on’ a Select BIBC Men’s team on Sunday March 4th here at 9.30am (4 hour game). The BIBC Ladies ran a Table Quiz in the middle of February and over 100 partook of the quiz and refreshments – a great night was had raising over £1100 and the ladies wish to thank all the contributors and participants.

We are repeating the BIBC Open Pairs Competition which was launched last year – prize money again is approx. £1000. Dates: Saturday 31st March and Sunday April 1st. Forms are available in the Foyer.

PBA Qualifiers: April 13th -15th. Markers are desperately needed. Please inform the Office if you can help out.

May I wish all our members who play outdoors a pleasant and dry summer’s bowling, and hope to see them all back in September. We will be having Open Days as usual in August – primarily for new members.  Remember – it is in all out interests to boost our membership – so come back with a friend!