MAJOR NEWS: Sport NI have finally given us the go-ahead to lay two new carpets. After much consultation, the Committee has decided (for a whole variety of reasons) to go for blue carpets, so when you return for the new season, the Club’s appearance will be different! To know more come to the AGM!!

We will be having a grand opening, but more details later.

FOOTWEAR: you should be doing this anyway! Please do not enter the Clubhouse already wearing your bowling shoes – this only brings unnecessary dirt into the Clubhouse and onto the green. This particularly applies to our small smoking fraternity when they leave and enter the building for short periods. So – to everybody - please wipe your feet to protect our new carpets.

Also – correct footwear must be worn on the green!!

PS: no dropping bowls from any height onto the green from now on!!

General: We had, what everyone agreed, was a very good first Club Dinner. Approx. 80 attended the excellent dinner provided by Alberta and the prizegiving afterwards. All agreed to repeat for next year. You will note that at the end of this newsletter there is a list of notable dates for the year ahead – this is for your diary. The usual info is also included – can I appeal to all members to please return their league entry forms IN TIME! (see note later).

A new initiative for the Club this year is that we are introducing a gift aid form in the pack. If everyone, who can, would fill in this form and return it to the Office, once again we should be saving some money. Thank you in advance.

We are running two Summer leagues again this year, and looking at our so-called Ulster summer weather, we might be running more leagues next year!

AGM – our 48th has been set for Tuesday August 20th at 8pm. There will be the usual incentive of a year’s free subscription for one lucky person. Once again, I would appeal to all our members for a good turnout - important decisions are being taken on your behalf – so be part of it!

Another important development is that we have installed an electronic scoreboard on the bottom green. Instruction cards will be provided at the beginning of each league – but truthfully it is very simple! Believe me!

Coaching: will occur on the usual Monday evenings. There was a good turnout last season with both the Beginners Singles and Pairs being played for in a competitive spirit! This year: starts on Monday October 14th at 7.15pm. Once again, I would appeal to all our present members to bring along their friends, relatives – this is the first step to gaining new members.

Open Days: this year they are as follows – for new members only -Thursday 29th and Friday 30th August from 4.00pm until 11.00pm. We could be busy this year – with curious folk coming to see the new blue carpets.

Open Evenings for Club members: Tuesday 10th and Thursday 12th September from 4.00 pm until 11.00pm. Rinks cannot be reserved – it is first come first served.

Club Shop: has also been brought into the twenty first century – have a look! You can also shop online!  Competitive prices exist!!

Membership cards: this year these are being sponsored by Brian and Alberta. We are grateful for this, and as usual, I would appeal to our members to make use of our excellent restaurant facilities- think about birthday parties, anniversaries, wakes etc! The membership card can be used to obtain a restaurant loyalty card (all members should be carrying their cards anyway!) This is an active incentive - present your card to obtain the loyalty card and them take advantage of  the offers.

The first week of June saw an excellent Open Art Exhibition in the stadium – organised by the Arts Society of Ulster. This was a first class event, and gave the BIBC some good coverage as well.

We had the usual exams as well – again, a useful source of revenue.

Subs lists: if you are not a part of a rink (yet) and would like to be, you can add your name to the subs list for that particular league to indicate your availability. The lists appear on the notice boards for each league. Similarly, there will be a sheet on the notice board at Reception for any rink seeking players.  Remember, each rink can have two named subs.

Lady members: we are offering a league for a pairs event on Wednesday evenings.

Lisa Royal won a Silver Medal in the UK Indoor Singles Championships for Visually Impaired bowlers – well done!

This Newsletter is going out with the ‘summer packs’ as we call them – ie. all the forms you need (plus more) for next season. We would urge you all to please return the league entry forms ASAP, and certainly no later than Friday August 9th. The leagues will then be compiled by the Manager week commencing September 2nd and should be available, and on display from Monday 9thSeptember. The new league season starts on Monday September 16th . If any leagues are oversubscribed, preference will be given to rinks that entered the previous year.

Talking of the summer packs, we have yet again increased our summer mailshot to many of our members via e-mail, as this process saves the Club a lot of money. May I just once more appeal to any members who have not yet signed up to this system to please do so. Similarly, may I thank all those members who volunteer to collect and deliver by hand

the ‘brown envelopes’- again, a great saving of money.

Dates for your Diary:

1.  Open Days for New members – Thursday 29th and Friday 30th August, from 4-11pm.

2.  Open Days for Members- Tuesday 10th and Thursday 12th September from 4-11pm.

3.  Leagues start: Monday 16th September.

4.  IIBA (short mat) – Sat 28th September & Sat 5th October

5.  Sat. League starts on October 12th (not 5th as listed in entry form)

6.  IIBA (short mat) - Saturday 9th November.

7.  IIBA (short mat) – Saturday 8th& 15thMarch 2014.

8.  Coaching begins – Monday October 14th at 7.15pm.

9.  PBAs – Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th April 2014

10. Short Mat World Tour – 11th, 12th and 13th April 2014.