Information for Members

In this section of the website you can find information about how the club works and how the game is played.  It is intended to be a Member’s Handbook where you should be able to find out those bits of information which nobody told you about but everyone assumes you know already!  Each heading below is a link to the appropriate information; just click on it to find out.

This section is a work in progress, so if you have a question that isn’t answered here please contact Dave Bardsley or Linda Pillman who will try to answer your question and, if possible, put the information on the website to benefit other members.

Bowling at Ember - An OverviewHow to use the GreenBasics for BeginnersBowls EtiquetteBowls Club RulesDress CodeConduct of PlayClub Competition RulesLaws for the Sport of Bowls
Bowling at Ember – A Brief Overview.

Individual Practice or Group Play Any time the green is open and a rink is available. (The Green is closed for maintenance Tues, Thurs & Sat am. and some Wed mornings) Turn up to play on your own for practice or in a group. Either book rink ahead or turn up and book the next available rink. Smart/Casual
Club Roll Ups Every weekday afternoon starting at 2.30pm. Self-organised play with whoever turns up on the day. Arrive 2.15pm for 2.30pm and arrange using the rinks put aside for roll ups in the Rink Bookings Folder. Smart/Casual
Monday Club Night
(or Tuesday after Bank Holiday)
Every Monday Evening (except Bank Holidays)
5.30pm April/ Aug/Sept
6.00pm May/ June/ July
Organised roll-up and chance to catch up with club members.  Sometimes followed by fish & chips. Arrive 15m before start and enter name on list.  Teams & rinks drawn from bag. Late arriving ‘workers’ can be accommodated. Smart/Casual
Bank Holiday Drives Bank Holiday Monday afternoons. An organised roll-up. Sign up if there is a sheet or just turn up in good time for the start. Smart/Casual
Weekend Special Events Saturday or Sunday (May be all day) An organised event (e.g. Fun Day or Two Wood Trips) Sign up sheet on the Noticeboard or Availability Folder. Various according to event
Club Knock-Out Competitions
Enter by mid-May
Throughout the season.  Matches arranged by participants. Finals are held on Club Finals Weekend. Various singles, pairs and triples knock-out competitions. Fill in form that comes with the membership payment form. Arrange matches + book a rink to play within time limits according to the draw. Greys. Whites for Finals. Club shirts preferred.
Club Evening League Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday evenings. An internal mixed triples league. An ideal introduction for beginners.  Squads are made up by organiser and teams of 3 play each other. Sign-up sheet on the Noticeboard.
Organiser – Ken Homewood.
Ladies’, Men’s and Mixed Friendly Matches Weekday or weekend afternoons and occasional evenings Ladies’, Men’s or Mixed Friendly matches against other clubs both home and away. Triples or Rinks (Fours). Sign up in the appropriate Availability Folder.  Look out for team selection on boards or email. Usually Whites but occasionally Greys (See Fixture Card).  Club shirts preferred.
Racal Decca League Matches.
(3 Mixed Triples League)
Weekday or weekend afternoons or evenings. 3 mixed teams of Triples play other clubs in a league.  Home & Away. Sign up in Availability Folder. Look for team selection on boards or email. Greys or Whites (see fixture card).  Club shirts preferred.
Coronation Triples Sunday Morning Men’s Triples Knock out Competition organised by Ember and open to other clubs. Enter your own team on Noticeboard at the beginning of the season. Organiser – Dave Bardsley Greys.  Whites for Final.  Club shirts preferred.
North West Surrey External Leagues Various afternoons and evenings League matches in various formats played against other clubs. Jenny Baird runs the Ladies and Mixed leagues.
Tony Baker runs the  Friday evening Men’s single rink league
Greys.  Club shirts preferred.
North West Surrey Knock Out Competitions.
(Men’s, Ladies’ and Mixed)
Matches are arranged by participants within strict time limits. Various singles, pairs, triples and fours leading to finals at the end of August Entry form on Noticeboard. Entries close in April. Greys.  Whites for finals.  Club shirts preferred.
Surrey County Knock Out Competitions
(Men’s, Ladies’ & Mixed)
Matches are arranged by participants.  Some are on fixed dates. Singles, pairs, triples and fours.  Teams entered from clubs throughout Surrey. Can lead to National Finals at Leamington Spa or gaining your Surrey badge. Entry form on Noticeboard.  Entries close in January.
Linda Pillman can give guidance.
Greys.  Whites for finals.  Club shirts preferred.


The Club needs to manage the use of the Green to avoid excessive wear on the playing surface.  We do this by changing the direction of play, moving the position of the rinks across the width of the Green and spreading play across the individual rinks.  If you want to play a game or just have a roll-up you need to follow these procedures.

1)         Book a Rink
            This can be done in advance or on the day.  Go to the ‘Rink Bookings’ file (located by the notice boards).  Find the day you want to play and enter your name, game details and the time you want to play against the first available rink number in the left hand column.  If all the rinks have already been booked in the left hand column you should select the first available rink in the right hand column where the time does not clash with a previous booking.  PLEASE NOTE: You cannot choose a particular rink unless you are playing in a County or NWS championship match, you must always take the first available rink.

2)         Check Your Rink
            When you turn up to play you must check your booking in the file to ensure your rink has not been re-allocated or changed by the Greenkeepers.

3)         Set Up the Green
            As the rink positions change daily you may need to move the rink markers to their allocated positions.  You need to check the White Board in the Cabin which shows the direction of play (L= away from the Clubhouse, S= across the Clubhouse) and the colour to use for the rink dividers and centre lines for each day of that week.  If the rink markers are not in their assigned positions you must change them for ALL the rinks (not just the one you are playing on).

4)         Preparing for Play
            You will need to collect your mats and jack(s) from the Cabin.  There are also Pushers for gathering your bowls and 2-metre sticks should you need them.  Green Protective Mats are also available should they be needed.  Make sure that all of these are returned at the end of play.

5)         Protective Mats
            Also called Pitch Mats these green mats are to be used when the Green’s surface is soft or liable to damage from poorly delivered woods. If you notice anyone playing on your rink is causing damage to the surface you MUST put the mats in place.  These need to be placed at each end so that the front edges are 2 metres from the ditches and the mat is centred within the rink. The delivery mat should be placed on the ditch-side edge of the protective mat.  The Mats should be fixed down by plastic nails along the long edges.  Make sure that all the securing nails are collected when play is over.

There is a lot to learn about the game of Bowls, most of which will come from experience.  So, to get you started, here is some basic information, some jargon explained and some quick tips.

Health & Safety
-Be careful getting on and off the green, especially when wet – you will have been shown how.
-Bowls – know where they are on the green and keep out of their way.
-Bowls are heavy – a dropped bowl can hurt someone, damage the green or the bowl itself.
-First Aid Box + AED + Injury & Accident Book are in the clubhouse ‘phone booth.

-Dress comfortably so that your movement is not restricted.  Bowls is usually payed in ‘Greys’ or ‘Whites’ but casual dress is acceptable while you are learning.
-Shoes must be flat with a smooth sole – check with the coaches if you are using trainers.

The Game
-Bowls is played on a ‘Green’ which is surrounded by a ‘Ditch’ and raised ‘Bank’.
-The Green is divided by white markers into playing strips, the ‘Rinks’.
-A small, round white or yellow ‘Jack’ is rolled (’delivered’) down the rink from the ‘Mat’ and centred a minimum 23m from the mat.
-‘Bowls’ are shaped with a ‘Bias’ so that they take a curved path towards the jack.  As a Bowl slows down it turns in towards the ‘bias,’ indicated with a smaller disc on the Bowl and usually highlighted with a small coloured sticker.  Sometimes a Bowl is referred to as a ‘Wood’
-Players take it in turns to ‘deliver’ their Bowl smoothly, i.e. with no bounce, from the ‘mat’ at one end of the ‘rink’ to the ’jack’ at the other end.  The objective is to deliver the Bowl with the correct force (‘Weight’) along the correct ‘line’ so that it comes to rest in the desired place at the ‘Head’.
-The player or team with one or more bowls closer to the jack than their opponent wins that ‘End’, scoring one ‘Shot’ for each counting bowl.

Formats of the Game-
-Singles – 2 Players with 4 bowls each, the winner being the first to reach 21 shots
-Pairs – 2 teams of 2, with 4 bowls each, the winner being the higher score after 21 ends
-Triples – 2 teams of 3, with 3 bowls each, scored over 18 ends
-Fours or ‘Rinks’ – 2 teams of 4, with 2 bowls each, scored over 21 ends
-In a team game the ‘Lead’ is the first to play, then the ‘Number 2’, then the ‘3’, finally the ‘Skip’.

Some More Jargon
‘Stance’ = How you stand on the Mat.  You should be balanced and comfortable on the mat, with the feet and body pointing along the ‘line’ on which the bowl or jack is going to travel.
‘Delivery’ = How you deliver the Bowl.  It should be smooth, with the Bowl rolling from your hand without bouncing.  You should aim to be consistent in your delivery.
‘Follow through’ = The natural, smooth movement of the delivery arm following the line of the bowl after the bowl has been released – important!
‘Forehand’ Delivery of a bowl so the curve of the bowl is from right to left towards its objective (for right handed players).
‘Backhand’ Delivery of a bowl so the curve of the bowl is from left to right towards its objective (for right handed players).
‘Head’ The group of the jack + bowls.

Good manners and supporting behaviour towards team mates and opponents alike are appreciated.  Compliment, don’t criticise.
-Do not distract the bowler by moving or talking.
-Always stand behind at the mat while not bowling or behind the jack and away from the ‘head’ at the other end.
-Admit a fluke with grace, don’t praise outrageous luck, don’t wave opponents bowls through the head.
-Once a bowl has come to rest ‘Possession of the ‘Rink’ at both ends passes to the opponents i.e. you should be clear of the mat and head and not be between the mat and the head when it’s not your team’s turn.
-Don’t walk past the end of a rink when a player is about to bowl towards you.
-Concentrate and enjoy!


Bowls is a social game with a number of unwritten conventions that underline play.  In essence it’s all about sportsmanship and good manners (and occasionally gritting your teeth!)  In order to keep things friendly we offer the following tips and guidance:

  1. Dress correctly for all games.
  2. When a game, be it a roll-up or match, is due to start at a certain time be on the green and ready to play at that time.
  3. Greet your own team members and opponents at the start of the game and congratulate or compliment them at the end of play. Shaking hands before a match and at its conclusion is part of the fine tradition of the game.
  4. Compliment your opponent on a good shot.
  5. Admit a fluke with grace.
  6. Stand still when a player is on the mat.
  7. Do not talk or make a noise behind the mat when a player is about to deliver a bowl.
  8. Remain behind the mat or head when it is not your turn to play. Always remember that as soon as your bowl has come to rest possession of the rink passes to your opponent.
  9. If you are skipping a rink do not impede the other skip’s view.
  10. Keep to your own rink. Do not become a wanderer and distract other bowlers.
  11. Walk down the centre of your rink when changing ends and avoid walking through the head.
  12. On sunny days be aware of your shadow. Do not let it mask the jack nor permit it to fall in front of the mat when a player is about to bowl.
  13. Try to avoid obscuring boundary pegs, rink plates or rink markers.
  14. Never criticise your opponent, the greens or your own team members. If you cannot say anything positive don’t say anything at all!
  15. Pay attention to the game. Nothing can be more frustrating to your team-mates than to have them feel that you are not giving your full attention and best efforts to the game by your lack of concentration. Save your socialising until after the game.
  16. Always appear to be enjoying the game.
  17. Stand well back from the head when drive shots are being played and warn others on adjacent rinks of the fact.
  18. If the jack goes into the ditch during play all players should stand off the green and leave a clear view of the jack marker.
  19. Learn the Laws of the Game and abide by them.
  20. Be a gracious winner and a good loser.
  21. Help clear bowls once an End is complete and the score agreed.
  22. Pick up the mat once the End is completed and place it off the rink.

MORE INFORMATION:  Laws of the Sport of Bowls


Every club has to have its rules, so here are ours.  They only relate to the Bowls Section; Ember Sports Club has its own rules (which are not included here).
These Rules were originally approved at The Club’s Annual General Meeting on 1st November 2008.
– Rule 5b was amended 31/10/2009
– Rules 3,4,5a,5e,6f were amended 30/10/2010
– Rule 9 was added 25/10/2014
– Rule 6f was amended 4/11/2017
– Rule 5a was amended 12/4/2024

 1 Title 
Ember Bowls Club, hereinafter referred to as ‘The Bowls Club’, is a section of Ember Sports Club, hereinafter referred to as ‘E.S.C.’, formed in accordance with the Rules of that club.  The Bowls Club shall be affiliated to Bowls England, the Surrey County Bowling Association and the Surrey County Women’s Bowling Association.
2 Management
The affairs of the Bowls Club shall be managed by a Bowls Committee, hereinafter referred to as the ‘Committee’, which shall have the responsibilities and powers provided in these Rules.  The Rules may only be altered or added to if approved by at least two-thirds of the votes cast by those members entitled to vote who are present and voting at an Annual General or Extraordinary General Meeting.
3 Membership
Membership of the Bowls Club shall be subject to the Rules of E.S.C. and the Rules of the Bowls Club.  Completed application forms for membership and subscriptions at the appropriate rate should be sent to the Secretary of the Bowls Club.  All applications will be presented for consideration by both the Committee and the Management Committee of E.S.C.  All applicants must be ‘played-in’ by an officer of the Bowls Club or other person nominated by the Committee. The Committee may limit the number of Bowls Club members and manage any waiting list.
On the recommendation of the Committee, on due notice at any General Meeting of the Bowls Club, any person may be elected as an Honorary Life Member of the Bowls Club in recognition of services rendered to the Bowls Club.  An Honorary Life Member of the Bowls Club shall be entitled to membership of the Bowls Club for his or her life (unless such membership is earlier terminated under these Rules) for so long as they remain members of E.S.C. without payment of the Bowls Club Subscription. Honorary Life Members shall otherwise have the same rights and obligations as Members of the Bowls Club.
4 Subscriptions and Fees
Subscriptions for membership of the Bowls Club shall be fixed annually by the Committee.  Subscriptions are due and payable on the first day of April or by new members on application for membership.  Reduced rates for part-year membership may be allowed at the discretion of the Committee.  The Bowls Club subscription for an Honorary Life Member shall be waived for the duration of their membership from the year following their election.  Unpaid subscriptions shall be dealt with in accordance with the provisions of E.S.C. Rules.  Other income, such as green fees and visitors’ fees, shall also be credited to the Bowls Club.
5 Committee
(a) The Committee shall consist of a Chairman, the Ladies’ Captain and Vice Captain, the Men’s Captain and Vice Captain, the Secretary, Assistant Secretary, Treasurer, Match Secretary, Green Ranger, the National and County Delegate (s), and three other members, all of whom shall be elected by members of the Bowls Club at the Annual General Meeting.
(b) All Committee members shall retire prior to the election of the Committee at the Annual General Meeting and shall be eligible for re-election and appointment.  The chairman may not normally serve for more than 3 consecutive years.
(c) The Committee shall meet at least six times in any year.
(d) The quorum for a Committee Meeting shall be seven for two years commencing 2008/9 and then five thereafter.
(f) Expenditure in connection with the Bowls Club must be authorised by the Committee.
(g) The Committee shall appoint a representative from the Bowls Club to the E.S.C. Management Committee.
(h) The Committee may assign specific tasks to members to assist the management of the Bowls Club.
(i) The Committee may appoint a Club Coach, preferably a member who holds a recognised coaching certificate.
(j) The Committee may appoint sub-committees for specific purposes and with defined powers.
(k) The Committee may co-opt a member, who shall have voting rights, to fill any vacancy on the Committee.
(l)  The Committee may co-opt a member or members, who shall have no voting rights, to assist in the conduct of its activities.
(m) The Committee shall deal with all matters affecting the welfare and operation of the Bowls Club not covered by these Rules.
(n) The Committee shall determine any amendments to the Conduct of Play it may consider necessary.
(o) Any member who is a national or county delegate appointed at an AGM or who is a committee member at national or county level is entitled to a post on the Committee with full voting rights.
6 Annual General Meeting
(a) The Annual General Meeting of the Bowls Club shall be held as soon as possible after 30th September, the date to be determined by the Committee and posted on the Bowls Club’s notice board at least two weeks before the end of the season.  The Agenda shall be sent to each member not less than fourteen days prior to the meeting.
(b) Any member who wishes a particular matter, which may lead to the taking of a vote, to be included in the business of the meeting shall give notice in writing to the Secretary at least 30 days prior to the meeting.   No binding decision can be made at an AGM on any matter not so notified except where the Chairman deems that it is a matter of extreme importance and urgency.
(c) The quorum for an Annual General Meeting shall be 20 members.
(d) Members are entitled to vote in person at an Annual General Meeting provided they have paid their current subscriptions.
(e) A resolution, not affecting the Rules, put to the vote shall be decided by a simple majority of members present.  See also Rule 2.
(f) Nominations for the Committee must have a proposer and a seconder and must be notified to the Secretary prior to the meeting, the consent of the nominee having first been obtained.  In the event of no nominations for any rôle being made prior to the meeting nominations, which must have a proposer and seconder, may be accepted at the meeting, the consent of the nominee having been obtained.
7 Extraordinary General Meeting
(a) The Committee may, at its own discretion, and shall on the written request of 20 members qualified to vote call an Extraordinary General Meeting of the members at any time, giving not less than 21 days notice by a circular letter specifying the object of the meeting, to which any discussions shall be confined.  No binding decision can be made at an EGM on any matter not so notified.
(b) The quorum for an Extraordinary General Meeting shall be 20 members.
(c) Members are entitled to vote in person at an Extraordinary General Meeting provided they have paid their current subscriptions.
(d) The vote of two-thirds of the votes cast in favour of a resolution by members entitled to vote who are present and voting at such a meeting shall be final.
8 Visitors
Subject to such Regulations as the Committee may determine members may introduce visitors to play bowls and shall be responsible for payment of the appropriate visitor’s fee.  Such members shall enter the visitor’s name in the Visitors Book and place the fee in the box provided for the purpose prior to playing.  Visitors must abide by the Conduct of Play.
9 Discipline
Matters of Discipline are dealt with in line with Bowls England Regulation 9.
MORE INFORMATION: Bowls England – Disciplinary


The Ember Bowls Club Rules and Conduct of Play Regulations delegate to the Club Committee the ability to determine the Dress Code for club matches, competitions and general play.
The code applies to all bowlers, markers and umpires (unless they are wearing approved qualified Marker’s or Umpire’s uniform) using the Club’s green or representing the Club at other venues.

Of key importance for all bowlers is footwear.  FOOTWEAR used on the Green must be flat-soled and heel-less e.g. bowls shoes, which are used by the vast majority of bowlers.

There are 3 dress ‘categories’ for playing rollups or internal or external matches.

  1. Smart casual.  Casual dress code doesn’t quite mean ‘wear whatever you like’, but it does mean that you should dress for comfort without worrying about formality or regulations. So any top be it colourful or plain and trousers/shorts/skirts in any colour. The guidance is, however, in line with the smart casual criteria so no vests, denim jeans and denim jackets.
    When? Rollups, charity days, Club nights, Ember Evening League.
  1. Greys.  The emphasis is on grey and white. So a white top (plain or button-fronted shirt with collar and sleeves), or Club shirt if you own one, for Club competitions and Club friendlies. Grey shorts/trousers/skirts with preferably mainly white or grey socks. Additional clothing (eg jackets, pullovers, wet weather items) preferably white/mainly white.
    When? Playing or marking in Club competitions (except the Ember Evening League and Finals weekend), Club friendlies against other clubs except when ‘Whites’ specified. Matches in the N W Surrey Leagues or Surrey Competitions (Club shirts best if possible).
  1. Whites.  The most formal category! So preferably a Club shirt but, if not, a white top (plain or button-fronted shirt with collar and sleeves) and white shorts/trousers/skirts with preferably mainly white socks. Additional clothing (eg jackets, pullovers, wet weather items) preferably white/mainly white.
    When? Matches against other clubs where ‘Whites’ specified, marking or playing in Club finals weekend. External finals eg N W Surrey and Surrey.

The Committee will consider requests from individual members to be exempted from any of these regulations where individual circumstances warrant it. Any such requests should be made through the Club Secretary. The Committee does not bind itself to agree to any such requests and will consider each on its merits.

Updated 16 October 2023

The regulations governing conduct of play at Ember Bowls Club were originally adopted as an addendum to the Club Rules approved on 1/11/2008. The Club Rules authorise the Bowls Committee to amend these regulations.

  • In March 2011 a Dress Code was approved by the Committee pursuant to Regulation 3.


  1. All games shall be played in accordance with the Laws authorised by Bowls England.
  2. The green shall be for the exclusive use of the members of the Club and any properly introduced visitor.  No-one other than bowlers or a person officiating in the particular games will be allowed on the green.
  3. Bowlers, markers and umpires, when on the green, must wear smooth-soled, heel-less footwear in accordance with the Laws of Bowls England.  Dress for bowlers, markers and umpires for Club matches, all competitions and play shall be determined by the Committee.
  4. The Green Ranger has the authority to control the use of the green.  They will decide whether or not at any time the green is fit for play and will take any precaution to safeguard the surface of the green as they may consider advisable.  The Green Ranger may appoint another member, normally of the Committee, to act for them in their absence.
  5. Any bowler who has a playing problem which, if not corrected, may damage the playing surface is expected to seek and to comply with the advice of the Club Coach or fellow bowlers.  It is the responsibility of all bowlers to ensure damage to the green is limited by the use of protective mats as necessary.
  6. Normally the green will be open from 10.00am to dusk, provided that no play will interfere with the maintenance of the green.  Any variation in playing times will be determined by the Green Ranger in consultation with the Committee.
  7. If members are waiting to use the green no bowler shall occupy a rink for more ends than are necessary to complete the game under the Laws of Bowls England.
  8. The Captains shall be responsible for selection of teams for Club matches, arrange all Club competitions and the general arrangements for finals days.  The Captains may delegate specific duties to a Club Member(s).
  9. Subject to licensing laws and the Rules of the E.S.C. the amenities of the E.S.C. are available to all members and properly introduced visitors.
  10. Bad language and/or inappropriate behaviour by a member will not be tolerated and could lead to imposition of the E.S.C. Rule 13(1) and 13(2) on expulsion or suspension of membership.  The member shall have the right to request a hearing before a meeting of the Committee.
  11. The Committee shall deal with any matter which is not covered by the Conduct of Play and which does not require the general consent of the membership before implementation.
  12. No Club Competitions may be booked for a Monday evening however rinks for External Competitions may be booked.

MORE INFORMATION: Laws of the Sport of Bowls

These Rules were first approved by the Bowls Committee on 16th March 2013 and amended subsequently.  This version was approved by Committee on 9th January 2023.  In adopting these Rules the Committee intend that the spirit of fairness and sportsmanship should prevail in their application.

1)            These rules cover the following competitions:
a) Men’s Championship Singles. Played to 21 shots and open to all male club members.
b) Ladies’ Championship Singles. Played to 21 shots and open to all female club members.
c) Men’s Championship Pairs. Played over 18 ends and open to all male club members.
d) Ladies’ Championship Pairs. Played over 18 ends and open to all female club members.
e) Mixed Pairs Championship. Played over 18 ends and open to pairs consisting of one female and one male club member.
f) Men’s Handicap Singles Competition. Played to 21 shots and open to all male club members.
g) Ladies’ Handicap Singles Competition. Played to 21 shots and open to all female club members.
h) Men’s Drawn Handicap Pairs Competition. Played over 18 ends and open to all male club members.
i) Ladies’ Drawn Handicap Pairs Competition. Played over 18 ends and open to all female club members.
j) Open Drawn Handicap Pairs Competition. Played over 18 ends and open to all club members.
k) Open Drawn ‘Australian’ Pairs Handicap Competition. Played over 16 ends and open to all club members.
l) Mixed Two-Wood Championship Singles. Played over 21 ends and open to all club members.
m) Open Mixed Drawn Triples Competition. Played over 18 ends and open to all club members.
n) Mixed Drawn Two-Wood Triples Competition. Played over 10 ends and open to all club members.
o) Non-Winners Singles Championship. Played to 21 shots and open to all members who have not won any Ember Bowls Club pairs or singles competition, including handicapped events, in the preceding 5 years.

2)    All competitions will be overseen by Competition Secretary(ies), appointed by the Bowls Committee, who will arbitrate in any disputes regarding the playing of matches or the interpretation of these Rules, including the disqualification of players and the awarding of victory by walk-over in un-played matches, and whose decisions will be final and binding on all entrants.

3)    Entries to club competitions must be received by the Competition Secretary(ies) by the date notified on the entry forms and be accompanied by the appropriate entry fee.

4)    In drawn competitions where it is not possible to allocate all entrants into a team due to the format of the competition, a ballot will be held to determine which entries will be accepted.  All unsuccessful entrants shall have their entry fee refunded.

5)    The Competition Secretary(ies) may cancel any competition if they consider that insufficient entries have been received.

6)    Prior to the draw for the season’s competitions the Bowls Committee will allocate a Handicap Score to each club member that shall be final and remain in place for the whole of the season.

7)    In Handicap Singles Competitions each competitor will start play with a shots score equivalent to their Handicap Score

8)    In Handicap Team Competitions the Team Handicap Score will be the aggregate of their individual Handicap Scores.  The Team with the higher aggregate score will start play with a shots score equivalent to the arithmetic difference between their Team Handicap Score and that of their opponents. 

9)    All competition draws are to be made in the presence of the competition secretary(ies) plus a minimum of one club member as an independent witness.  In circumstances where the competition secretary(ies) are absent the Committee may nominate replacement(s).

10)  Where any competition entry does not equal a numerical power of 2 a preliminary round shall be played to reduce the field to next power of 2 below.  The preliminary round should first draw the appropriate number of byes followed by entrants or teams in turn until the preliminary round is filled.  The remaining entrants or teams will then be drawn in turn, gaining a bye into the first round.

11)  Draws for Championships shall be made on an un-seeded basis with all entrants being drawn in turn from the one ballot, taking their place in turn on the competition draw sheet.

12)  In the Drawn Ladies’ and Men’s Handicap Pairs Competitions the entrants shall be divided based on their handicap into two equal pools, dividing the higher handicapped entrants from the lower.  Where the boundary between the two pools occurs within a single handicap rating the competition secretaries may use their discretion to allocate players in that handicap rating between the pools.  The competition draw will pair one player from each pool into a team and that team will then take its place on the competition draw sheet.

13)  In the Open Drawn ‘Australian’ and Handicap Pairs Competitions the entrants shall be divided into two equal pools on the same basis as set out in Rule 12. 
a) If the total number of male entrants exceeds or equals the number of female entrants the draw procedure should be, in order-
-Pair each female in the low-handicapped pool with a high-handicapped male entrant into a team.
-Pair each female in the high-handicapped pool with a low-handicapped male entrant into a team.
-Pair each remaining high-handicapped male entrant with a low-handicapped male entrant into a team.
-Having established the teams, the competition should then be drawn on an un-seeded basis and entered on the competition draw sheet.
b) If the number of female entrants exceeds the number of male entrants the procedure set out in Rule 13a should be repeated with roles reversed between males and females.

14)  In the Open Mixed Drawn Triples Competition the entrants shall be divided into three equal pools on the same handicap basis as set out in Rule 12.  The competition draw will take in turn one player from each pool to constitute the team and that team will then take its place on the competition draw sheet.

15)  In the Mixed Two-Wood Triples the Competition Secretaries shall designate one third of the entrants as Team Captains (based on handicap) and draw the competition as set out in Rules 10 and 11.  Each Captain shall then, in turn, draw a player of the opposite gender from the remaining entrants to join their team. Finally, each Captain shall draw, in turn, a third player at random from the remaining entrants to complete the team.

16)  All matches shall be played in accordance with the Laws of the Sport of Bowls as published by World Bowls unless modified by any local rules included in these rules.

17)  All competitions will be played on a knockout basis with an open draw for the first and preliminary rounds with the winner(s) progressing to the next round up until the Final.

18)  All competition matches are to be played in rounds to be completed by the set date notified on the competition draw sheets. except for The Mixed Two-Wood Triples Tournament which is to be played to completion on a fixed date published in the club’s fixture list.  The Competition Secretary(ies) may allow an extension of the date at their discretion.  Failure to play by the due date may lead to the elimination of players or teams.

19)  All Finals matches, except for the Mixed Two-Wood Triples Tournament, will be played over the designated Finals Weekend published in the club’s fixture list.

20)  All competition matches are to be played at Ember Bowls Club.

21)  No matches shall be arranged such that they start or extend after 6.00pm on Monday evenings other than Bank Holiday Mondays.

22)  The topmost (odd numbered) named player or team on the competition draw sheet is “The Challenger,” the second (even numbered) player or team is “The Opponent.”
a) The Challenger is responsible for arranging a mutually acceptable date and time for the match to be played, which must be prior to the closing date for the round notified on the competition draw sheet.
b) The Challenger is responsible for booking a rink for play and, in singles competitions, for providing a marker. The person nominated as marker must be acceptable to both players.
c) If, by the set closing date for a round, any match remains un-played and has not had a date arranged and entered in the rink booking diary the Competition Secretary(ies) may award the match to the Opponent. However, if, in the opinion of the Competition Secretary(ies), the Challenger has, in the circumstances, taken all reasonable steps to arrange the fixture in time, the Competition Secretary(ies) may grant an extension to the closing date or award the match to the Challenger.

23)  The winner of each match is responsible for entering their name into the next round on the draw sheet and, if known, advising their next opponent(s) of the need to arrange their match.

24)  No member may enter a competition if, at the time of entry, they are aware that they will not be available to play on the designated Finals Weekend published in the Club’s fixture list.

25)  If, during the season, a player becomes aware that they will not be available to play on the Finals Weekend they should immediately withdraw from the competition.  In singles competitions they should award their next opponent victory by a walk-over.  In team competitions the team may, subject to Rule 28, appoint a substitute as a replacement or, otherwise, withdraw from the competition by awarding their next opponents victory by a walk-over.

26)  If during the season a player becomes aware that they may not be able to meet all or any of their commitments to play matches by or at the designated time they should selectively withdraw from any remaining competitions to a level where they feel they can meet their commitments.  Any such withdrawals should be made prior to the semi-final.  In team competitions the team may, subject to Rule 28, appoint a substitute as a replacement for the remainder of the competition.

27)  Where a player becomes temporarily unavailable for play during the season (e.g. due to holidays or illness) they should advise any opponents and team members that they are scheduled to play with or against and, if necessary and subject to Rule 28, arrange for a substitute or seek an extension of the closing date for the round with the Competition Secretary(ies).  Failure to do so may lead to any matches affected being awarded to their opponents.

28)  Substitutes may only be used in team competitions and only with the agreement of the Competition Secretary(ies), whose approval should be obtained prior to any match being played.
a) A Substitute may only be used where a player becomes unavailable for play on Finals Weekend or is otherwise unavailable during the season.
b) A Substitute in any competition may not have previously played in that competition.
c) A Substitute appointed under Rule 27 can be replaced by the original team member at any stage in the competition.
d) A team must contain at least one member of the original team that played in the first round match of the competition.
e) In Championship Competitions a team may only appoint a substitute who would otherwise qualify for the competition.
f) In Drawn Pairs and Triples Competitions a team may appoint a substitute who would otherwise qualify for that competition and who has the same or arithmetically higher Handicap rating as the player they are replacing. In circumstances where such a substitute player cannot be identified the Competition Secretary(ies) may, at their discretion, allow a substitute with an arithmetically lower Handicap to be accepted.  In Handicap Competitions, the Team Handicap will be adjusted accordingly.  If a suitable qualified substitute cannot be identified the team should withdraw from the competition.

MORE INFORMATION: Laws for the Sport of Bowls (Opens in new window)

Bowls is a simple game. Here it is explained in 64 pages! (Opens in a new window)

Bowls England have also made a number of Regulatio covering aspects of the game and its governance.  If you have time to spare these links will take you to them (Opens in a new window).
Bowls England Regulations 1-49 (General),
Bowls England Regulations 50-70 (Championship/Competition Rules & Regulations)

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