Important Dates

Saturday, 23 May 2020

May 23, 2020

BCC May Management Zoom Meeting

Bowls Central Coast has held it's first Management Meeting by video conference.  Management meetings are bimonthly meetings of the BCC Executive Committee and delegates from Clubs, BCC Committees and Affiliated bodies. 

Zoom is the video conferencing system that was used.   BCC has purchased a licence to hold meetings of up to 100 people for periods of over 40 minutes.  One constraint is that only the Secretary can schedule a meeting.   However the big advantage of Zoom is that persons who attend meetings do not have to register or down load any software on their computer.  All they need is the ability to access the Internet and click a link.   They also need a computer with a camera and microphone which is on all laptop computers.   People can also attend Zoom meetings using Smart phones, iPhones and iPads.

The meeting was successful in that all but one of the Executive Committee attended with 14 Clubs and one affiliated body (Zone 5 RSL) were represented.  Attendees discussed the latest situation with Lawn Bowls on the Central Coast for 90 minutes.  This is about the same time as we usually spend on Management meetings.

On the Central Coast where it is quite easy to travel to each other's Club, the advantages of video conferencing over normal meetings are not as pronounced as in other Zones.   Normal meetings are a more effective way to communicate.  You can pass items to each other and have one on one meetings over a beer after the meeting.   Clearly face to face is the preferred method of having a BCC meeting. Video conferencing works acceptably well which is good as it is the only way we can meet these days.

Wednesday, 20 May 2020

May 20, 2020

Lawn Bowls Allowed under Coronavirus Restrictions



Now there is no question mark over the legality of Clubs opening their greens for the purposes of lawn bowls.   Advice previously given by Bowls NSW and Women's Bowls NSW  that roll-up could be conducted by Clubs under certain strict social distancing conditions, was brought into question on the Central Coast.   Local Police advised that the Public Health Order had not been changed in line with  what Bowls NSW and Women's Bowls NSW was advising Clubs and  Clubs and Bowlers following their advice may be liable for substantial fines.

Yesterday (19/05/2020) Minister for Health and Health Research, Brad Hazzard signed an exemption to the Public Health Orders on Covid-19 Restrictions to allow lawn bowling subject to the following conditions:
1. Only 10 persons are permitted on a bowling green at any one time.
2. Notwithstanding the above, the maximum number of persons is exclusive of any staff and/or game officials.
3. At all times every individual on the bowling green (other than members of the same household) shall maintain physical distancing of 1.5 metres where practicable and safe.
4. The licensee of the registered club or pub must:
    a. take reasonable steps to record the name and phone number of each person on the premises to play lawn bowls;
    b. keep the records referred to above for 4 weeks; and
    c. provide a copy of the records to the Ministry of Health if required for the purpose of contact tracing.

Bowls Central Coast is most relieved that this issue has been resolved.  We thank our local police for their valid advice to our Clubs, and we thank Bowls NSW for liaising with the Department of Health to get this exemption for Lawn Bowls.

Monday, 18 May 2020

May 18, 2020

Vale Jack Griffiths

Regret to inform everyone that Bowls Central Coast Life Member Jack Griffiths passed away yesterday (17th May 2020).   Following a long bout of cancer, Jack died from a brain tumor.  He was 93 years old.  

Jack served on the then Central Coast District Bowling Association Selection Committee for  11 years of which he was Chairman of Selectors  for 9yrs  (1997-2005).  Jack was a foundation member of Chester Hill BC and moved to the Central Coast in 1989.   He was very much associated with the Avoca Beach Bowling Club. 

A funeral will not be held.  The family intend to scatter his ashes in the Mudgee area from where he originated.

Pictured below is Jack receiving his Life Members jacket from then president Kevin Dring.




Thursday, 23 April 2020

April 23, 2020

Address from the President

Hi Everyone, 

I hope you are all keeping safe and well during these difficult times, as the Australian and World bowls communities comes to terms with the extreme health threat of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

As you would be aware, we are being asked to socially distance ourselves in an effort to reduce the spread of the virus.  This has particular relevance to our bowling community as we have a high proportion of members (Approx. 70% are over 65 in Zone 15) with the highest health risk from COVID-19.  Given this risk and our ‘duty of care’, it is not surprising that our governing bodies (Bowls Australia and Bowls NSW) were quick to suspend all bowling activities.  I know that this initiative was received with a mixed reception since its introduction.  However, if we look at subsequent Government actions, to increasingly reduce allowable social interactions, the actions taken appear to be heading us in the right direction.

I appreciate that the suspension of bowling activities and the Government’s closure of registered clubs, restaurants, etc. has resulted in incredible hardships for our member Clubs and Boards that are being tasked with navigating the most appropriate path forward.  To this end there are a number of announcements of Government support relevant to these decisions and you might like to read a summary that Bowls Australia has recently put up on its website (www.bowls.com.au).

Whilst it is hoped that our member Clubs will remain financially viable and able to quickly recover to recommence activities once the COVID-19 risks have passed, it is also feasible that some Clubs faced with the current loss of income, may struggle to recover their pre COVID-19 level of success.  If any Clubs face this situation, I would ask that you contact the Executive Committee through our Zone Secretary so that we can try to work out whether any assistance can be co-ordinated at a Zone level.  I assure you that any approaches will be kept confidential.

Additionally, I would ask that all Clubs show leadership and enforce the suspension of all bowling activities, including roll-ups, as directed by our governing bodies, until we are advised differently.  I am reiterating this message, although I am sure that Clubs have been doing this and thereby placing no bowler at risk. The Zone Executive strongly believes that we all owe a ‘duty of care’ to our fellow Australians to do whatever we can to combat the spread of COVID-19.

I know that we would all like to revert back to some form of normal life as soon as possible, so we need to do all we can now to enable this. We have already communicated some of our concerns to Bowls NSW for the future progress of our return to bowls:
  • Essential Greens maintenance
  • Bowlers eligibility to play after 31st July 2020 (Fees)
  • Clubs may be unable to field Pennant sides in the 2nd half of the Year
  • The cost to Clubs to play two Pennant competitions in the same financial Year
  • Consideration to be given to not conducting the State Pennant Finals in 2020.
  • Change the date of Payment of Affiliation fees for all Clubs to 1st January 
Finally, I appreciate that self-isolation is frustrating and difficult for all of us and whilst we cannot physically socialise with each other at present, we need to look for other ways in which we can continue to engage with one another and do the best we can to stay positive.  If you or your Club have any innovative ideas to progress this engagement, please let us know so that they can be passed on for others to try.

Please stay safe and well.

Tony Hegyi
President

Friday, 17 April 2020

April 17, 2020

Maintenance of Central Coast Bowling Greens


Very pleased to advise that all the grass Bowling Greens of BCC Bowling Clubs are being maintained be it at a basic level.   The exception to this is The Greens The Entrance which has the added issue of the fire on 2nd March which severely damaged the Club and will undoubtedly mean that the greens can not be used for some time.  

News Update as at 29/04/2020 - Paul Stoicescu Secretary The Entrance Mens Bowls Committee has advised that greenkeepers are now tending to The Entrance greens.  Great news - our thanks to all who got this to happen. 

It is very important that our greens be maintained at the basic level.  Group Head Greenkeeper for Wyong Rugby League Club Group,Kim Smith, advises that bowling greens can not be left unmaintained particularly in March when the grass grows so quickly.  Even greens left for only one week will require a lot of time to recover.  Greens left for one month may not recover until the next regeneration season.   If we come out of this crisis at the end of May, the greens can be mowed, but the grass will not grow.     

BCC is very grateful to the licensed Clubs who have found the funds to maintain the greens even when the Club is closed loosing money.  In cases where the licensed Club has not been able to afford/justify maintaining the greens, the Bowling Committees have found a way to keep the greens maintained.   In some instances the the Men's and Ladies' Bowls Committees are paying for the greens to be maintained.  To the Committees and volunteers who have found a way to keep the the greens maintained, we say thank you.

When we finally get the green light to get back on the greens this Zone will be as ready as we can be.

Greenkeeper Shane White has the Everglades greens looking a picture.





Thursday, 16 April 2020

April 16, 2020

Vale Frank Pengelly OAM


Vale Francis William (Frank) Pengelly OAM


I have just been advised of the passing this morning 16th April 2020 of Frank Pengelly.    Frank aged 91 died from complications caused by a fall a few days ago.
Frank was a Life Member of Cronulla Bowling Club and the Everglades Country Club receiving an OAM in 1999 for services to lawn bowls in the Port Hacking District.  
Frank was the Patron and a Past President of Everglades Men’s Bowls Section and Past Deputy President of the Country Club.    He was an Umpire and the most highly regarded of Coaches.   He was not too bad on the green either winning the Open Singles at Everglades in 2004.
Frank even served for a period of time as the Returning Officer for all elections conducted at the AGM’s held around the beginning of the century of the then Central Coast District  Bowling Association
It is very sad that due to current social distancing laws during the Corvid19 Crisis that we can not join in on the celebration of Frank's life.    Frank is survived by his wife Noeleen.
Farewell Brother, we will miss you.  

Wednesday, 15 April 2020

April 15, 2020

Will we all be Unregistered after 31st July?

It's a question that has been asked by a number of bowlers on the Central Coast.  All but one of our Clubs have a financial year ending 31st June. What happens if the current laws remain in place past 31st July with Clubs remaining closed physically unable to pay their affiliation fees to Bowls NSW even if they have the funds.  Will almost all Central Coast bowlers be unregistered and unable to play in association events?  Indeed, will any of the Zone 15 Executive, Match or Selection Committees be unable to operate legally as all members of those Committees must be registered by their Club with Bowls NSW? 

The short answer is NO as Bowls NSW will ensure that it is OK.

Bowls Central Coast (Zone 15) has queried this with Bowls NSW who have advised us that they are working very hard to ensure that the effects upon clubs and members are minimised as much as possible.  We have already been advised that Clubs with a financial year closing in March, April, May and June will have their payments deferred until at least June.  CEO Greg Helm has assured us that "if a Club’s payment has been deferred, the eligibility of those bowling members is also extended until such time that the payment is due."

The Regulation that causes this issue is 2.5 (b) which states: 
“Any Club that has not paid all Annual Fees payable within one (1) month from the date of end of the club’s financial year shall be considered Unfinancial Members with the Association and all Individual Member and Registered Players of that Club shall be ineligible to enter or play or officiate in Association Events until the outstanding dues are paid.”  
As this is a Regulation it can be readily modified by decision of the Bowls NSW Board.