Rivals lend a hand to keep Leyland club bowling along

Leyland and Farington Club which has been closed since a wall collapsed in June.
Leyland and Farington Club which has been closed since a wall collapsed in June.

Bowlers are lending a hand to keep a rival team rolling after their clubhouse had to be ditched as unsafe.

Members of Longton VM have had a £300 whip round and are now hosting a race night on Friday to help neighbours Leyland and Farington recover from a partial collapse of their building.

“We might be rivals on the green, but as bowlers we’re all friends off it,” said Longton committeeman Howard Patterson.

“We were in a similar situation 30 years ago when our original clubhouse burned down and several local clubs helped us to keep going until we got on our feet again.

"So when we heard what had happened and what problems it had caused we felt we just had to help.

"We have offered them the use of our club on Friday to help raise more funds.”

L&F have carried on bowling despite the closure of their club on safety grounds. A 20-foot wall supporting the gable end of the building in Derby Street, Leyland came crashing down in June.

It is hoped the club will be rebuilt and re-opened, but the bowling section has soldiered on, fundraising to pay for temporary toilets, match refreshments and green maintenance.

And the proceeds of the race night will go towards keeping the bowls rolling during the coming season.

“We are doing our best to keep going,” said Andy Bentham. “And we want to say a huge thank you to Longton for their wonderful support.

“After the wall collapsed and the club was shut down we managed to finish last season and now we are planning for the new one.

"But it costs a lot to do it. We have seven teams with over 50 players, so it means a lot of fundraising.”