Over recent years, Summers have become increasingly full of music festivals – Glastonbury, Reading, V, etc but early Summer is the time for bowls festivals; notably at Scarborough and at Bodwellyan Castle, North Wales. These events are popular with wheelchair bowlers.

There was report about the Scarborough Festival in the last edition of Nationwide Bowler. “Don’t forget that next year’s Festival takes place between 8th and the 13th May,” said Wendy Campion, a Director at Scarborough IBC, “The Festival is open to bowlers of all disabilities. We firmly believe that bowls is one of the few sports where able bodied and disabled bowlers can compete with and against each other.”

Meanwhile at the Bodelwyddan Castle Hotel, England indoor international Janice Gower, a former organiser of the Scarborough Festival was running a new venture called the ‘May Festival of Bowls’ and she was very pleased with how it went. There were several bowls titles on offer but we will concentrate on the news of the wheelchair bowlers.

Welsh wheelchair bowler Kevin Woolmore completed a very notable double by winning both the Open Singles and the Wheelchair Singles. He also narrowly missed out on the pairs as well! One opponent was quoted as saying “you would have to put your bowls inside the jack to beat this man”!!!

Woolmore beat another wheelchair bowler in the Open Singles, Percy Powell by a narrow 3 shots. Both these players had seen off able-bodied opposition at the semi-final stage with Woolmore getting the better of Bolton crown- greener Ken Shaw and Powell wining against Darlington’s Barry Cooper.

Indeed, Woolmore almost made it a treble but had to settle for runners-up spot in the Pairs along with his wife and fellow Frith IBC bowler Barbara.

Janice Gower thanked all who had taken part and congratulated the winners, “The Festival’s new venue, the beautiful Bodelwyddan Castle in North Wales, came up to all expectations as being the perfect venue for the event! With the combination of fantastic weather and superb facilities, what a great week was had by all!”

Looking ahead to next year she said, “The festival is already taking entries for 2011. Play starts on Tuesday 10th May and Finals day is Sunday 15th May. To join in or for further information and an application form. Contact Janice Gower on (answer phone) or email

With both events being popular with wheelchair bowlers, it looks like some will have to make a choice as to which one to attend next year.