The Founding and Brief History of
HANGLETON BOWLING CLUB
1954 - The Beginning
On the wet evening of Tuesday 24 August 1954 the Mayor of Hove, Councillor A H Dilley, sent down two woods to officially open a new seven rink bowling green in Knoll Recreation Ground, Hangleton.
Formerly known as Hudson’s Tip this had been an area where the rubbish from Hove was dumped and the transformation into a pleasant park with a panoramic view of the seas to the south and, until future development obstructed it, a glimpse of the rolling downs to the north, was the work of the Council to provide an amenity for the northern inhabitants of the town. The total cost, including purchase of the land, lay out and construction - including conversion of a war time civil defence hut into a pavilion for sportsmen and public toilets - was £6,584 However the Ministry of Education made a grant of £1,129 towards these cost reducing the figure to £5,455 The green was sea-washed Cumberland turf which had been grown from seed by the Council’s Parks and Gardens Dept. and the first groundsman was Mr S W Grice who had been Sussex Singles Champion two years earlier.
[Evening Argus: August 1954]
A Preliminary Meeting, convened by Mr A J Sumner, to consider the formation of a Lawn Bowling Club was held at the bowling green in Knoll Recreation Ground on 23 October 1954 attended by: Councilor Gosling, Messrs Annand, Chatterley, Dew, Diffin, Gibbins, Idle, Legg, Massey, Mortimer, Moses, Nichol, Spinks, Styles, Sumner, Ward, Mrs Legg, Miss Parton, Mrs Spinks and Mrs Sumner together with Councilor Chesshire and Mr Hyland - Chairman and Superintendent respectively of the Parks and Garden Committee of Hove Corporation.
This was followed on 4 December 1954 at 2.30pm by the Inaugural Meeting of Hangleton Bowling Club. Founder Members in attendance were: Councilor C F Gosling, Messrs J C Annand, W H Ashby, W M Carr, W Chatterley, G W Dew, H Mortimer, J Nichol, L G Ridge, S H Spinks, A J Sumner, C A Wiltshire, Miss M Parton, Mrs Spinks and Mrs Sumners. Apologies were received from: Councilor Chesshire and Messrs R N Massey, F H Gibbins and Mr and Mrs Legg.
The meeting elected the Club’s first Committee:
Chairman: Clr CF Gosling; Secretary: AJ Sumner; Treasurer: SH Spinks;
Match Secretary: JC Annand; and four Members: CA Wiltshire, G Dew, H Mortimer and L Ridge.
The positions of Captain and Vice Captain were left for the Committee to appoint.
The first A.G.M. on 19 November 1955 was attended by 25 members: Councilor C F Gosling, Messrs Annand, Buckland, Carr, Chatterley, Cooper, Dawson, Dew, Feist, Fuller, Markes, Massey, Mortimer, Moses, Ridge, Shaw, Spinks, Starr, Watkins and Wiltshire and Madames Cooper, Fuller, Ridge, Spinks and Sumner. Apologies from Mr Sumner and Mr and Mrs Legg.
The second A.G.M. On 21 November 1956 was the first to be held in the evening and attracted slightly less members : Councilor C F Gosling, Messrs Annand, Baguley, Buckland, Carr, Chatterley, Cooper, Dawson, Dean, Dew, Feist, Massey, Mortimer, Parker, Ridge, Spinks, Starr, Tye, Watkins and Wiltshire and Madames Ridge, Spinks and Starr. Apologies from Mr and Mrs Legg., Ashby, Page and Watkins.
In 1954 under Club Rule 3 each year the Mayor of Hove was invited to be Club President. This was changed at the fifth A.G.M. on 24 November 1959 when the position of President was added to the Club Officers elected annually under Rule 4 At the same time the sitting mayor was invited to become Club Patron.
The 1958 AGM noted the Club had been invited to play the English Bowling Federation Touring team at Hangleton on 21 May 1959 but there was a requirement that all players ‘must wear white flannels’
At the 1959 meeting the club voted to introduce its first dress code ‘that Whites be worn next season when playing against teams who already play in Whites.’ Whites remained the Club’s dress code for 47 years until 2005 when it was agreed shirts with coloured collars and cuffs be would be introduced in 2006 for all League matches. A year later this was revised so coloured shirts were worn for all matches. Then in 2018 the Club Management Committee agreed to adopt modern design shirts which were purchased with substantial financial support from a local Sponsor.