Extract from an open letter to WBIBC from Margaret Young, Secretary of Heartstart Thatcham, 04.04.2021

“It is with a sad heart that I have to tell you that after almost 8 years Heartstart Thatcham will ‘close it’s doors’ within the next few weeks.  This has been a decision that has not been taken lightly but given the events of the past year or so it has left us with no choice.  We have been fortunate enough to train far more people than we ever expected and to raise sufficient funds to place more than 60 defibrillators around the West Berkshire area (not bad going when our aim was originally 4 – 6).

The last donation from WBIBC, together with donations from elsewhere, has enabled us to place one last defibrillator . . . it has been donated to Kennet School and placed within their PDR unit (special needs) in memory of a pupil who sadly passed away just prior to Christmas.  The little bit of money that was left over has been donated to the Cardiac Care Unit at Royal Berkshire Hospital.

On behalf of Heartstart Thatcham please would you be so kind as to pass on our sincere thanks and appreciation for the help and encouragement shown to us over the last few years; your support has been second to none – you have been kind enough to support us alongside supporting the interests of WBIBC . . . we cannot thank you enough.”




Following the Prime Minister’s Statement to Parliament this week on how the Government propose to ease lockdown restrictions and offer the Country a route back to a more normal life, the EIBA can summarise what this means for the sport of Indoor Bowls in England: –

Step 1   No earlier than 29th March 2021               

  • Indoor Bowls Clubs to remain closed, unless Clubs have arrangements with schools for pupils to participate in after school clubs.

Step 2   No earlier than 12th April 2021

  • Indoor bowls clubs will be able to open and have individuals or people from the same household play on the same rink.
  • Club shops will be able to open.
  • Club bar and restaurant only able to serve people outside via table service.

Step 3   No earlier than 17th May 2021

  • Indoor bowls clubs will be able to allow up to 6 bowlers from different households or members of 2 households on a rink.
  • Club Bar and Restaurant will be able to serve people indoors via table service for up to 6 people or members of 2 households.

Step 4   No earlier than 21st June 2021

  • It is hoped that all limits on social contact are removed and Indoor Bowls can return to normal.

At all stages the Government will make decisions on specific restrictions such as social distancing, face coverings, vaccination certificates etc so these will need to be factored in the planning prior to any re-opening.

Please note that the provisional dates for each step may change if the government believes it is not safe to move to the next phase.

The EIBA will continue to update its Clubs, Counties and bowlers once more details are received for each step.

Peter Thompson, Chief Executive EIBA

Issued on 25/02/21


We hope you all managed to make the most of your Christmas and New Year celebrations, despite the restrictions of Tier 4. I’m sure we are all glad to see the back of 2020. It’s been a horrible year.

With the roll out of the vaccination programme, we can now look forward to a much happier, healthier and normal 2021.

We will, of course, re-open the club once we are told by the Government that it is safe to do so. Like you, we don’t know when this will be, but the future looks brighter.

With best wishes for a happier and healthier 2021.

Stay well, stay safe

The Directors
The Bowls Committee


The Government has announced that Berkshire will move into Tier 3 from Saturday, 19th December. The club will therefore remain closed until further notice.

It is worrying for us all that the number of people testing positive for Covid-19 in West Berkshire is rising rapidly. Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Health, has said this rise in transmission was a “warning to us all that even after such a difficult year, we must stay vigilant”.

Enjoy your Christmas but please stay safe and follow the Government guidelines for Tier 3.

Merry Christmas to all and we look forward to meeting up again in 2021.

The Directors


In order to control Covid-19, the Government has re-introduced a 3-Tier system from Wednesday, 2nd December. Along with many areas of England, West Berkshire has been placed in Tier 2.
We understand that for clubs in Tier 2 organised indoor bowls will only be permitted if it is possible for people to avoid mixing with people they do not live with (or share a support bubble with). We await clarification from our governing body, the EIBA, on what this will allow Indoor Bowls Clubs to provide. Pending this clarificationthe Directors have taken the decision that WBIBC will NOT re-open on Thursday, 3rd December as planned. If this changes, we will notify you immediately.
The Government will be reviewing the areas within each Tier on 16th December 2020 (or before), which could see areas move up or down a level. It is hoped that West Berkshire will move back to Tier 1 and the club will be able to re-open at this time.
Please rest assured that as soon as we have any further information/clarification, we will let members know.
Stay well, stay safe
The Directors


The Club is pleased to be able to support this very worthwhile local charity by selling the NCC 2021 Calendar with views of the Newbury area supplied by the Newbury Photography Club. Prior to lockdown, the calendars were selling like hot cakes from the office for just £7 payable on your club card. They make an ideal Christmas gift/stocking filler so don’t forget to buy yours when  we return.


The Club was fortunate in being able to complete the 2019-20 internal Competitions before the second lockdown. To see the winners and runners-up, please go to the Games tab above and scroll down to Club Competition Winners.

Don’t forget to get your entry in to the Competitions Secretary by 27th November to play in this season’s competitions.


In line with new Government restrictions the club is closed from Thursday, 5th November until Wednesday 2nd December. The Government hope that by reducing day-to-day contact with other people this will reduce the spread of the Covid-19 infection.

It is hoped the club will open again under Tier 1 restrictions from Thursday, 3rd December.

All League games not played under Covid restrictions will be deemed a ‘draw’ and both teams awarded 1 point. The Bowlr League programme will then continue from Thursday, 3rd December.

Having completed the 2019/20 Club Competitions before this lockdown, the 2020/21 Club Competition entry forms have now been sent out to all current playing members. Please return your form to the Competitions Secretary before 27th November  so that names can be entered and drawn on the Bowlr system ready to start competing in December.

The management of this club will comply with all Government guidelines. The club will be cleaned and sanitised prior to your return and will remain Covid secure.

Remember – ‘Hands, Face, Space’

Stay well and we will see you again in December.


Not looking forward to the long winter months, then why not give indoor bowls a try?

Maybe you are looking for exercise and a bit of social contact? Or maybe you are competitive but can’t play your usual sport any more?

Whatever your reason, you can play safely all year round at West Berks Indoor Bowls Club in a Covid secure environment at a level and time that suits you.

A new 10 week coaching course for beginners started on Saturday, 2nd October from 9.00 am – 11.00 am.

It’s not too late to join! Your first taster session is free, but places are limited, so please email email hidden; JavaScript is required for more details.