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Praise for sports club which bowled up to help NHS

Lymington Bowling Club allowed its clubhouse to be used by the local NHS trust
Lymington Bowling Club allowed its clubhouse to be used by the local NHS trust

LYMINGTON bowlers have been applauded for their community spirit in helping out the NHS during the peak of the coronavirus pandemic.

The bowling club, off Avenue Road, provided its clubhouse free of charge for about six months for team meetings by Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the town’s hospital.

The premises was forced to shut during the lockdown but has now opened its doors again. During its closure it hosted NHS events, under social distancing guidelines, for essential training, personal development and emotional support.

Club secretary Tony Lank said: “The club’s committee are all so grateful for everything the NHS has been doing – the least we could offer was the use our clubhouse.

“We and our members are very proud that this has been useful in supporting NHS workers in their response to coronavirus.”

Bernie Tennant, club president
Bernie Tennant, club president

He added: “All bowling clubs, both indoor and outdoor, are run by their members as a community asset and they perform an invaluable role in helping people in their local community, of any age and ability, to find a new and fun way of staying physically active and mentally stimulated.”

Because of the speed that local NHS spaces had to be reconfigured to respond to the pandemic, without the club’s intervention the meetings would not have been

possible due to the lack of large enough venues, the trust said.

Stuart Harris, trust training business manager, explained: “It’s been crucial that NHS workers have had continued access to training and professional support so they can deliver the best possible care to their patients throughout the response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Having a safe space to come together as a team is immensely helpful for this.

“We wholeheartedly thank the committee of Lymington Bowling Club for their generous and sustained support over the past six months.”

Lymington Bowling Club, which has about 120 members, was founded in 1921 and is preparing to celebrate its 100th anniversary next year.

Mr Harris added: “They made all the necessary arrangements with other parties like the club’s insurance provider and landlord, the town council, to allow for this partnership arrangement to become operational very quickly.

“President Bernie Tennant and vice-president David Nutbeam also selflessly gave their time to open and close the clubhouse each day that we needed to use it.”

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