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There is always much going on at the Club to keep things running and planning for longer term development of our facilities. 

As you will be aware our focus recently has been " Ditch and Green Edges" as these have deteriorated quite a lot in the last couple of years.  As you would expect this will not be an easy or cheap fix, particularly as only a few related activities can be undertaken by club volunteers.  We have revisited a number of costings for the work which range from some £15000 to £45000, the current working assumption is that a project cost of circa £30000/£35000 is the most likely solution providing a balance of effectiveness and longevity.  As many of the existing concrete ditch units have failed, causing green edge collapse, there is little latitude for temporary/interim solutions.

The biggest challenge to progressing this project will be to put in place a full "Finance Package" that will allow contractors to be engaged.  Good progress has been made in this regard with commitments from Ashford Borough Council and our Parish Council to each provide £5000, £2000 from Kent Community Fund and £1000 from the VHSC restricted reserve. This £13000 along with committing £10000 of the Clubs Project reserve means we have available £23000; in the circumstances the committee have submitted an application to Bowls England for a Loan facility of £12000, to be repaid over 8 years so that we have a full funding package available.  Discussions and planning with contractors are ongoing whilst a decision is awaited from Bowls England.

The current plan is to engage a single contractor to install new ditches, banks and level the outside 1 metre of the green.  Adjustments to the irrigation outlets and new rink numbers/markers etc. will be needed.  This is very specialist work and cannot be done by our volunteers the likely cost will approach £35000. However, the current planning assumption is that removal and disposal of the existing ditch profiles, Banks etc. can be undertaken by volunteers ...  Expect to see a plea for help sometime soon!!

I hope to be able to provide a more detailed update at our AGM in November

Any fundraising ideas etc.  will be very welcome, just let me know

Paul Buggins 3 October 2022

The damaged Club House Roof and repairs November 2020

Working on the green - Autumn and Winter 2018/2019