South Park Bowling Club Photos Available

by BowlsSA5

A piece of bowls history has been shared with Bowls SA, in a bid to find some club photos a new home.

The South Park Bowling Club was based on Greenhill Road, formed in 1907 and was a top grade bowling club best known for its City of Lights Tournament.  $3,000 in prize money attracted competitors to the singles competition that ran every night for 2 weeks.

The clubhouse was named after Don Sampson to honour the work put into the Club.

A number of factors saw a decline in the Club’s membership, including the end of the 6 o’clock swill at South Australian licensed premises where workers had grown up on the tradition of finishing work and binge drinking for the pub’s last hour before the call of ‘time gentlemen please’.  The introduction of 10pm closing in 1967 saw members look closer to home to drink.

The clubhouse was broken into and burnt down with the arsonist caught due to the burns inflicted during the attack.  This was inevitably the end of the South Park Bowling Club, although insurance rebuilt the club with the local tennis and hockey clubs moving into the building.

South Park Bowling Club then merged with Unley Park in 2001 with this club later folding when the member base no longer wanted to play competitive bowls.  A final migration of members was made to Clarence Gardens Bowling Club, taking with them the once prestigious City of Lights Cup.

The photos available to good homes include:

  • 4 x Winners of First Division Pennant 1944-45
  • 4 x First Division Winners of 1945-46
  • First Division Premiers 1948-49
  • First Division Winners of 1955-56 Pennant
  • First Division Premiers 1957-58
  • First Division Scored-A-Eight 1957-58
  • First Division Premiers 1958-59

Please contact Bowls SA if you are interested in any of the photos listed.

Many thanks to Graham Sampson, Leith Harvey and Alan Wright who shared their memories of South Park Bowling Club.