Moonta Memorial Park Bowling Club celebrates centenary

by Marketing on November 23, 2021

On Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 November, Moonta Memorial Park Bowling Club members celebrated their club’s Centenary.

The Centenary Dinner was held on the Saturday night, with 115 members and guests in attendance.

Guest speaker was former Adelaide Crow, Wayne Weideman, who kept the crowd entertained with his interesting life and football history.

Other guests included Copper Coast Mayor, Ros Talbot, Chair of the Northern Yorke Peninsula Bowling Association Brian Smith, Member for Narrunga, Fraser Ellis, and State Women’s coach Tony Lucas representing Bowls SA.

MC for the evening Terry Logan and Life Member Howard Andrew gave an interesting history of the Bowling Club with 100 year highlights including:

  • 17 November 1921:  A meeting was held at the residence of Dr. A.R. Clayton to consider the idea of forming a bowling club. Dr Clayton was elected President and Mr. A.D. Moffat was elected Secretary.
  • 1 December 1921: The Moonta Memorial Park Bowling Club was formed with 43 members who paid 1 guinea (Today equivalent $86) entrance and 2 guineas subscription ($172)
  • 24 February 1923: Bowls was first played and the club had 43 members. A club house, measuring 24ft x 16ft (7.2m x 4.8m) was built. The club took out a 300 pound ($25,462) overdraft. Croquet Club was formed for the wives and relatives of bowlers, as long as they were financial at the time.
  • 1926: 68 members at the AGM. New green keeper employed for 4 pounds ($328)
  • 1928: 78 members and the club was affiliated with SABA. Members decided to enter the Country Carnival over Easter. One team was selected to represent the Club, but other teams could enter. 
  • 1933: The first Christmas Carnival saw bowlers playing singles, pairs and fours. Entry was 2/6d ($13) and prizes were 2 guineas ($218) for winner of singles and 1 guinea for runner-up. Four guineas and one guinea for the pairs, and eight guineas and three guineas for the fours. Profit was eight pounds twelve shillings and sixpence ($887).
  • 17 November 1950: Interested women met in the Unity Hall and the Moonta Women’s Bowling Club was formed with 20 members. It was not an easy time, as women would join as Associate Members and be subject to the rules set down by the Men’s Committee.  
  • 1952: A third green of 5 rinks was added to the club.
  • 1961: A.R. Clayton granted Life Membership.
  • 1968: Decision was made to demolish existing club rooms and build a new complex. The new building cost $12,000      
  • 1987: In July, the two Clubs amalgamated under one Administrative Committee, with separate committees to function for the working of both the Men’s and Women’s Clubs. In the winter of 1987, further renovations were carried out. The toilet block was demolished and the croquet room became the kitchen. Doors were made in what was the end wall and a storeroom, new croquet room, toilet for disabled persons, a cleaning room, a new men’s toilet and a spacious women’s toilet with three toilets, three hand basins and a rest area. Cost was $51,000 and the Club took out a bank loan of $22,000.
  • 2010: Significant renovations again carried out 
  • August 2011: Club hosted International Test Series between Australia & South Africa with world wide audience.
  • 2015 and 2016: Club hosted 2 Australian over 60s championships.

The Club currently has 145 members, with 11 sides playing pennants each week.

Three club members have represented South Australia over the years, Martin Beaglehole, Ian Hatcher OAM and Jay Phillips.

On the Sunday, 100 members and visitors from seven NYPBA clubs again enjoyed the history presentation from Terry and Howard. Social bowls was then played with the winners being a Moonta 4 skippered by Kevin Coates.

Inaugural Lady Member, and now life member Mary Roach unveiled a Centenary plaque. 

A fantastic effort put in by the Centenary Committee under the guidance of Bob Cavanagh as President to make the weekend a success.

A centenary book is to be published in the near future.