Leatherhead Bowls Achieves Clubmark Accreditation

My role in the club is
Club President. I’ve been Match Secretary
and I’m just relinquishing the role now, but I’m still the Ladies’ Match Secretary and
the External Competition Secretary. We started in 1908.
We have 120 members. We needed to increase
our numbers. the numbers had been falling
for a number of years. We were down to about 90. And Clubmark provided us with a methodology
for addressing how we do recruitment. Our lease was about to expire and we needed
to convince the local council that we really knew how to look after this place
and persuade them to give us a long lease. That actually proved to be very successful
and we have achieved that. And the last reason was the funding.
This building is in a fairly poor shape structurally, and we need to do something about it
and that needs money. And I’ve got to persuade, or the club has got
to persuade, funders to come along and help us, and they need to know that you are
a well-organised and well-managed club. We actually first were accredited four years ago,
and at that time, it was a paper-based system and this time around it was all online
and that actually was an easier process because I could work with our Assessor,
send him something electronically, he could comment on it, come back to us and
tell us whether it was right or wrong and give us some advice. So, the whole process
became much more dynamic. Leatherhead Bowling Club were actually
the first club we supported through the online process, so it was a learning experience
on both of our behalves. It was great to work with such
an enthusiastic club. Clubmark’s a really important part of our work
here in Surrey as we like to support clubs to improve in a systematic way and also to
help clubs ensure they’re meeting the minimum operating standards and providing
a safe and enjoyable experience. So, one of the benefits is to make sure that
we have got everything documented, it’s written down and we can demonstrate
that we know what we’re doing, and we can also demonstrate that we have
aligned with government and Bowls England Best Practice,
that we know about safeguarding and we know about First Aid and
all these many other things. So, when it actually comes to doing the Clubmark
process the one piece of advice I would give is to make sure that you take other members
in the club with you. You can’t do this on your own; you need to make
sure that everybody is with you and doing it.

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