Francis Drake Bowls Club

Have a go, coached, on one of our Open Days

Have a go, coached, on one of our Open Days

Our ladies about to take on the best of the rest

Our ladies about to take on the best of the rest

Latest News & Upcoming Events


Francis Drake at Danson Park Open


Colin, Rob, Mick and Jeanette represented Francis Drake at the Danson Park ‘Open’ on the second May Bank Holiday.

The team won 3 and lost 3 of their 6 short games which were interspersed with rest periods. The organisation and food were first class and it was a great opportunity to catch up with old friends and meet new people in a very relaxed environment.


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A BUSY START TO THE NEW SEASON - sessions for new bowlers continue and casual sessions are available

This season has already seen a lot of action on the green.


For the first time in the club's history eight men entered the National Men's Double Rink Competition, the first round was on May 3rd. The opposition - Bellingham - were mostly both experienced and strong making the final result of a loss by only six shots overall for Francis Drake very respectable. Well done guys! (Photos here)


 Both the weather and the turn-out for the Open day were brilliant with over 50 local people 'having a go' at bowls. Three have already joined as new members and several others are attending the follow-up Introductory sessions (spaces still available so contact us if you are interested). Casual sessions are back on most Wednesday evenings and Sunday mornings we look forward to seeing some previous friends back again. (Photos here)


Many club members helped Sylvia celebrate her 80th Birthday in style at a brilliant surprise party organised by her children for family and friends. Sylvia still participates in all club events and bowls competitively in the Ladies North-West Kent league and County Competitions. Bowling really does keep you young! Congratulations Sylvia. (Photos here)


 Despite the inclement weather on Saturday 12th May club members were out in force to compete for the Will Smith Trophy and plate. Tim Deacon knocked out last year's holder - David Singer but was then in turn knocked out by Rob Warnes (left) who took the trophy, which was presented by Captain Ron Phillips. The final for the plate was a close all ladies match with Jeanette Singer beating President Jill Bonner to take the Plate. Well done to all competitors. (Photos here)



Club members celebrate - Christmas and another successful season


Members and friends enjoy a Christmas get together at the Clarendon Hotel Blackheath. More photos here

The season is over and the green closed but members come together for social events and a few indoor matches, with many also bowling as members of Lewisham Indoor Bowls Club through the winter.

The club also celebrates another very positive season. Notable events included winning the following

  •  Francis Chappell Trophy
  • 'Hospitals' Trophies - Men's Singles, Men's pairs and Ladies Triples
  • Beckenham, Bromley and District Bowling Association Trophies - Men's Singles and Triples League
  • Lewisham and District League Shield (3rd consecutive year)
  • 2nd member qualifying for Kent Badge


Ted the Glendale green keeper will keep working on the green through the winter and is pleased to report that the new patch of turf where the subsidence was repaired has taken well and the whole green will be in use next season.

The club welcomes new members and casual bowlers. If you would like further information about bowling outdoors from next April or indoors before then please contact us - it doesn't matter if you have never bowled before and all equipment and coaching is available if required.


BB&DBA 70th Finals brings more success for Francis Drake

The Beckenham, Bromley and District Bowling Association is now 70 years old! It provides opportunities for all members of 23 affiliated clubs to bowl together in matches against other clubs and Associations.

Affiliated clubs compete in singles, pairs, triples and fours formats against one another through the season.

This year the seven finals were again played simultaneously at HSBC.

As last year's club championship winner, David Singer represented FDBC in the Men's Singles - Champion of Champions - and in the final beat his opponent Les Walker from South Hill Wood.

The club's other finalists played in the Triples League Competition. They are: (l to r) Jeanette Singer, Michael Singer, Rob Warne, Stan Auger, Dave Fricker and Ron Phillips, In front is David Singer who won the singles trophy.

Francis Drake Bowls played two triples in the final against Ladywell Bowls Club.  

The scores from the two triples were added together. While one triple had a tough battle but managed to hang on to lose by only one shot, the other had a slow start but then pulled away and led convincingly. 

The result was a win for Francis Drake by six shots over the two teams.

After the games, 98 players and spectators enjoyed a roast dinner and presentation ceremony.

Well done everyone who competed in all the rounds and a special thank you again to members who came to support.


Success x 3 for Francis Drake B.C. at the 'Hospital' Finals

This season the club had more entries to the 'Hospitals' than ever before. The 'Hospitals' are a complete collection of Bowls Competitions across both sexes, and mixed, and also across singles, pairs triples and fours between bowlers from the local area. All proceeds go to the Bromley Hospital Amenities Fund used to support small local health related concerns.

Francis Drake reached the Finals in:-

Men's Singles - Rob Warnes

Men's Pairs - Rob Warnes and David Singer

Ladies Triples - Sylvia Lacey, Sue Hastings and Jill Bonner (Jeanette Singer substituted for Jill in the Final as she was unable to play).

Francis Drake won all three!

Rob played a completely focused and excellent game to dominate and win by a comfortable margin.

Rob and David continued this in the afternoon and, not at all phased by the rain bowled on until their opponents conceded after 16 of the 21 ends available.

The Ladies Triples game was a close run thing throughout and after the required 18 ends the score was 15-15. The coin was tossed, Francis Drake won the toss and took the mat (to the surprise of some!), with two bowls left it was a measure for shot. Jeanette drew the shot and her opposing skip was unable to beat it. A third win for Francis Drake. The tremendous support from 9 other members of the club on what ended up a very wet day undoubtedly played it's part.


Club Finals 2017

Finals weekend was officially opened by the Mayor of Lewisham Sir Steve Bullock. To start the event all present participated in a 'Spider' raising over £70 for the Mayor's charity - The Lavender Trust which supports younger women affected by breast cancer.

11 members played in the various competitions over the 2 days with other members acting as markers, umpires and laying on refreshments which were enjoyed by players and spectators.

David Singer continued his successful season by once again winning the men's Championship. There were some hard fought battles on the green and some very close calls including one end in the 100-Up competition (also known as the 4-3-2-1)where the two closest shots could not be split even by the umpire!

Full details of all winners and runners-up with some great shots of the day appear in the gallery - grateful thanks to our 'in-house photographer' Keith Ward. 




David Singer has become the second player in 2 years to earn his Kent Badge. Despite working full time David went all out to get his badge this year after coming so close last season. He reached the Divisional Semi-Finals of the County Competitions in the pairs (with Ken Shooter), triples (with Ken and Rob Warnes) and the unbadged Singles. However it was in the main Singles Competition open to both badged and unbadged players that he won the Divisional Final to qualify for his Kent badge.





 3rd Francis Chappell Bowls Tournament won by the home team!


Players, organisers, dignatories and guests before the start

Thanks to the generous sponsorship of Francis Chappell and Sons, this event has now become firmly established in the club's calendar. Eight  clubs took part, some previous competitors and some new faces. The Francis Drake Team of Rob Warnes, David Singer and Ken Shooter took the Trophy, with neighbouring club Forest Hill coming second, despite previously winning clubs Orpington Excelsior and Gonville, again taking part. After presenting the trophy, Emma Sparre-Slater, Regional Training Officer for Dignity Funerals, accompanied by four of her colleagues, joined some club members on the green for an enjoyable roll-up to end a superb day.



Two teams compete at Canterbury

Eight men formed two teams and joined 24 other teams from around Kent to compete in the annual Kent Patron's Charity Day at Canterbury. After 4 games played throughout the day in a 'Round Robin' format Team A finished a respectable 7th. Team B finished in 20th place. All concerned agreed it was an enjoyable day and are keen to return again next year.

NB Forthcoming events

  • Club open for casual bowling and coaching 10.30am Bank Holiday Sunday 28th August
  • Club Finals 3rd and 4th September


Success Story

Ladies Captain Jeanette Singer has become the first member of the club, in its 110 year history, to play at the National Championships.

Jeanette (left) achieved this prestigious honour by winning Division One and the semi-finals of the Kent County ladies singles. At the same time she also became the first member to win her County badge.

Jeanette will play at the famous Leamington Spa greens on Friday August 12th.

We wish her all the very best as she continues to raise the profile of the club at the highest level.


Club charity day supports Young Dementia UK

The club's annual charity day raised £147 for Young Dementia UK (with more promised).

Dementia tends to be associated with the older person but it has been estimated that 42,325 of the 850,000 people in the UK with dementia are between 30 and 65 years of age.  

All participants had to wear something orange, the charity's brand colour,or pay a fine!

The afternoon kicked off with the traditional 'Spider' contest won by Dave H. (see gallery video for explanation of this).

After four ends it was a case of rain stopped play!' but an early tea break accompanied by home made cakes (thank you to the ladies who supplied these) saved the day.

By the time the table-load of raffle prizes donated by participants had been claimed the sun came out and the competition resumed.

The day was saved again by 'senior' player Rex (far left in the picture above) who kept bowling all afternoon to cover for young David S who was held up at work. Well done Rex! The runners up were the 'glamorous girls' team of Sylvie and Jill but the winning pair on the day were...

...Arty (left) and Captain Ron seen here with president Jill.




Four  members of the Kent County Coaching Team and the two  club coaches, Jeanette and Ron, led by Rob Hope ran an excellent Skills Day at the Club. Francis Drake members were joined by bowlers from Ladywell and Southwark Park bowls clubs for an informative and enjoyable day. All participants had a session on each of the 5 Rinks which covered video analysis, a delivery clinic, exercises to improve consistency, 'head reading' and measuring. Once again Francis Drake members attending brought a plate of food with them  and everyone enjoyed the wonderful buffet lunch provided.

No-one was deterred by the few spots of rain and the day finished in warm sunshine with everyone going away with their individual ideas about what they can do to improve their game and full of praise for the Coaching Team.

 Please go to the gallery for more photographs from the 'Skills day'


Charity pairs competition in aid of The Lewisham Foodbank.

On Sunday members and friends of Francis Drake Bowls Club raised £180 and donated a good collection of food and toiletries for the Lewisham Foodbank. Thank you to all who donated.

 The afternoon started with the Spider Competition (see gallery) won by Carol. This was followed by the Pairs Competition - for which everyone had to wear something green (thus the Crocodile head!) This saw a few surprise outcomes during individual games, and a few needle matches as well. The overall winners were Bryn McNeill and Rob Warnes. Congratulations to them!

Others came to watch and/or assist with the organisation and the food. The pairs competition was followed by the raffle and then during the barbecue, expertly cooked by Sylvia Lacey and granddaughter Rebecca, everyone had a chance to catch up with all the news.

Well Done Everyone!


Francis Drake Bowls Club

Francis Drake Bowls Club is situated in the beautiful setting of Hilly Fields in Brockley, South London.

We are a friendly, successful club and we always welcome new members and guests.

On Tuesday and Thursday from 2pm until about 5.30pm we have a roll up session where members play casual games with teams selected on the day and practice their skills.

On Wednesday evenings (from 6pm) and Sunday mornings (from 10.30am) we have more casual sessions which non-members are welcome to join in. Fee is £3 per session which includes loan of shoes and bowls if required.

Please note under fives are not allowed  on the green and under 16s must be supervised by a responsible adult at all times

If you are a visiting bowls player or just fancy trying the game please come and visit us. Coaching and purposeful practice sessions can be pre-arranged with the club coaches at no additional charge..

All of the above are dependent on club matches/events and the English weather!

Contact details can be found here.

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The latest Newsletter (No.10 Jly '18) is HERE


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