Bowl along to Langney’s answer to Narnia – and find there’s more sport than football at Priory Lane

Priory Lane, home of Eastbourne Borough, has always enjoyed its reputation as a place for all – from the little people in Owlets nursery to the older generations enjoying social and recreational pursuits.
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And one facility is enjoying a burst of fresh life. It is huge, white and windowless – and visiting supporters at Priory Lane often assume it’s a warehouse. But the indoor bowls hall at Langney Sports Club is rather a best-kept secret, and the club is throwing the doors open.

Unremarkable from the outside, perhaps – but when you step through the connecting door from the football clubhouse, it’s like the wardrobe to Narnia. A cavernous domed space, which feels almost the size of a cathedral, opens out to players and visitors – and there is room for new converts to the sport.

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Louise Kenward, one of the club’s officers, explains: “We are actually doing rather well – we’ve always had over 200 members, but there is room for more! And we think some people, who would really enjoy indoor bowls, may be missing out simply because they don’t know about us!

The indoor bowls centre at Priory Lane | Contributed pictureThe indoor bowls centre at Priory Lane | Contributed picture
The indoor bowls centre at Priory Lane | Contributed picture

“So we are inviting everyone and anyone to come and give indoor bowls a try! Contrary to the popular image, bowls – indoor or outdoor – isn’t restricted to the older generation! It is a sport for all ages and all abilities. At a recreational level, it is wonderful healthy exercise, taken at whatever level you choose, whether gentle or intense.

“And equally, we have members who play more competitively up to County level. Indoor bowls can be played as singles, pairs or fours.”

Louise is a former Sussex County President – and a super ambassador for the sport as well as for her own club.

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“There is a social dimension, of course, and many lasting friendships are made. Indoor bowls is great for well-being and mental health. We all get along famously, and with the bowls hall open from 11.00am every day, it becomes a regular date for many members!”

The club is on a mission – to turn that best kept secret into a new-found activity for new converts. “We are offering open sessions, starting this week, for anyone who’d like to give indoor bowls a try. No pressure or hard sell, of course – just turn up and see what we’re about!”

The doors are open tomorrow (Friday 26th) from 2pm to 6pm. Experienced and friendly members will be on hand, and no previous experience is needed, nor special equipment. “But we’d like you, please, to simply have a pair of flat-soled shoes!”

There will be further open taster sessions in future weeks, and four hours’ free coaching is also on offer for those wishing to develop their expertise. Langney’s own Narnia? Go on - just step through the doors….

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