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Barlaston Plume of Feathers Bowling Club



    This is an age where on the one hand we are urged to take up more outdoor activities and on the other  

hand Authority cutbacks in Parks, for example, reduce sports facilities. Barlaston is indeed fortunate to have

its Bowling greens and its traditions and local folk should take advantage. Most knew about bowling but not

quite how much of a village tradition it really was until in this Church magazine Geoff Emery’s research into

Parish records first revealed there had been a Bowling green in Barlaston in 1737.

           The oldest is the Barlaston Plume of Feathers which began in 1926 when villagers constructed

the green on the village Butchers field where it has remained ever since. Decades, of course before the

present Plume which was then a coaching inn nearer the canal.

           The Club survived the war where Club minutes show bowls prizes were often items such as clothing

 coupons or ladies silk stockings. Our longest serving President was Rev Albert Freeman – the only President

to receive a new cassock from the Club so far.

           This year sees our President Paul Philpott continue in his second year in office. This itself creates another

tradition for this family sport as whilst past Presidents have included a Vicar, Professor, England Centre

Half, Post master, Butcher etc never before has a father and son both served – Paul and the late Stan.

            In later years Bowling greens were constructed at Wedgwoods and Meaford Power Station and

hosted thriving clubs. Sadly the demise of the power station meant closure of the excellent Social Club and

Bowling green. The Meaford men had to move to the Plume and to this day maintain its name, friendship

 and traditions, still bowling as Meaford Bowling Club in the Industries League.

           This loss of facility was remedied a few years later when a group of bowlers left the Plume to form a

new club by resurrecting the green at Meaford Power Station, first named Barlaston Private Bowling Club

and now for some years as Barlaston Bowling and Tennis. They continue to enjoy this restored village

bowling facility.

             The Barlaston Plume Club continues to thrive with three of their league teams again promoted and a

couple of County juniors. Experienced bowlers or those wishing to have a go at league bowling are welcome

 and the Club also wishes to extend its social bowling this year. New members are warmly welcomed

regardless of whether, casual or beginners of any age and will be offered a substantial discount on the

already reasonable fees. Whilst the green is always open, some periods will be reserved for casual bowling

and coaching. Events such as friendly meetings with other clubs, Charity games and open days are planned.

The club is qualified as a Community Amateur Sports Club.

            Past President the late Ernest Hawkins wrote in his Barlaston books that when he was a lad the only

 sport allowed in Barlaston on a Sunday was bowling at the Plume. So perhaps we are reviving a tradition by

inviting everyone to come to our next Open Day.


                                                                                                                      Peter J Nichols