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Public urged to get behind Ryedale Indoor Bowls Club
A RALLYING call has been made to bowls players across Ryedale to ‘sign up and play’ at the newly reopened bowls club in Norton.
Ryedale District Council has granted a licence to bowl to the Ryedale Community and Leisure Centre who are opening the doors this week and holding open sessions to encourage players back.
The future of Norton Bowls Centre has been in doubt since its owner, Ryedale District Council, said it was putting the facility up for sale.
Members of the district council voted to sell the site last year after a report said that the club’s survival had only been secured by the council halving the annual rent to £10,000.
The club, based off Scarborough Road in Norton, was formally registered as an Asset of Community Value by the district council in July and an expressions of interest in bidding to buy the building was made by Ryedale Community and Leisure Centre last month meaning any sale of the building cannot take place until December 26.
John Harrison, Ryedale Community and Leisure Centre chairman, said: “We are appealing to all bowls players in Ryedale and further afield who have played at Norton in the past to come back and support us.
“The open days will give everyone a chance to come along and pay their membership, sign up for leagues going forward and enjoy some social bowling.
“We hope to start competitive bowling the following week when leagues have been established – it will be great to get back into the building and see it used again.”
The Ryedale Community and Leisure Centre will be running bowls from September to December while developing its plans for the long-term future of the building as a community facility.
Committee member Barrie Elener said it was now down to all bowlers and others who wish to see the centre saved for the community to help support it.
“This is only the start of trying to get the centre open again and we need people to come forward and support it,” he said.
“We know that some of our regular bowlers will have gone elsewhere and already signed up at other clubs, which is understandable, but we do hope that once the centre is up and running many of them will come back and help support the club, once again.
“This is just the start – we are all working together now and let’s give it our full support.”
Coun Di Keal, deputy mayor of Norton, said: “We are delighted that Ryedale District Council officers have turned the lease around for us so quickly meaning that the bowls players can get back in the building and start playing again.
The bowls sessions will run tomorrow (Thursday), 10.30am-12.30pm, 2pm-4pm and 7pm-9pm and on Sunday, 10am-noon.
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