The Highs And Lows Of Lemington Spa For Cumbria’s Bowlers

By Robert Haile

The winter season is coming to an end and bowlers up and down the country are turning their attention towards the outdoor leagues and competitions.

Here we look back on 2022 showpiece event in October with Cumbrian bowlers heading down to Leamington Spa for the Bowls England National Championships.

For those that new to the sport, watched it at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games and want to know a bit more.

There are several formats that are all fairly similar, it can be played as a single, pair, triple or four person team with men’s, women’s or mixed teams depending on the competition.

The only real difference is the number of bowls which range from two to four per player, again depending on the competition.

Up first at the Bowls England National competition was the Men’s and Women’s Triples with Aspatria and Wigton representing Cumbria at the end of August.

Sadly for Wigton’s female trio of Dorothy Westwood, Karen Westwood and Pauline Hodgson went out in the preliminaries losing 9-25 to Essex A.

Cumbria male trio of Kevin Harrison, Mark Irwin, Stuart Irwin from Aspatria went all the way to the final and brought home the Men’s Triples title with a 10-14 victory over Derbyshire.

Kevin Harrison, Mark Irwin, Stuart Irwin from Aspatria Bowling Club

Next up the Pairs competitions with Aspatria and Wigton providing the Cumbrian teams.

Sadly both went out in the first round with Aspatria’s Stuart Bowman and Richard Gibson losing 23-11 to Bedfordshire and Wigton’s Chelsie Browbank and Molly Haney 24-8 to Suffolk.

In the Junior Pairs Ryan Brannan and Callum Hodgson lost a close second round game 16-18 to Devon.

Mark Irwin was back on the green in the Singles but there was no repeat of the triples joy as he went out 21-4 in the preliminaries to Hertfordshire’s Glen Williams.

Workington’s Vicky Forster went the same way going out to 16-21 Hampshire A’s Margaret Holden.

Wigton’s Molly Haney returned for the Junior Women’s Singles going out in the First Round 21-7 to Leah Bamford of Kent A.

The Junior Men’s Singles had Keswick’s Ryan Brannan as Cumbria’s entry he made it to the First Round losing 16-21 to Lloyd Milligan of Lancashire.

Then were the Men’s And Women’s Fours with Workington having lifted the Men’s title in 2021 could Silloth repeat the achievement?

Sadly Silloth’s Ryan Orchard, Lewis Parker, Adam Hocking and Paul Wallace fell at the first hurdle losing 20-12 to Nottinghamshire.

Wigton’s Triple of Dorothy Westwood, Pauline Hodgson and Karen Westwood added Angela Hayton and almost did it going out in the Semifinals 26-12 to Oxfordshire’s quartet.

Angela Hayton was back in action in the Two Bowl Singles where she went out in the first round losing by a shot 17-18 to Kent B’s Erika White.

Silloth’s Adam Hocking returned for the Men’s Two Bowl Singles and went out 12-17 to Nottinghamshire’s Jack Emmerson in the first round.

It was a quarterfinal finish for Subscription’s Senior Four of Tom Prescott, Lawrence Kelly, David Balfour and Rick Gallagher going out 11-16 to Hertfordshire.

While Workington provided the Women’s Senior Four with Linda Abram, Tina Smitham, Carole Bannister and Noreen Fleet losing in the first round 11-21 to Essex.

Linda Abram and Tina Smitham were joined by Alan Green and Malcolm Smitham for the Mixed Fours and missed out on a spot in the final losing 4-19 to Surrey.

To bring the National Finals to a close Wigton’s Women and Aspatria’s Men competed in the Top Club, which the range of disciplines on display throughout the finals.

Aspatria went out in the quarterfinal losing 2-3 to Hampshire and Wigton fell 0-4 to Warwickshire at the same stage.


Josh Grant, Dan Thornhill, Phil Broughton
(Stute, Derbyshire)
10 – 14
Kevin Harrison, Mark Irwin, Stuart Irwin
(Aspatria, Cumbria) Final

Dorothy Westwood, Karen Westwood, Pauline Hodgson
(Wigton, Cumbria)
9 – 25

Hayley Kenny, Michelle Carlin, Rebecca Smith
(Clockhouse (Upminster), Essex A) Preliminary


Glenn Williams
(Garston, Hertfordshire)
21 – 4
Mark Irwin
(Aspatria, Cumbria)
(Challenger) Preliminary

Vicky Forster
(Workington, Cumbria)

16 – 21
Margaret Holden
(Alton Social, Hampshire A)
(Challenger) Preliminary

Junior Singles

Ryan Brannan
(Keswick, Cumbria)

16 – 21
Lloyd Milligan
(Heaton Hall, Lancashire) First Round

Leah Bamford
(Canterbury, Kent A)
21 – 7
Molly Haney
(Wigton, Cumbria) First Round

Two Bowl Singles

Adam Hocking
(Silloth, Cumbria)

12 – 17
Jack Emmerson
(Newark Northern, Nottinghamshire) First Round

Angela Hayton
(Wigton, Cumbria)

17 – 18
Erika White
(Lenham Kent B)


Christopher Beard & Andrew Manning
(Sharnbrook, Bedfordshire)
23 – 11
Stuart Bowman & Richard Gibson
(Aspatria, Cumbria)
(Challenger) First Round

Tracey Johnson, Joanne Rowe
(Borough of Eye, Suffolk)
24 – 8
Chelsie Browbank & Molly Haney
(Wigton, Cumbria) First Round

Junior Pairs

Ryan Brannan, Callum Hodgson

16 – 18
Scott Eveleigh, Kieran Kniveton
(Devon) Second Round


Russell Chamberlain, Alistair Hansen, Russell Pearce & Michael Owen
(Cavaliers, Nottinghamshire)
20 – 12
Ryan Orchard, Lewis Parker, Adam Hocking & Paul Wallace
(Silloth, Cumbria) Preliminary

Donna Knight, Carol Gaskins, Katherine Hawes, Lorraine Kuhler
(Oxford City and County, Oxfordshire)
26 – 12
Dorothy Westwood, Angela Hayton, Pauline Hodgson, Karen Westwood
(Wigton, Cumbria) Semifinal

Senior Fours

Tom Prescott, Lawrence Kelly, David Balfour, Rick Gallagher
(Subscription, Cumbria)
11 – 16
Paul Mackness, Brian Ralphs, Kevin Clarke, Chris Gray
(Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire) Quarterfinal

Linda Abram, Tina Smitham, Carole Bannister, Noreen Fleet
(Workington, Cumbria)

11 – 21
Cheryl Rayner, Jackie Barham-Holt, Janice Fortune, Maureen Norgate
(Wanstead Central, Essex) First Round

Mixed Four

Linda Abram, Tina Smitham, Alan Green, Malcolm Smitham

4 – 19
Faye Ludlow, Hayley Halford, Paul Jenkins, Dennis Hennessy
(Surrey) Semifinal

Top Club

Men Quarterfinal


2 – 3
Boscombe Cliff
(Hampshire (Mid/West)

Women Quarterfinal


0 – 4
Royal Leamington Spa