Monday, 17 March 2014

Bowling buggies included at Regent Park

Paul James of EDF (front) presents the buggies to
Alan Tizard, Ian Thompson, Brian Cooke and Graham Buckley,
 representing Regent Park Crown Greeen Bowling Tuition Centre.

Wheelchair bowlers at Regent Park crown green bowls club have been given some new buggies which will help them practice and play. The group approached EDF Energy, which runs Heysham power stations, for a grant from its Sporting Legacy fund – set up post London Olympics to help local groups.

EDF have bought the two specially-designed ‘buggies’ which will help the bowlers get on to the greens. They are not self propelling so if you are using one and cannot walk safely on grass you will need to be pushed by somebody able-bodied. They are cushioned and light but balanced with rollbars to allow users to rock back and forth safely with freedom of upper body movement to facilitate the bowling action.

Brian Cooke, secretary at the centre, said: “The company has kindly given us £5000 which has allowed us to buy the new buggies specially designed to allow bowlers with disabilities to learn the sport.

“There is no other provision for people with disabilities or special educational needs with other bowls clubs,
We have been looking at how we can make our club even more inclusive for players and now having these two buggies means that we can open our tuition activities to even more people.

 “The buggies will be is an invaluable way to allow some people to also regain a degree of independence and to allow them to continue to play sport. Both can be used by adults and children alike and allow them to bowl safely.”

Ian Stewart, station director at Heysham 1 power station, said: “I am delighted that we can support this group which offers people with disabilities a chance to enjoy sport.

“I have been very impressed with the commitment of all involved at the bowls club to ensure everyone can get involved and I am delighted that we can support their efforts to open the club to people with disabilities.”

Regent Park crown green bowling tuition centre was set up seven years ago and offers coaching for adults and children, inclusive of special needs. Members of the Regent Park Bowls club welcomed guests and VIPs to an open day at the park when the two buggies were displayed. In recognition of their unflagging commitment we refer you to their facebook page, and the picture series in which club Tuition Secretary and Coach Brian Cooke is unpacking and assembling the buggies for use. Respect.

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