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USBC NEWS UPDATES

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12 March 2021

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Much has happened during the past few weeks here is an update.

Bowling.

We await guidance from Bowls England but it is expected that the Green will open on April 17th and be run for a few weeks in a similar way to last season. (Restricted access to the clubhouse and limited numbers on the Green).

In May we expect to open the Green for bowling proper and in June hopefully we use the clubhouse socially.

Membership fees have been reviewed but until we have confirmation from Bowls England nothing can be firmed up. We need income so we need to generate revenue in some way during the coming 12 months. Watch this space.

As most of you will know Jacqui Lawrence has taken over the treasurers role for the club for which we are all very grateful.

Jacqui has successfully obtained £8000 from the local council (funded by Central Government) to help us maintain the club during lockdown, which is brilliant news.

The New Extension.

As most of you know the extension now exists, We had a technical issue with the roof. The supplier nailed and glued the roof down; flat. Luke (the builder) has to fit a new sloping plywood skin to take the insulation and roof covering. The total extra cost is £1400 for ply and fittings and this will be paid for by the supplier. The "rework" has put us behind by 2 weeks. The roofing company will fit 120mm of insulation and the weather sealing layer within the next few days. The windows and doors will then be fitted and the floor screed laid on the 29th March. On the 5th April we can start the first fit. (plumbing for the heating and wiring for the lights etc). During the summer the external cladding will be fitted.

Funding

The funding of the extension is completely separate to the club funding and good news phase 1 is unlikely to overrun the original cost estimate.

Lew has been working on fund raising and has, brilliantly, raised a few hundred pounds from the Council and a massive £10000 from Clark's Shoes -community fund.

This will allow us to install the new disabled toilet and a lot of the plumbing, ventilation and water heating for the changing rooms.

The solar power and Tesla power wall battery storage should be installed during April.

The air source heating system is ordered and will be installed when it arrives from the supplier later in the year. This is 90% funded by Fullabrook Wind Farm (£25000).

Clubhouse serviceability.

We expect the main building to be cleared of the "debris" of the building work during early April. At that point we hope members will be available to help give the building a really thorough spring clean ready for the new season.

Centenary Celebrations

We were expecting Bowls England to provide a visiting team during May but this now looks impossible due to Covid-19 restrictions. This is under review but we will keep you posted.

The executive has discussed the possibility of celebrating the Centenary over 2021 and 2022 but no definite decision has been made.

George Hammet and Lew Baglow have designed a new shirt and centenary badge.

George has persuaded Brend Hotels to sponsor the shirt for each full member.

31 December 2020

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2021 Honours list

George Hammett has been awarded the MBE for his fundraising services, in particular for running quiz nights at venues throughout North Devon.

Since rejoining our club George has raised a lot of money for USBC. Congratulations from all the club members, well deserved award.

18 December 2020

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Foundations dug and concrete poured.

Click for more pictures (scroll down for latest)

04 December 2020

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Great news. The foundations for our new extension will start on Monday 14th December with the concrete being poured on the following Friday.

28 November 2020

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Asbestos removal.

The clubhouse men’s changing area has now been cleared of the asbestos that was in the ceiling.

 Click to picture of clubhouse progress (scroll down through pictures)

19 November 2020

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Lew has made it to the Gazette. Click to read Gazette Article

26 October 2020

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4 months late but we have made it.

As you are all aware we have been waiting for paperwork from North Devon Council, specifically the clubhouse lease. The original plan was to order in June and build in October.

The prefabricated building has a lead time in excess of 12 weeks. We will order it this week. The Lottery fund will pay the deposit of £6000 and the drawings will be sent off  later in the week giving dimensions and details of the site.

Mid November we will have the asbestos insulation removed from above the mens changing room. A tricky operation requiring the room to be sealed and pressurised before removing the asbestos.

LS building construction will come on board and take over the site. Demolish the mens changing room and the small shed at the rear of the clubhouse in preparation for digging the foundations and laying the drains.

In January we hope to have the building delivered. A crane will lift the sections from the public car park over the clubhouse and onto the new foundations.

Following this the roof will be laid over the plywood sheets with the necessary 120mm insulation.

Windows and doors will be fitted and the access to the old clubhouse cut through the walls where the current windows are fitted (avoiding the need for new lintels). The interior walls will be skimmed and plastered ready for decoration. Wiring and services will be dropped in the roof void.

The heating system (air source heat pump), solar panels and Tesla battery storage will be installed after the clubhouse is water tight. This is funded by Fullabrook Wind farm (£23,500). The sub-contractor for this work will be resdevon (based on Pottington)

Currently that is where we stop spending. We expect that the stud work will be undertaken by our maintenance team. Next season the kitchen, ladies changing room and bar in the present position and the second phase to start in the winter of 2021. If funds can be raised during the next 3 months we may be able to complete the move of the kitchen etc   before April.

01 September 2020

The confirmation vote for the loan, sent out last month was overwhelmingly in favour. 48 yes, 2 no.

What is happening to our new clubhouse extension?

We are waiting and waiting for the council to grant the final licence to commence the build and are now 1 month behind schedule.

Funding is in place and planning is processing the updated drawing with the new heating and solar installation.

The council has been promising us a new lease since 2011, yes 2011. We requested a new lease,to include the land on which the extension is to be built, 18 months ago. They released the land and we moved the fence but are insisting we have to have a new lease that is in the hands of the NDC legal department.

Unfortunately we cannot order the extension until we have the council goahead.

We will not be committing to the loan or grants until the council gives us the paperwork!

Watch this space.

Click to see story in pictures of clubhouse improvements

Click for Report on Clubhouse Extension 2020

Coronavirus and our Club (Updated Regularly)

Sunday 7th June

New guidance and booking form (see your email to link to the booking form)

Click for latest guidance on for bowling

Wednesday 27th May

Hello everyone

Although we thought the green may not open this year, it has, and in splendid condition.

A huge thank you to everyone who has been involved in getting us to this point.  There has been a mountain of work going on both on the green and on the Club house extension and we should all be grateful to the members involved.

Whilst we are unable to bowl in competition we are fortunate to be able to bowl within the Bowls England guidelines.  This has been achieved much quicker than first thought.

Lastly I am very grateful to everyone who has helped and only wish that my health issues have prevented me from taking an active roll.

Happy bowling and stay safe

David

President

Wednesday 20th May

The Council have just granted us a full licence to carry out work on the clubhouse and extension. We hope to get underway in the next few weeks by replacing the old asbestos roof of the clubhouse and moving the fence. We have an Exec meeting tomorrow which we hope will rubber stamp the go-ahead.

The team

Wendy, Lew, David A and Chris

Friday 15th May

Ready to start bowling? Bowls England have spelt out how we can start bowling again.

Summerising; games must be played on alternate rinks. Each game can be solo or with a family member or one other person, a maximum of 2 players per ring, 2 jacks per rink and only one person touching the jack. There are more formalities including sterilisation of equipment, the use of toilets and printing notices that have to be completed before the executive can permit anyone to bowl on the green.

We also have to work out a booking system etc.

During the coming week we hope to sort out much of the red tape.

The executive is  planning  a “tele-conference” next Thursday to ensure that we comply with the requirements of Bowls England and commonsense.

We will update you as soon as this has been done. The Green awaits!

Chris

Wednesday 29th April

Clubhouse update. In order to keep our planning permission we need to “do something” before 20th June therefore we are proposing to replace the roof of the existing building while coronavirus keeps us out of the clubhouse.

We are just waiting for formal documentation from the council (revised lease). When the asbestos roof is removed, the back of the gents changing room will have a temporary sheeted roof, to allow gents the use the WC.

As soon as we get the paperwork we will be holding an executive meeting to cross the “t's and dot the “i”s and let you all know what is happening.

Wednesday 22nd April

More good news!

We received this email from the council this morning.

“We are happy for you to move the fence line now. I will instruct our Estates Team to give you the required document to permit this and we will need to contact Boca Seniors to tell them we are now exercising this option that was documented in their lease.”

Finally we have the go-ahead for the clubhouse extension. We have modified the plans a little. Our current cellar will remain for the time being and what was going to be a storage room will be put on hold. The building will be 3.5 metre shorter but the changing rooms and lounge remain unaltered (the possibility of extending still remains). The reduction in cost means that we can avoid taking a loan from Bowls England.

The Lottery is on board with the changes and all that is needed is formally revised quotations for the work (this is in hand). The new plan allows us to complete the extension without disrupting the current layout of the existing building except for providing a new WC for the men. Below is the new layout showing everything, but initially the ladies changing room, kitchen and bar remain unchanged until we have a handle on the finances.