2018 Volunteers

Once again we are seeking your help in carrying out the jobs which need to be done by members for the club to function effectively and to identify which league teams (if any) you wish to play in.

Firstly a bit of background. The club pays an annual lawn rental to the Council for use of the lawns and the clubhouse, which is shared with the bowlers. The Council mow and maintain the lawns, and paint the white lines. That is all they do. Everything else  –  laying out the lawns and hoop settings, looking after the club house, looking after the playing equipment, running the fixture lists, arranging coaching , running club sessions, etc  –  is done by club members who volunteer to do so.

This year we are looking for seven teams of helpers for different aspects of running the club, and we hope all members are able to volunteer to help one way or another on one of the teams (or more than one, if you like!). That way, everyone does a little; nobody has to do a lot.

The teams are:

Lawns set up – Led by David Boyd and Robin Tasker
Measure out the lawns, set out the hoop positions and drill the hoop holes at the start of the season. Move the hoop holes slightly at intervals during the season, when rabbit runs develop. Do any other maintenance work not done by the council, e.g. maintaining the stop boards at the lawn edges.

David and Robin are currently planning to lay out the main lawn boundaries in mid March and don’t need assistance. However on Thurs 22 March and Sat 24 March a large team is required to position the hoop holes for both full and short lawns, starting at 10 am on both days. These dates depend on the weather and state of the lawns and we are still awaiting confirmation from the Council that the lawns will be cut and marked within this timetable.

Lawns watering – Led by David Guyton
In view of the deterioration of the lawns during a hot and dry spell last year, this year the club has undertaken to the Council that, if watering is required to keep the lawns healthy, we’ll provide a team of volunteers to help. We therefore need a “pool” of volunteers “on tap” whenever the lawns need watering. Training in the use of hoses / sprinklers will be arranged.

Should there be a need for any “one off” ground projects the expectation is that all members will help in some capacity.

Equipment – Led by Robin Tasker
Prepare all the playing equipment before the season starts. Paint the hoops, centre pegs, clips and bisques. Maintain the mallets. Do equipment repairs when needed. Keep the equipment store in good order and ensure packing away the equipment in the bins correctly.

Housekeeping – Led by Pat Clare.
Spring clean the clubhouse at the start of the season. After that, clean the clubhouse once a month. A rota is set up at the start of the season, usually with 3 people on each session. With enough helpers, everyone gets to clean the club house just once in the season.

The major spring clean is planned for Sat 24 th March at 2 pm after the lawns have been laid out.

Catering – Led by Sarah Andrew
All home league matches for 2018 will be on a “bring your own lunch” basis. However, Chester will continue to provide lunches for teams visiting from outside the region (dates to be decided) for national inter-club competitions and for regional events (one in May and one in August) when volunteers will be needed to set out food, make hot drinks, clear away afterwards and load the dishwasher.

Social events – Led by Sarah Andrew and Sally Slater
During the season, the team organise a number of social croquet events (e.g. on the first Sunday of each month). They also plan events during the winter, which have proved an excellent way for members to keep in contact when croquet cannot be played. Additional members will be very welcome.

Sally Slater handles internal club wide communications and external press relations. Hugh Bray runs the club website with David Guyton looking after its design and structure. The website is becoming increasingly important both in running the club and managing external relations (including other parts of the croquet world). We are also interested in setting up a social media page (probably Facebook). If you have skills or experience in this area, especially social media, please volunteer to join the existing team.

As well as all the internal club sessions and competitions, the club has entered 7 teams in the North West Federation leagues. We are also entering a number of regional tournaments and national competitions.

Most league teams are made up of four people, who play single and doubles games. Handicap matches cater for all levels of players and we encourage any player who has a good grasp of the basics to play (You don’t have to be a Superstar – in fact the handicap system makes it hard work for Superstars.) Playing against other clubs is an excellent way of improving your game by encountering different players and tactics and of meeting new people who are invariably a very friendly bunch. At away matches, it’s fun to play on different lawns and, believe it or not, some of them actually have no slope! For away matches, we usually arrange to travel in one car and share the petrol costs, so don’t be put off by transport worries.

We don’t have the same four people playing in a team all season, so by offering to play in a team, you’re not committing to a match every week. With a pool of people the chances are you will play in just one or two matches for any particular league, across the whole season. You can play in more than one league. A league programme is laid out for the season (but matches do get changed). The Chester team managers (listed below and on the website) produce a programme of teams for each scheduled match.

The teams are:

Level Play Golf – two teams organised by Pat Clare and Jayne Taylor
Handicap Golf – organised by Maureen Ivens
Short Lawn Association – organised by Maureen Corrigan
Full Lawn Handicap Association (weekend) – organised by David Boyd
Full Lawn Handicap Association (mid week) – organised by John Dawson
Advanced Association – organised by Jerry Guest

Please indicate which teams you are willing to play in and indicate which dates ( e.g. booked holidays) you are not available

Now all you need to do is to reply by e-mail to Pat Clare before Wednesday, 7 March,  (remember, this is not her regular email address). Alternatively, download and print the form attached ,  record your choices and send it to

Pat Clare
20 The Spinney
Wirral CH64 6RX

If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact Pat Clare or myself. Many thanks for reading this and for choosing how you can help. Your response is important in ensuring we all have another busy and successful playing season in 2018.

John Dawson