OPINION: A message from Paulette Hamilton, MP for Erdington

Words and pics supplied by Paulette Hamilton MP

I hope everyone in Erdington, Kingstanding, and Castle Vale enjoyed the Easter break and could spend some valuable time with your family. Easter is a time of hope, renewal, and joy – a time for us to come together, reflect on what matters most.

This spring, it was heartwarming to see our communities come together for Easter, Eid, Vaisakhi and Passover, sharing festivities and traditions, and strengthening the community spirit that makes our area so unique.

These important bonds extend to our amazing local organisations, as was evident during my recent visit to Erdington Court Bowls Club. There, I had the pleasure of congratulating them on receiving the Shared Prosperity Fund from Witton Lodge Community Association.

This grant has funded a new bowls-friendly wheelchair, ensuring that bowling can be accessible to even more members of our community. This is a testament to the power of local organisations working together for the common good.

It’s this spirit that makes me incredibly proud to call our area my home and reminds me of how my own journey began, working as a district nurse in Kingstanding to serving our community as a governor at Yenton Primary School.

But there are so many unsung heroes in our community who work tirelessly, to help others and it is in that spirit that I would like to celebrate this Easter.

I will be finding unsung heroes across Erdington, Kingstanding and Castle Vale and telling them how much they mean to me. Why don’t you do the same.

For more on Paulette Hamilton MP for Erdington visit www.paulettehamilton.org

NEWS: Erdington Court Bowls Club receives grant to encourage locals to ‘Bowl for Health’

Pics supplied by Erdington Court Bowls Club

Erdington Court Bowls Club (ECBC) has been given a grant of £6,453 to offer bowls sessions to local individuals and groups as part of its ‘Bowl for Health’ programme – awarded through the Erdington Neighbourhood Network Scheme (ENNS)

Each session, held weekly, will last an hour, with participants paying only £2.50 which will also include a drink and biscuit at the clubhouse.

All equipment and training is supplied by ECBS, a registered charity, and no previous bowls experience is necessary to take part. The Erdington based bowls club are keen for ‘all ages and abilities’ to join in on the sport.

Club Marketing Officer and Trustee Ray Woods said: “The news of this grant was fantastic. It enables us to build on the experience of hosting a ‘Bowl for Health’ programme last year – and also hosting  groups of special needs school students and adults.

“Our ultimate goal is to provide 9-10 hours of fun bowls per week in our indoor arena.

“We have links with the North Birmingham Branch of Parkinson’s UK and they are already receiving their initial coaching. We also have other groups who are interested.

“We also plan to use the sessions to increase ethnic, disabled, and female involvement in bowls.

The grant has been awarded by the Erdington Neighbourhood Network Scheme and Birmingham City Council, in association with Witton Lodge Community Association.

EBCS launched their ‘Bowl for Health’ programme in 2022, using the sport to encourage both social engagement and a healthier lifestyle.

Sport is well known for helping to reduce stress and anxiety, as well as building team dynamics and a sense of community. Bowls in particular can improve eye and hand coordination, as well as offering company in a sociable setting through the Erdington based club.

Ray Woods added: “The sessions aim to address loneliness, isolation, and depression, and this complements our three Warm Welcome Space events each week.

“Already, the grant has enabled us to buy more bowls to enable us to run the sessions to larger groups.”

Erdington Court Bowls Club was founded as a youth club around 1900 by the Erdington Wesleyan Methodist Church, with tennis and cricket preceding bowls – which was introduced in 1925.

In 1976, Erdington Court Bowls Club built one of the first six rink artificial greens in the world. In addition, a full length four rink indoor arena was built, approximately 30 metres long, which hosts both flat and crown green bowlers from clubs in the area.

Erdington Court Bowls Club is part of the Erdington Recreational Trust (ERT) – a registered charity whose aims are to provide recreational and leisure facilities for the people of Erdington and the surrounding area.

Paulette Hamilton MP for Erdington said: “It’s absolutely terrific news that Erdington Neighbourhood Network Scheme has awarded Erdington Court Bowls Club £6,453 to deliver their ‘Bowl for Health’ programme.

“The club is doing some great work and during my recent visit, I learned about their amazing Warm Welcome Space events that are helping local people through the cost of living crisis this winter.”

For more on Erdington Court Bowls Club visit www.erdingtoncourtbowlsclub.org.uk or call 07967 686230