A Brief History

The English Bowling Federation was formed in 1945, although the grass roots of the Federation may well be traced back some 53 years earlier to the North-East of England, at which time the Northumberland and Durham Bowling Association was formed when four Newcastle Public Park Clubs formed an alliance adapting rules which differed from the stronger and more popular EBA.

News of the "breakaway" spread to the East Midlands, and the less stringent 'Laws of the Game' with regard to the condition of bowling greens - the use of ditches and banks was not compulsory - in effect any reasonable grassed and level area was considered suitable - and this, as well as a flexibility in hours of play was a boon to a work force then working much longer hours than is the case today.

In 1925 Lincolnshire formed an Association, and in Norfolk the game caught on with many public houses providing greens, rather as the Crown Green code had done some thirty or more years earlier, and in 1926 Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Norfolk formed the Midland and East Anglian Bowling Association, and it can reasonably be assumed that from this union the EBF of today was fathered.

Interest spread and in 1929 Northamptonshire, Derbyshire and Suffolk came into the fold to be followed by first Durham and then, in 1936, by their northern neighbours Northumberland. In 1945 this amalgamation of Counties took the title by which today’s English Bowling Federation is instantly recognisable.

The English Women's Bowling Federation came into being in 1957 and the "Twins" enjoy the unique distinction of remaining separate units but with one governing body. There are now Thirteen Counties in membership - of both EBF and EWBF - running down the Eastern side of England and stretching from Northumberland down to North Essex. Those Counties are; Cleveland, Derbyshire, Durham, Humberside, Huntingdonshire, Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Northamptonshire, North Cambridgeshire, North Essex, Northumberland, Nottinghamshire and Suffolk. 

The Federations are also unique in bowls in that they hold dual Championship Weeks when Men’s and Women's Finals are held side by side.

The Outdoor Finals are played in August at Skegness and consist of ten Men’s, ten Ladies' and four Mixed events; in addition there are two Men’s, two Mixed and two Ladies Team Events which are played between the Northern and Southern section winners; 2006 was the Federations 50th successive visit to the popular Lincolnshire resort and with more than 15,000 competitors entering the 'Nationals' yearly, the affairs of the joint bodies are healthy indeed.

On the Indoor scene there isn't the same level of participation, mainly because of the shortage of Indoor green space.  The competitions consist of a 4-Bowl Singles, a 2-Bowl Pairs and 2 Bowl Rinks (3 players) events for both the EBF and EWBF and a mixed two-bowl pairs, two bowl rinks and an Under 25’s Open Singles (for players of either sex) events which are played by the winners of each participating county. There are two EBF team events on the Indoor scene, one for County Executives; there is also a EWBF Executive team event which is played on a round robin basis. To ease travelling during the winter months, the Counties men’s teams are split into North and South Sections, with each Section winner playing for the National Title at Newark. 

In addition the Victor Ludorum Trophy (for Men) and Victrix Ludorum Trophy (for Women) goes to the County with the highest points total from the Finals (Individual and Team) with 2 points for a win and 1 for a runner-up spot.

The ever-popular prelude to Finals Week at Skegness is the Reg Jackson Memorial 'Open Rinks' Tournament played over the first weekend of the Championships by a maximum of 144 rinks playing to a 'Round Robin' format in four sections.

The EBF and EWBF join forces each Spring for their Annual Tour and in a hectic week there are no fewer than six trophies to be competed for.

The winners of the Men's Rinks receive the Stoddard Trophy and the Runners-up take the Oliver Trophy. 

The winners of the Ladies Rinks win the Howard Trophy with the second-placed team winning the Pendleton Trophy.

The Mixed Pairs - an integral part of Federation Bowling - is played for the Ina Thomas Trophy with the runners-up winning the Langham Trophy.

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EVENTS (OUTDOORS)
 
Event
Duration
Trophy
  EBF  
2b Singles 21 Shots Proctor Cup
4b Singles 21 Shots Lincolnshire Cup
U25 Singles 21 Shots Jim Pratt Trophy
Veterans Singles 21 Shots Ludlam Trophy
Champion of Champions 21 Shots Suffolk Trophy
Secretaries Cup 21 Shots Jim Dunn Trophy
Pairs 2b 21 Ends Gratton Trophy
Open U25 Pairs 2b 21 Ends John Woollard Trophy
Senior Pairs 2b 21 Ends Norfolk Cup
Mixed Senior Pairs 2b 21 Ends Past Presidents Cup
Mixed Pairs 2b 21 ends Ludlam Trophy
2b Rinks 21 ends Stoddard Trophy
Mixed Rinks 2b 21 ends Marie Denny Trophy
3b Rinks 18 ends Frank Holmes Shield
  EWBF  
2b Singles 21 Shots Paul Howard Trophy
4b Singles 21 Shots Wyland Trophy
U25 Singles 2b 21 shots Hilda Carver Trophy
Senior Singles 2b 21 shots Anne Saint Trophy
Secretaries Singles 2b 21 shots Ivy Younger Trophy
Champion of Champions 2b 21 shots Freda Wiles Trophy
Pairs 2b 21 ends Alice Rice Trophy
Senior Pairs 2b 21 Ends Suffolk Punch
2b Rinks 21 Ends G.W. Jones Trophy
3b Rinks 18 ends Shepperson & Brown Trophy
  EBF TEAM EVENTS  
Adams Trophy (Six Rinks) 31 Ends  
Newton Trophy (Six Rinks) 31 Ends  
Reg Wright U25s (Four Rinks) 31 Ends  
Durham Centenary Trophy (Four Rinks) 25 Ends  
  EWBF TEAM EVENTS  
Donald Steward Trophy (Six Rinks) 25 Ends  
Silver Jubilee Vase (Six Rinks) 25 Ends  



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EVENTS (INDOORS)
 
EventDurationTrophy
  EBF  
4b Singles 21 Shots Federation Plate
4b Senior Singles 21 Shots Northamptonshire Trophy
Pairs 2b 21 Ends Fred Fossitt Trophy
Mixed Pairs 2b 21 Ends Northumberland Trophy
Rinks 2b 21 Ends Jubilee Trophy
Mixed Rinks 2b 21 Ends Jim Thomson Trophy
  EBF/EWBF  
Under 25's Open Singles 2b 21 Shots The Colleen & John Gooch Trophy
  EWBF  
4b Singles 21 Shots Leah Harrison Challenge Bowl
4b Senior Singles 21 Shots Rushbrook Bowl
Pairs 2b 21 Ends Joan Robinson Rose Bowl
Rinks 2b 21 Ends Lincolnshire Women's Bowling Association Challenge Bowl
  EBF TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP  
Six Rinks 2b 25 Ends Derbyshire Trophy
  EBF TEAM NON-CHAMPIONSHIP  
2 Rinks 2b   Eversley Trophy
  EWBF TEAM NON-CHAMPIONSHIP  
2 Rinks 2b   Harry Carver Trophy


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