Paul Maddock is the new UK Bowling European Corporative (BEC) and British Corporative Bowling (BCB) representative. He has kindly taken the time to explain more about the BEC and BCB.
A bowler since the age of 16 I have over the years been responsible for running leagues, YBC’s and more recently numerous aspects of the RAF Tenpin Bowling Association including the running of tournaments and one of their representative teams. Having now completed my RAF career I continue to bowl as a member of the RAF Veterans squad and having enjoyed both the competition and social elements that the BCB and BEC offers over many year since I attended my first European finals back in 2002 at the Tali bowl in Finland, have decided to use my acquired skills to ensure the UK remains an active and pivotal member of the organisation and that UK companies continue to enjoy the benefits being members bring.
The BCB is the UK arm of the BEC and exists to promote the sport of tenpin bowling inside the realms of British companies of all sizes, thereby encouraging competition between these companies in a competitive but friendly manner. The UK has been fairly successful over the years with countless British Companies not only making the finals (top 12) but also making the podium on numerous occasions. In the four person team 1975 saw the first UK winners, a team from Heathrow Auto’s taking the glory, whilst a team from Halifax Building Society repeated the event in 2005. In the doubles Barclays Bank were the dominating force during the 1980’s winning that event consecutively in 1984 & 1985 with many other podium finishes in the surrounding years. The latter years have proved less successful in the way of podiums but with our continuance in getting a good number of teams into the finals each year here’s hoping that success is just around the corner.
Now approaching its 48th year the BEC began life in Geneva on 7th June 1970 where the first official meeting of the BEC Committee was held during a tournament organised by the international association of leisure. Attended by 6 countries including Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium and Great Britain the meeting set out the rules and policies that the organisation would follow, with the first European Championship for Corporative Bowling being held in Berlin a year later in 1971.This year’s event will see the teams from the member nations travelling to Lille in France to once again compete for the title of Bowling Corporative Champions, with Helsinki and Berlin being the venues for the next 2 years, the return to Berlin in 2020 marking the organisations 50th anniversary year.
Members of the organisation from its inception, where the UK was initially represented by Mr Les Woolley, Operations manager for Ambassador Bowling Limited, London, Great Britain has over the years played a huge part in keeping the competition and the committee alive supplying the organisations general secretary over many years Jock Caie having held the position for numerous years with Jeff Davis the current incumbent for the past four plus years.
Jeff has also been the backbone of the BCB, running and overseeing its operation in one form or another for numerous years, a position that culminated last year when together with a dedicated band of helpers he oversaw the UK hosting the European finals in MFA Nottingham. Amid difficult conditions, and the hottest temperatures the UK had experienced in a long time, he and his team ran a very successful event culminating in an excellent end of tournament dinner that saw the social aspects of the organisation come to the fore. Regrettably this was his final act on behalf of the BCB as after 25 years he has decided to relinquish his reigns and allow someone else to take on the challenge of heading the UK representation at the BEC and planning and organising the Great Britain National Corporate Finals.
So here we are bang up to date and having now taken on the mantle of the UK BEC/BCB Representative from Jeff I’d like to take this opportunity to invite all UK companies to come together to compete against each other at one of 3 tenpin bowling disciplines; 4 person team, Ladies Doubles or Mixed Doubles. The event will take place over the weekend of the 13th – 14th January 2018 at Stroud bowl in Gloucestershire, has been sanctioned by the BTBA and has already seen interest from regular attendees such as Barclays Bank, Ladbrokes Coral, The RAF, London Underground, BA, the Post Office, the MOD & the RAF Veterans. There is no limit on how many teams a company may enter, although each member of a team must either work for the company that they representing or have been awarded a pension from that company. Full details, rules and costs can be found in the entry form or by visiting the BCB website (http://www.britishcorporativebowling.org/) or the BCB British Corporate Bowling Facebook pages.
The winning teams will then qualify for automatic entry to represent Great Britain at the BEC European Finals, which as stated can be held in any one of 13 countries around Europe, this year’s event being held in Lille over the period 8th to 12th May 2018. The BEC tournament brings together on average 120 four person teams each of whom will have qualified in the same manner in their own countries finals. Further details of the event can be found through the BEC website (http://www.bec.org.uk/).