Castleton Bowling and Social Club


For latest Newsletter see Gallery


Ist edition was in December 2017

In That  first edition

Our club has been going strong since 1868 so next year is, believe it or not, our 150th Anniversary

To mark this (no pun intended) we have decided to have a regular newsletter thoughout the next year in order to keep members informed about our intended celebrations on such an historic occasion.

We are going to have prize competitions, a garden party and of course a full season of bowling from April onwards.

Your editor  is DESPERATELY LOOKING FOR FODDER PARTICULARLY FORTHCOMING EVENTS so do email him any articles photos and forthcoming events to

History of Castleton Bowling Club-call for people to buy shares in 1867 followed by Rochdale Observer Article of Green opening in May 1868 with much celebration and revelry judging by description in Rochdale Observer! see gallery

March Newsletter 2018

President Mark writes

We plan a few events in our 150th Anniversary year. The bowling green will open on 1st April Easter Sunday so let’s look forward to a great season.

Please put a note in your diaries to come to our Garden Party at the club on Saturday May 12th when we plan to have lots to eat and entertainment-details to follow next month.


Club Treasurer John Penman writes

      Presentation Evening    

Saturday 18th November 2017 was the club’s annual presentation evening and what a night it was! 

Over 60 members and guests were treated to entertainment from Rochdale’s own ‘Singing Jeweller’ otherwise known as John Alexander - who sang a wide range of numbers with something to suit all tastes.  John doesn’t take a fee, but the club made a generous donation to one of the many charities he supports through his appearances.

The bar was open throughout the evening to quench thirsts and a tasty meat and potato pie supper was served at half time (with of course with a veggie option).

The raffle was generously supported and made over £110 – so many thanks to all those who donated prizes. The Floodlit League Shield was won by Heywood with Chesham as runners up. Heywood's Phil Mainwaring received the sheild-see gallery

Floodlit Knock-Out Cup was won by TBA received by Mike Smith with Buersil as runners up

A big thank you must go to Sharon Greenwood for running the competition in such a well managed way and becoming club person of the year.  The competition brings in significant revenue for the club and it is a really valuable lifeline – so long may it continue!

Congratulations also to Andy Jackson -Averages winner and Runner up in Thursday D league and to all the club members who were finalists or runners up in the season’s weekend competitions.

Tales from a Rookie Bowler

I have been a member since the 90s and have been a regular snooker and billiard player ; the club was in the Ormes league in it’s smoke- filled heyday and more recently the billiards team has flourished After a bit of a nagging from Mr President I entered the rarefied world of crown green bowling in 2016 and played for the reserves being a reserved person myself.

I have heavy equipment I was pointedly told and I was even more mystified to hear I’d struggle to perform on dry sunny days! This later became evident on wet days as well so perhaps the ambient conditions and weight of my bowls played less of a part than the quality of my deliveries. Despite an up and mainly down season but with much raucous humour and encouragement from fellow reservists I had another go in 2017.Practice helped and so the team began to suffer less with my sardonic humour and enjoyed seeing a happy jig at the end of my very occasional successes.

The great thing about bowling is the people you meet, a chance to see the greener parts of Rochdale and there’s the exercise to keep you fit.

And so I look forward to 2018 and another battle with the pegs and gritty opponents.

I may carry several hats not just to keep the sun and rain off but also to have something to wave when pegs go right.

It’s our 150th year and it is going to be the best yet!

Elvet Smith

New website launched!

Rochdale Online has given the club access for it to have a  new website recently

It’s got links to’s fixtures for the club this year.

If you wish to add pictures/articles send them to your editor at

History of Castleton Bowling Club

Looking around the club  you may have seen the President’s Chair There is an inscription on a brass plate which says


Presented to the Club 

President By

Mr Thomas Oldham

The Secretary

It’s a fine  chair  and hasn’t a woodworm hole in it!

Notable Rochdale events from 1868 when our club was founded

Feb 27th Ploughing matches were promoted by Gentlemen in Thornham to encourage the art. They became an annual fixture for many years.

March -Anti Popery riots (Murphy riots)took place between March 14 and 18;Public Hall and St John’s RC Church attacked and much damage done;30 Hussars billeted in Rochdale.

July -Mr J.P.Dicken unsuccessfully appealed against the Justice’s decision ordering destruction of 3,804 copies of the “Depravity of the Priesthood”.

Aug-The American Government presented to the Town Council a beautifully bound volume containing a compilation of the addresses to Mrs Abraham Lincoln on the President’s death.

Great Drought extending over 3 months and causing the stoppage of many mills and workshops ,ended

Water obtained from Messrs Stott’s Dearnley Colliery had for several weeks previously been doled out to householders from carts and supplies also obtained from mill lodges.

Sept 25th 1868 Castleton Bowling Club, Merefield , formed. Green opened May 29th  1869 Mr R Lawton President


There is a picture of a Garden Party at the club on Saturday September 12th

1925-see gallery

the reason for the Garden party is not clear but obviously a posh do- over 140 people with 1920s fashion-cloche hats,  fir coats and white silk stockings for the ladies and three piece suits,dress shirts and ties/bowties for the men.Also the odd Fedora and Homberg felt hats were on display.Important looking people –the great and good of Rochdale? Note bowls on the green very neatly laid out-team captains may try this out?

Back to the present day

your club committee team is

John Penman Treasurer, Bill Schofield secretary, Charles Robinson, President Mark Davies, Sharon Greenwood, Stuart Lewis, Julie Ferguson,         John Pinhay, Elvet Smith

John Penman writes

“We all need to try and encourage younger people to join the club (friends and family members) as the number of members needs to increase if we are to remain solvent.  After all it's a good family club to belong to.”


Billiards team has had a reasonable season and the brand new cloth (paid for by the players) has been much admired Team is

Neil Sharrocks, John Ingham, Bill Schofield, Mark Burkin, Elvet Smith, Mark Davies,Andrew Jackson.

We need new players -do get in touch if interested.-Tuition is available most Tuesday evenings.





Contact Information

Castleton Bowling and Social Club

Ashton Street
OL11 3RT

Tel: 07885 154322

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