The partnership between BowlsWales and the Women’s Institute (WI) was established to encourage collaboration across sectors and promote women within sport. The National Governing Bodies identified a decline in female participation across the sport which this partnership aims to tackle, whilst offering bowls in the most accessible way. The project involves working closely with the WI federations and their nearest bowls club to create weekly beginner bowls sessions, women only open days as well as providing an opportunity to socialise and play.

The project has been particularly successful at Ogwr Indoor Bowls club. The club applied to the Be Active Wales Fund and were successful in obtaining funding to help with facility hire and equipment such as bowls to support the session. The club have frequently seen 20 women attend the sessions with half of the group now intending to join their local outdoor bowls clubs ready for the new season.

Wynne Walters, Chairman of Ogwr Indoor Bowls Club said,

“Our Ladies Section numbers have been dwindling at Bridgend, so it was great for our Club to link up with the local WI and this Bowls Wales initiative. The 10-week taster sessions was a great success. I know a good number of the ladies are going to continue bowling in their local outdoor clubs and I’m sure we shall see them indoors next season”

“As always these sessions can only be run with the support of our Club volunteers and a really big thank you to our coaches and lady committee members who made this happen.”

Sandra Davidson, Vice Chairman, Glamorgan Federation of Women’s Institute went on to say,

“We were pleasantly surprised as to the response we had from our members when we put out to them what BowlsWales were offering. We had 100 members show an interest and we hope that we have a lot of interest in the outdoor bowls. During the Saturday morning sessions, we have noticed new friendships are being formed whilst taking part in exercise”.

This example is just one way of how this partnership can offer bowls opportunities to the WI members as well as supporting clubs across Wales to increase their female participation. A huge credit to Ogwr Indoor Bowls Club for their work over the last 10 weeks, well done to all involved. We have many other WI sessions running across Wales within clubs and attending WI groups. If you are interested in finding out further information on how we can support your club or your WI group, please get in contact with the BowlsWales team: or