Letter: “RIP Springs Town Bowling Club. Will miss you”

Isaac Hattingh from Springs writes:

It is with great sadness that I have to announce the death and passing of Springs Town Bowling Club. Born in 1924, the club died in April 2022, just two years short of our centenary.

Years ago when I started bowling, there use to be 11 bowling clubs in and around Springs. We were the only ones left. This is the only sport that senior citizens could enjoy and now that has been taken away from us.

Is this a way to treat the people who have been loyal to Springs their whole life?

We received a hand-delivered letter from the Ekurhuleni metro informing us that we have to start paying a rent of R10 800 per month and they also want 10% of the money that we make in the bar and tearoom – money that we need to run the club.

To maintain this club is not possible anymore. Eighty percent of the members are retirees.

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We, the bowlers, and a lot of our friends from other clubs in Ekurhuleni spent many joyful hours playing bowls competitions on our greens that were known to be above average, but that is all over now.

Springs Town Bowling Club will now go the same route as Pam Brink Stadium, Springs Jukskei Club, Olympia Park swimming pool, Springs cricket grounds, Springs Tennis Club, Springs netball courts and two of the four Olympia Park Rugby Club fields.

Give them all back to nature. What a shame. Once upon a time, the Olympia Park sports grounds with all the facilities were a gift from Springs municipality to the community of Springs for people to come and enjoy the sport they love. It was fully subsidized and well maintained.

That has all changed over the years. What a pity. I now hope that all the money they are going to get from the rent will be used to maintain all the facilities that are still afloat.

At the Olympia Park sports grounds, two of the four rugby fields are in good condition. Soccer is now played in the Jukskei grounds and I was informed that they do not fall into the same category as us, so they will not be charged a renting fee.

I am heartbroken and angry with what is happening to us. I hope that the other bowling clubs that belong to the Ekurhuleni metro take notice of what is happening here and take precautions to survive.

I was a member for the last 36 years and it is very sad and emotional when I say, “RIP Springs Town Bowling Club. Will miss you.”

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