BROOMFIELD BOWLS CLUB

Portland Road, Birmingham, B17 8LS

www.broomfieldbc.com

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Peter Gwilt - Two pieces of history...

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In 1981 on Saturday 22nd August, 24 players went out to play bowls for Broomfield. The Alliance team playing in their first season (Division 8) had 12 winners at home to Nettlefolds (GKN, Smethwick). The Premier side playing in Division 9 travelled to Yardley Wood to play The Haven (School Road) and won by 85 shots with 11 winning cards. Just one loser that day for Broomfield and the founder of the 'Failed' club... Peter Gwilt. The scorecard is displayed below and in the corner of the green at Broomfield, a small stone plaque was set in concrete with the details of the infamous day in 1981. The plaque travelled with us upon our relocation to Portland Road in 2010.

In 1983 Peter made more history by becoming the first player at Broomfield to win all five club competitons. In the same year he was named bowler of the year.

1976 Ken Wharton Handicap Cup
1977 William Purcell Pairs (w/ Harry Kendrick)
1981 Alfred Neale Club Championship
1982 Edgar Cole Chairmans Shield
1983 Neale Cup

 

Peter pictured in 1976 as part of the Oldbury team that won Division 1 three years running (1974, 1975, 1976)
27 years later pictured at Frank and Sheila Newman's golden wedding anniversary dinner

 

Between 1981 and 1983 Peter Gwilt was in brillaint form and second only to Roy Freeman. He achieved a plus of a 100 or more three seasons running in the Warwick & Worcester Premier team:

Played
Won
Plus
1981
17
15
106
1982
18
14
108
1983
18
15
128

Peter also held the role of Secretary in 1976, Oldbury 'A' Captain in 1982 and Smethwick 'A' Captain in 1988. 1988 was also his final season for the club and many felt he stopped playing in his prime and could have gone to do well in the higher divisions of the W&W. Superstition may also have played a part as Peter told the tale that he was one of many Peter's at Broomfield (Peter Gwilt, Darby, Wassell, Hargrave, Nichols). He had seen two of them pass away at the club, Peter Hargrave in the function room in 1987 dancing with Janice Freeman and Peter Wassell in 1988 on the green during a league match against The Olde House At Home.

'Gwilty' and Linda have attended various Broomfield functions over the years. In 2007 he presented certificates to several new life members.

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As a sad addendum to this article which was last edited in 2013, Peter Gwilt passed away in July 2018 aged 66. In January of that same year he had intimated his desire to practice the Broomfield green at Portland Road with a view to once again taking up the game some 30 years since he last played.

J Blakeman 24.01.19