In early 1955 a group of 30 bowlers got together and    arranged a bowls tour. Under the directorship of Chairman / Captain A. G. Smart of the Tithe Green BC and Secretary      C. J. Uncles from Worthing Pavilion BC, they left Worthing Central Railway Station on 15th May 1955 by coach and headed for the Royal Hotel, Weymouth. The next day Greenhill BC in Weymouth played host to the clubs first tour match – against Weymouth and District.

On this first tour they travelled under the name of ‘The West Sussex Tourists’ and so successful was the week that it was  decided to put the tour on an official footing and accordingly a meeting was called for 21st July 1955. Mr. Artlett of the Maltravers club was elected President and a name of the Sussex Martlets Bowls Touring Club was agreed. By November 1955 the club name had been changed to it’s current title of the West Sussex Bowls Touring Club, Sussex County BA having objected to any club prefixing it’s name with the word ‘Sussex’.

We would like to record our thanks and appreciation to Worthing Pavilion BC who allow us to play  ‘home’ matches at their venue. We took advantage of this kind offer by hosting matches in 2005 (our 50th year) against both Sussex County and English BA. In 2015 (our 60th year), once again we hosted Sussex County. Thanks also to Worthing Indoor BC who allow us to hold committee meetings and our AGM on their premises.

The club have toured every year since and a total of 349 members have enjoyed bowling with the club on their annual jaunts. This remarkable touring record came to an end in 2020 and 2021 due to the awful Corona-virus Pandemic. We can proudly boast of 18 members who have each toured on 20 or more occasions. Our 2019 tour saw our club secretary Chris Rolph create a new touring record having travelled 36 times. His record has now been extended to 38 tours. The previous record holder Ken Armstrong went on 35 tours before he passed away in May 2014. Steve Hawkes has travelled 33 times and Cecil Wadey 32. Graham Allen, Roger Ayling, Alan Catterson and Harry Gosnell have been on 25. Geoff Armstrong, Ron Hyam, Kevin Mitchell, Cecil Salisbury and Charles Walkden 23, Bill Bryder, Wally Edwards and Ted Lane 22. David Dallyn, Joe Gilpin having achieved 21.


To view a spreadsheet of all the matches (and results) of matches played on tour since 1955 (up to and including our 2023 tour – 2020 and 2021 both cancelled due to Covid) please click WSBTC – tour results etc

To view a spreadsheet of all the members who have toured with the club and the years they travelled (1955-2023) please click WSBTC – tours travelled 1955 to date 23.05.20

To view a spreadsheet of all members the club have had since formation in 1955 please click WSBTC – record of membership (1955 to date) 24.03.26

To view a spreadsheet of all members of the club management committee please click WSBTC – officers and committee – 1955 to 2024


You are interested in becoming a member?
Some information about the club that may help you make your mind up as to whether joining us is for you.
The club was formed in 1955 by a group of bowlers from in and around Littlehampton and Worthing. The sole purpose of the club was to provide social recreation and a bowling holiday for male bowlers. Nothing has changed since these early days except that the club has developed a regular ‘non tour’ fixture list in both the Outdoor and Indoor seasons.
We have been lucky enough to have had in our membership no less than four Sussex County Bowling Association Presidents, three Sussex County Indoor Presidents, at least three Sussex County selectors, our members have won numerous County Competitions and three National Titles.
Although competitive on the green we pride ourselves on being a club for all standards literally from beginners to National Champion. We believe our club has a tremendous reputation for camaraderie both on and off the green and this is paramount in the thoughts of the committee when reviewing applications from new members. Potential members must at the time of their application be a member of a Bowling Club within the County boundary of West Sussex or be a member of a club from outside West Sussex but be resident within West Sussex.

Applicants should be aware that the club is run for members who wish to: a) travel on our annual tour (we usually leave Sussex on the second Saturday in May). b) partake in our ‘non tour friendly’ matches and invited ‘opens’ both indoor and outdoor. c) have an interest in attending our annual dinner (usually the first Friday in May). d) enjoy themselves in the company of likeminded bowlers. The club wear Burgundy coloured shirts (and Burgundy coloured jumpers if one is worn) for all their matches and upon acceptance to the club details will be given re purchase of the garments.






If after reading all the above information you feel the club is right for you please click WSBTC – application form and info page to download an application form. Alternatively please contact the Honorary Secretary on 07876/538583.

THE THOUGHTS OF PRESIDENT JON (posted on 20th November 2023)

Fellow tourists, it is with great pride that I pen my first Presidents message following my election at the recent Annual General Meeting. It is an honour to follow in the footsteps of the previous 26 members who have worn this ‘chain of office’, albeit following the very sad loss of President ‘Nedders’ at the start of this year. To that end, I would like to thank Derek for stepping back up to the role and leading the club throughout 2023.
It was great to see the high turnout at the AGM, including many of the new members who have joined the club over the past 12 months. Whilst some have already experienced their first tour, I hope all new faces enjoy this fantastic club as I have over the past 18 years, and I look forward to meeting up with friends old and new in 2024. It is testament to the club, and in particular the hard work of our Hon. Secretary in arranging such amazing tours, that so many of this year’s first-time tourists have reapplied to tour in 2024.
Additionally, I would like to pass on my congratulations to Derek Ford in receiving his deserved HVLP certificate at the AGM. I restate Del’s words that our club is all about friendships, laughs and possibly one (or several) drinks, as I’ve enjoyed with everyone over my many years touring. Bowling prowess may be a secondary consideration but it is always nice to leave a club singing about another win…!
There will be more from me in the lead up to our 2024 tour to Scarborough, so finally I would like to wish one and all a merry Christmas and healthy New Year (remembering that come early January I will be reverting to my role as Hon. Treasurer and chasing up all outstanding tour monies due). I hope to see you all at the Bognor fixture at Arun Indoors in January.

Jon Clear (President)

CAPTAIN ROGER’S RAMBLINGS (updated on 27th October 2023)

Once again I on behalf of all the members who travelled to Paignton would like to thank Chris and on this occasion Jon who back in 2019 visited the Queens Hotel, Paignton. They identified the venue as perfect for a West Sussex tour and we all benefited from their hard work negotiating a great value deal. It was very enjoyable, a good hotel, good food and most of all good company. We played six matches, winning five. The one we did lose we lost in style (on all six rinks)!

On the way home, we stopped at our usual breakfast stop (this time for lunch) – at the Hinton Arms at Cheriton (Hinton Ampner). I had the Lamb Shank (it was superb) and I ordered two Steak & Kidney pies to take home for the freezer. I’m so glad I did, we’ve had one and I don’t think it would be possible to cram any more meat into this gigantic pie if they tried. Such good value for money.

The outdoor season is done and dusted, I will give a full report of  our matches at the upcoming Annual General Meeting. The first indoor game was played in early October and resulted in a huge loss 39-94. I am sorry I didn’t attend the game but when you support one of the top six clubs in the premiership, you just have to go and watch them! Jon and myself will also miss the game at Adur in a couple of weeks as the mighty Seagulls are at home again on that day.

I would like to bring to your attention that despite reminders over twenty of you have still not sent their indoor availability sheets back to me. I can’t pick players I don’t know about. With 8-10  members unable to play due to ill health or age related problems it means that selection has to be made from just 50% of the membership. Please gentlemen pick up the phone and ring me and let me know what dates you can make.

All the best

Captain Roger – I look forward to seeing you on Thursday 16th November (the clubs AGM at Worthing Indoor Bowls Club, Field Place).

CLUB CALENDAR 2024/25 (updated on 27th March 2024)

flagTo view the club calendar of events for 2024 and 2025 please click this link: WSBTC – calendar 2024 and 2025 as at 24.03.26

2023 TOUR CHAMPION – Paul Leatherbarrow

2023 Tour champion Paul Leatherbarrow receives the Ken Armstrong Champions Trophy from Immediate Past President Derek Brockhurst.


Chris Rolph being presented with his engraved trophy to commemorate his attaining a club record of 36 consecutive tours in 2019. Paul Armstrong the son of the previous record holder Ken Armstrong travelled to Tenby to present the award. Chris has now extended his number of tours to 38.


Our new President Jon Clear proudly wearing his Presidential Chain after being presented with it by Acting President Derek Brockhurst at the 2023 AGM.


Derek Ford receives his HLVP certificate from Acting President Derek Brockhurst at the AGM in November 2023. Congratulations Derek.





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