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Bad news about the Waterloo

Bowling News

The iconic home of crown green bowling is the Waterloo Bowling Club in Blackpool. The future of the green and stands has been the centre of speculation and much activity over the past two years but it looks like the fight to keep the venue for crown green bowling may be coming to an end. This notice from the Committee explains further....

I’m afraid we have some bad news to update you with in relation to the future of The Waterloo. Having got over a number of hurdles – we have been in lease negotiations with the owner and their representatives since the middle of May which, in the end, have proved more problematic that we thought.

Based on the level of investment/expenditure we are required to make on the stadium in order to continue, we decided that we require a long-term lease to secure the Waterloo’s future as a bowls venue. We had previously discussed the principle of that (albeit on a verbal basis) with the owner, but as we have gone through the process of agreeing the final terms of the lease, in the end, the owner has said to us that he is only comfortable in agreeing a 10 year lease with us having no security of tenure beyond that. This length of lease (or even a shorter one) wouldn’t be a problem if the day one expenditure was either nothing or minimal, but it’s not acceptable based on expenditure of £75K +.

We are all extremely disappointed but we always said that everything had to be ‘right’ in order for us to proceed with this project on The Waterloo – and we are not proceeding against a 10 year lease.

At this stage we have left it back with the owner to decide what he wants to do with his land. I must say that the owner was pretty definite when I discussed things with him on Friday that he wouldn’t provide us with a lease for longer than 10 years – so, at this stage, we are not hopeful of there being a solution.

From our side – we are going to stop all expenditure on The Waterloo with immediate effect – including having the green looked after and cut. We are sat on a lot of money in the bank account from Go Fund Me donations, other private donations, money raised from previous 50/50 draws and forward payments for future 50/50 draws (the account balance is £60K currently).

If there is no change to the above position, we will be returning all donations (which will be a massive administration job – so we are going to have to ask people to please bear with us while we sort that out) – and we will have to decide what to do about the 50/50 money we are holding from previous draws, as well as the forward payments people have made for future draws.

We are probably going to see how things pan out over the rest of the summer, however, before we start that process on the donations and make those decisions of the 50/50 money.

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