LOCAL clubs were well represented on the Wiltshire men’s autumn tour this year, a hugely successful president’s tour to Somerset.

Under the stewardship of 2019 county men’s president Dave Williams (Chippenham Park) a total of four games were played in glorious sunshine over a long weekend, with the touring party of 32 based in Taunton, winning all four games in Somerset, to equal last year’s best performance on the Isle of Wight.

Out of the total of 32 players, clubs from Chippenham Park, Royal Wootton Bassett and Marlborough were represented as well as Avon (Melksham), Blue Circle, Spencer Moulton and Winsley.

Besides the 2019 president, the touring party consisted of six former Wiltshire men’s presidents, an ex-South West Counties president, several county officials and other players from around the county, with 14 Wiltshire clubs represented in total.

The opening day saw Wiltshire tourists walk through Vivary Park from their hotel to face local club Taunton.

They recorded a 123-116 success despite being down early on, winning on four rinks, drawing on one and only losing on the other.

Top honours went to the rink skipped by Chippenham Park’s Martyn Whittaker (11 shots).

The tourists recorded a 137-93 victory at Wellington, winning on five of the six rinks and only losing on one.

Top rink honours went to Steve Rose’s foursome (14 shots) on countback.

Sunday saw the Wiltshire tourists face their toughest test of the entire weekend against Taunton Deane.

They came from 47-40 down overall at 10 ends to be tied 68-68 at 15 ends before going behind again 93-88 at 19 ends. However, the team produced a superb late rally to win 108- 98 and complete a Somerset hat-trick.

Wiltshire won on three rinks, drew on one and lost on two, with top honours going to the foursome of John Woodhouse (Avon), Andy Watson (Swindon), Ian Francis (Spencer Moulton) and guest Don Fox (skip, Herts), who triumphed 24-12.

On the way home, Wiltshire visited south Bristol club Yatton.

Despite another slow start and trailing 26-24 after five ends, they rattled-up their fourth successive win and biggest of the tour as they powered past their hosts 132-85.

Wiltshire won on four rinks and lost on the other two, and leading the victory charge was last year’s president Stewart Allison whose rink won handsomely 35-14.

The hugely successful tour also raised funds through involuntary contributions, donations and an end-of-tour bumper raffle, with the £1,150 donated to Visually Impaired Children Taking Action – president Williams chosen charity this year.

Williams’ final task as the 2019 president before handing over the chain of office to John Crowder (Avon) is to present the trophies to all of the competition winners and runners-up at the Wiltshire men’s annual dinner and presentation evening at the Assembly Hall, Melksham, in November.

Wiltshire men’s annual autumn tour next year has been planned for Wales, based in Carmarthen.

2019 Wiltshire Tourists

Stewart Allison (Chippenham Park), Gordon Black (Blue Circle), Harold Bird (Chip Park), John Crowder (senior vice-pres, Avon), Dave Eaton (Royal Wootton Bassett & Shrivenham), Malcolm Ellis (Marlborough), Don Fox (guest), Derek Francis (Avon), Ian Francis (Spencer Moulton), Rodney Giles (Rodbourne Cheney), Cliff Gumm (Winsley) , Mike Hallam (Downton), Peter Harding (Amesbury), Dan Harvey (R Cheney), Bob Hiles (Swindon), Vic Hilton (RWB), Frank Hinchliffe (Westlecot), Danny Holland (Avon), Keith Hutchens (C’ham Park), Tudor Lloyd (S’don), Steve McPake (Avon), Dave Royle, Steve Rose (both R Cheney), John Snell (Alderbury), Mike Tuohy, Andy Watson, Barry Wheeler (all S’don), Philip Wells (Avon), Martyn Whittaker (C’ham Park), John Wilks (RWB), Dave Williams (president, C’ham Park), John Woodhouse (Avon).


v Taunton BC

Rink 1: Dan Harvey lost to A Webb 13-28; Rink 2: Stewart Allison beat H Scragg 23-21; Rink 3: Dave Williams beat M Dunne 22-14; Rink 4: Martyn Whittaker beat D Buckpleham 27-16; Rink 5: Keith Hutchens beat D Bridgeman 20-19; Rink 6: Steve Rose drew with M Miller 18-18.

Score: Wiltshire beat Taunton 123-116

v Wellington BC

Rink 1: Danny Holland beat J Lester 26-12; Rink 2: John Crowder lost to K Brown 16-20; Rink 3: Dave Williams beat M Phillips 26-15; Rink 4: D Harvey beat M Groves 22-14; Rink 5: S Allison beat C Bowden 18-17; Rink 6: S Rose beat B Warnett 29-15.

Score: Wiltshire beat Wellington 137-93.

v Taunton Deane BC

Rink 1: S Rose beat R Jones 20-19; Rink 2: J Crowder drew with T Wiscome 18-18; Rink 3: K Hutchens lost to S Hedger 14-15; Rink 4: D Harvey lost to M Reeve 12-18; Rink 5: Dave Royle beat A Williams 20-16; Rink 6: Don Fox beat T Foxwell 24-12.

Score: Wiltshire beat Taunton Deane 108- 98

v Yatton BC (near Bristol, N Somerset)

Rink 1: S Allison beat P Allen 35-14; Rink 2: K Hutchens lost to D Hunt 14-17; Rink 3: D Williams beat S Pascoe 27-10; Rink 4: Don Fox beat N Jones 19-16; Rink 5: J Crowder beat P Goddard 24-12; Rink 6: D Holland lost to M Withymax 13-16.

Score: Wiltshire beat Yatton 132- Hyde Abbey 147-85.