A LONG-standing crown green bowling club in Barnsley is hoping new members will roll up and join them next weekend at a free taster session.

Locke Park Bowling Club will be hosting a Bowls’ Big Weekend event on Saturday at Locke Park.

Bowls’ Big Weekend is a national event that provides a great opportunity for people to learn more about the sociable and accessible sport.

Club members will be on hand to teach beginners the basics.

Secretary of the club, Anne Slawycz, told the Chronicle: “Bowling is great because it keeps you fit and healthy and it’s excellent for improving your mental health.

“Participating in a sport also helps improve self-esteem and gives you the opportunity to meet new people and get out and about.

“A lot of people suffer with loneliness and sometimes finding an activity you enjoy and can get into helps a lot with those feelings.

“We hope the taster day will gain interest from those who are young, old and those with a disability.

“We can cater and accommodate for everyone and we want people to know that.

“I think a lot of people think bowling is typically for the older generation, but that isn’t the case at all.

“Everyone is welcome it’s a sport for all.”

Jean Yoxall, the club’s oldest member at age 91 who’s been a member for 35 years said joining the club alongside her husband was the ‘best thing she’s ever done’ and has no plans to call it a day any time soon.

She said: “I absolutely love this club, the sport itself and its members.

“I’ve met some really lovely people everyone looks out for each other.

“Every time I’m here one of the members will ask me if I need a lift home, it’s a brilliant community spirit and I enjoy socialising and keeping myself busy.

“I don’t have any plans to stop soon I was quite unwell over Christmas which put a stop to me being able to take part but I feel better now thankfully and I’m hoping I can get back into the games.”

When asked how she got into the sport, she explained how the idea spurred from one of her and her husband’s friends who suggested trying something new.

She added: “My husband used to play golf and a number of other activities, and one day a friend of ours asked if we wanted to give bowling a go so we did.

“We’ve loved it ever since.”

Next Saturday’s event will take place from 10.30am to 4pm and light refreshments will be available.