The Gambart Baines Challenge Cup, first won by Mr Zena Smith from Cleckheaton in 1919 is still proving to be popular ninety years later. This annual competition played on two crown greens in Alexandra Gardens, part of the Scarborough Bowls Centre, attracts competitors from all over Britain.The competition is organised and managed by volunteers from the nine clubs who make up the Scarborough and District Crown Green Bowling Association, on behalf of Scarborough Borough Council.
Shirley Groves, one of the main organisers said, "The support we receive from local bowlers is tremendous and the location for the competition is superb. The staff at the Scarborough Bowls Centre are most pleasant and visitors can enjoy a full English breakfast before play commences at 10.00 prompt and refreshments and meals are available all day"
The final takes place in October when a minimum of 32 qualifiers compete for the magnificent Gambart Baines Cup,presented by the Mayor of the Borough Scarborough.
Ernest Gambart Baines (1858-1920) Ernest Gambart Baines, was born in 1858, the son of Clementina Baines, who owned a waxworks, which toured in both England and France with Madam Tussaud. Originally brought up in Newcastle, he moved to Leeds from where he, like his mother, operated a touring waxworks. He moved to Scarborough in the early 1900's and ran the Gambart Waxworks exhibition in Scarborough from 1904. One of his interest was Crown Green Bowling and he was associated with the Pavilion Bowling Tournament for many years and gave considerable support to the Scarborough Bowling Tournament. The handsome Challenge Cup which is used today was first presented by Ernest Gambart Baines in 1919. He was a staunch Conservative and represented Scarborough's Central Ward from 1917 until his death in 1920. He was a generous benefactor and presented the town with its first motor fire engine, named Jessie after his wife. He also gave Scarborough the Foreshore water fountain as well as supporting Christ Church by providing prayer books.
Qualifying rounds Thursdays 30th May to 12th September, PLUS Bank Holiday Mondays 27th May and 26th August. Play commeces at 10.00am (scratch time 10.45am at Management discretion).
Entry fee £7.00 per person (Non refundable). Car parking £1 all day (excluding Cricket Festival and Bank Holidays). Cheques to be made payable to "Scarborough Indoor Bowls Centre Ltd."
FINALS DAY Saturday 14th September.
First Prize £750, Runner-up £400, All qualifiers £50.
Entries should be received by the Centre by 6.30pm on the evening prior to the chosen competition date for a guaranteed place in that competition.