A green is a living thing and from time to time expert advice and action is necessary so that a high standard of playing surface is maintained. Time honoured treatment in the early days was 3 cwt. of bone meal and a bag of soot with the odd load of sand from the beach and turf from the Mill Dam when required. In 1918 concern was with moss; nearer the centenary it is with thatch, a condition in which the roots extend themselves horizontally rather than growing downward. This problem affects many golf course greens and is eminently treatable as the fine greens at Balwearie, once so affected, endorse. It is a tribute to the Club officials that the condition has been recognised and that remedial action has been taken.

 

With an extension in the offing in 1919 when the Club was still on gaslight, it was decided to increase the membership to 130. The greenkeeper was asked to lay out seven rinks so that the various club ties could be played expeditiously. Among those recruited was the Rev. J. M. Hunter, Abbotshall Parish Church Minister. A later committee must have found the 130 excessive for by 1933 membership was restricted to 105 playing members.

A near disaster in 1914 - a proposal to abolish the sale of alcoholic drinks - was only averted at the AGM on a technicality. The temperance lobby again reared its head at the AGM of 1924 when a temperance winter club was mooted. The answer was "no".

The operation for the supply of drink was conducted from a "press" or large cupboard. The relevant committee was thus named the "Press Committee" and spoke in terms of profit from the "Press".

The lack of any involvement by the fair sex proved one of the drawbacks on the catering side and provision for teas on match days had to be met by outside contractors, usually bakers. Estimates for the catering were requested annually and among those who were involved in this service over the years were: Carlton, Goodsir, Law, Links Bread Society, Rialto, Stuart, Stevenson, Pillans and Venters.

Teas turned to a storm in a teacup in 1921 when the secretary, Robert Sutherland was asked to explain the minutes of the meeting of September 26. Minuted was "Profuse thanks were showered by the Vice-President, Mr Drennan, on the Press Committee for the season's work but the work accomplished by the Secretary and Treasurer was never mentioned; the Club as a Bowling Club seemingly being treated as of secondary consideration and the "Press" would now be the all in all of the Club". Though the Secretary resigned over the matter a minute of the October Committee Meeting added thanks to other officials for their work during the season. Which shows that thanks in the right direction at the right time goes a long way to oil the wheels of the administration. Presidents - neglect the secretary and treasurer at your peril.

In 1929 the Club moved right into the modern era - central heating was installed and a telephonic link was established. The previous means of communication with members was through the Public Notices section of the Fifeshire Advertiser, Fife Free Press and Courier. Even at that the telephone was still in its infancy, the number of subscribers comparatively few.

 

         The Club took on an international appearance in August 1926 when a team of South African bowlers were visitors to the Green.

The visit was under the auspices of the Fife Bowling Association to whom the West End gave courtesy of the premises.

Great preparations were made; bunting and a floral display by Mr McLean of Raith Gardens surrounded a Clubhouse which had

been specially spring cleaned at a cost of £2. A photographer was engaged to record the occasion and what a scene it turned

out to be - a huge WELCOME sign atop a clubhouse bedecked like a stage set from the Arabian Nights. Certainly the South

African bowlers did visit again for our Centenary President, John Urquhart, is thanked in minutes on one such occasion for his

help in decorating the clubhouse. An Australian touring side have also visited the Green and the West End has been

particularly popular with bowling tourists from all over Britain and Ireland.

The name of a notable Kirkcaldy worthy crops up in a minute of September, 1922, when Mr Bob Rippon was engaged as pianist for a smoking concert at the Club. Mr Rippon, an excellent musician, was for a time organist at the Chapel, Dunnikier Road, and would overcome the "bona fide" traveller requirements for Sunday drinking in novel fashion, by declaring “Chapel - returning" - Chapel village was, of course, a journey of requisite length for a liquid refreshment to be served by the Kirkcaldy licensee of Bob's chosen hostelry.

 

In 1931 there was consultation with architects Welsh and Johnson over proposed alterations to the Clubhouse. At a SGM, however, on January, 1932 it was decided not to proceed. That was again the decision in 1935 and in 1947 when a proposal by Mr J. Nicoll to extend the club premises at a cost of £250 was defeated by 77 votes to 40.

 

Things once more got underway in 1952 when separate proposals were submitted one by Bailie Fleeting, to extend the club by taking in the verandah; the other by Mr Lister, that the "Press" premises be enlarged. At the AGM of 1952 it was agreed in principle to extend and eventually a compromise scheme drawn up by Hutchon and Armstrong, was approved at a SGM in January, 1953.

 

President A. J. Crosbie was instrumental in hurrying along the scheme and the first part of the alterations was targeted to be carried out before the opening of the green in 1953. At a SGM in March, 1953 tenders for the extension were opened and awarded to the following: Masonwork, F. Walker; Joiner, W. Buchanan; Plumber, A. Wishart; Slater and Plasterer, T. Cormic; Glazier, W. Carron. Total tenders amounted to £1,208

In August, 1963 Mr J. Nicoll proposed a new bar extension and toilet block at a cost o£ £500 and on October 1 the plan of the extension was approved. On Saturday, October 19 fire broke out behind the bar after staff had left necessitating attendance by the Fire Brigade. In view of the damage done a revised scheme for the bar was drawn up and submitted to the Dean of Guild Court on November 7. Building went ahead and a claim for £548 was lodged with the fire insurers. Ultimately the green and insurers settled for £450.

The final chapter in Clubhouse extension was written on the evening of May 23, 1969 when the ladies' locker room cum lounge, built at a cost of £1,350, was officially opened by Mrs R. Ritchie, wife of the Club Secretary. The Ladies Section was instituted in 1968 with Mrs A. Henderson, wife of the Club President, as first Lady President. Building was partly funded by a grant from the Scottish Education Department and was undertaken by Frank Walker, Builders. In 1997, equality was introduced with the ladies paying the full subscription and Westend being one of few bowling clubs that decided to pave the way towards equal rights.

Oxford Blue was the colour chosen for the Club Blazer in December, 1923 and Mr Johnston, outfitter, was given the contract to supply. In 1928 the committee showed that they were not short of discipline and one member was informed in writing that, for an undisclosed misdemeanour, "your attendance at West End Bowling Club should permanently cease".

 

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