Club Constitution

  1. Title
    1. The Club shall be called Ashford (Middlesex) Bowling Club hereafter to be referred to as “the Club” and shall be affiliated to Bowls England, Middlesex County Bowling Association, Middlesex County Women’s Bowling Association and any other organisations deemed to be in the Club’s interest.
  2. Objects
    1. The Club is formed for the purpose of promoting the playing of the game of bowls.
  3. Membership
    1. Membership of the Club shall be open to any person, regardless of race, age, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief or ability, who completes a membership application form and pays the relevant subscription/joining fee as determined by the Club.
    2. The members of the Club shall consist of Full Playing Members, Junior Members (aged 18 or under), Social Members, Honorary Vice Presidents and Life Members.
  4. Conduct
    1. Any Member, whose conduct is, in the opinion of two thirds of the Committee, considered as prejudicial to the welfare of the Club, shall be requested to resign or alternatively will be expelled from the Club.
    2. The member must be informed that his/her conduct is under review and be given reasons for such a review. He/she shall be allowed to make representation to the Committee defending his/her actions. If the member is dissatisfied with the decision of the Committee he/she may appeal. A disciplinary Sub-Committee consisting of the President, Bowls Club representative to the WR Sports Ltd. Board and one other member will meet to deal with misconduct by any Bowls Club Member on Sports Club property.
  5. Officers
    1. The Officers of the Club shall consist of the President, Deputy President, Honorary Secretary (Executive Officer), Honorary Treasurer (Executive Officer), Club Captain (Executive Officer), 2 Vice-Captains, Mid-Week Captain, Honorary Match Secretary and Honorary Competition Secretary, a Child Protection Officer (if appropriate). There shall also be three General Committee Members, including a WRS Representative and an Ashford Sports Club representative plus two others, who shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting. Any member shall be eligible to hold office. Where two or more candidates are proposed for the above Offices, a ballot will be held and the majority vote will apply.
  6. Election of Officers
    1. All Officers shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting of the Club, from, and by, the members.
    2. All Officers are elected for a period of one year, but may be re-elected to the same office or another office the following year.
    3. Any vacancy that occurs between the Annual General Meeting may be filled by someone elected by the Committee.
  7. General Committee
    1. The affairs of the Club will be controlled by a General Committee: comprising 3 Executive Officers and up to 12 Officers elected from, and by, the Annual General Meeting. The General Committee shall meet monthly and not less than four times per year.
    2. The duties of the General Committee shall be:
      1. To control the day-to-day running of the Club on behalf of the members.
      2. To keep accurate accounts of the finances of the Club through the Honorary Treasurer.
      3. To co-opt additional members of the Committee as the Committee feels necessary. Co-opted members shall not be entitled to vote on the Committee.
      4. To make decisions on the basis of a simple majority vote. In the case of equal votes, the Chairperson shall be entitled to a second and casting vote.
      5. To appoint Sub-Committees as necessary to fulfil the Club’s business.
  8. Finance
    1. The Committee shall raise and expend monies for the purpose defined in the rules. This includes the recommending of Annual Subscriptions to the Annual General Meeting.
    2. The Financial Year ends on 30th September.
    3. The Honorary Treasurer will keep accurate accounts of the finances of the Club. These should be available for reasonable inspection by members and should be examined by the appointed Auditors before every Annual General Meeting. The club shall maintain current and investment bank accounts. The Honorary Treasurer and 2 other Officers should be able to sign any cheques drawn against Club funds.
  9. General Meetings
    1. The Annual General Meeting shall be held not later than the end of November each year. The Honorary Secretary shall circulate a copy of the notice and the agenda of the meeting to every member at their home address, not less than 14 days before the meeting. Members must advise the Honorary Secretary in writing of any business to be considered at the Annual General Meeting at least 28 days before the meeting.
    2. The business of the Annual General Meeting shall be to:
      1. Confirm the minutes of the previous Annual General Meeting and any General Meetings held since the last Annual General Meeting.
      2. Receive and adopt the Annual Report of the Committee.
      3. Receive and adopt the Statement of Accounts and Balance Sheet, duly audited, to the 30th September preceding.
      4. Elect Officers. These will be proposed and seconded in writing and posted on the notice board in the Club and removed by the Honorary Secretary 28 days before the Annual General Meeting.
      5. Elect the Green Sub-Committee.
      6. Elect 2 members to the General Committee.
      7. Elect two Honorary Auditors.
      8. Transact such other business received in writing by the Honorary Secretary from Members 28 days prior to the meeting and included on the agenda.
    3. Special General Meetings may be convened by the General Committee, or on receipt by the Honorary Secretary of a signed requisition, of at least ten members, the Honorary Secretary shall call a General Meeting of the members submitting to them an agenda showing the reason(s) for calling the meeting. At least 21 days’ notice of the meeting shall be given.
    4. At all General Meetings the Chair will be taken by the President or, in their absence, by a deputy appointed by the Members attending the meeting.
    5. Decisions made at a General Meeting shall be by a simple majority of votes from those Full Members attending the meeting. In the event of equal votes, the President/Chairperson shall be entitled to a second and additional casting vote.
    6. A quorum for a General Meeting shall be 15.
    7. Only Life Members, Honorary Vice Presidents and Playing Members shall be entitled to one vote each at General Meetings.
  10. Alterations to the Constitution
    1. Any proposed alterations to the Club’s Constitution may only be considered at an Annual or Special General Meeting convened with the required written notice of the proposal. Any alteration or amendment must be duly proposed and seconded. Such alterations shall be passed if supported by not less than two-thirds of those members present at the meeting, assuming that a quorum has been achieved.
  11. Indemnity Clause
    1. Each member of the Club shall (to the extent that such person is not entitled to recover under any policy of insurance) be entitled to be indemnified out of all funds available to the Club which may lawfully be so applied against all costs, expenses and liabilities whatsoever [reasonably] incurred by such person in the proper execution and discharge of duties undertaken on behalf of the Club arising there from, or incurred in good faith in the purported discharge of such duties.
      [Save in any such case where any such costs, expenses and liabilities arise in connection with any negligence, default, breach of duty or breach of trust.] [Provided that any such member so indemnified, has been properly authorised in relation to the duties undertaken on behalf of the Club by the General Committee.]
  12. Dissolution
    1. If, at any General Meeting of the Club, a resolution were passed calling for the dissolution of the Club, the Honorary Secretary shall immediately convene a Special General Meeting to be held not less than one month thereafter to discuss and vote on the resolution.
    2. If, at that Special General Meeting, the resolution is carried by at least two-thirds of the members present, the Committee shall thereupon, or at such date as shall have been specified in the resolution, proceed to realise the assets of the Club and discharge all debts and liabilities of the Club.
    3. After discharging all debts and liabilities of the club, a decision will be made at that Special General Meeting regarding the distribution of the remaining assets to another Community Amateur Sports Club.

Appendix A

Ashford Bowling Club incorporates, and upholds within its constitution, the following items of legislation:

Appendix B

Notes on Membership and the Sex Discrimination Act

The full details are attached to the hard copy of the Constitution in the Club House and available on Ashford Bowling Club’s website www.ashfordmiddlesexbowlingclub.co.uk

Further information is also available on the Bowls England website www.bowlsengland.com and from the Bowls England Regulations.

Appendix A

Anti Doping

Bowls England values the contribution that sport can make to health, national pride and social development when fostered within a strong ethical environment. Bowls England identifies integrity, fairness, equity and respect as values essential to success in sport.

Fundamental to sport being enjoyed by all is sporting conduct and the way sport is played. Bowls England commits to playing its part in ensuring that standards are set for fair play and drug-free sport and then promoted through the provision of effective education and information.

The basic principle of Bowls England’s information and education programme for anti-doping shall be to protect the spirit of sport from being undermined by doping.

Ashford Bowling Club acknowledges that it has a duty to provide bowlers with the information and technical advice they need to make informed and responsible choices in compliance with sport’s anti-doping regulations. Up to date advice will be put on the notice board.

Children and Vulnerable Adults

Ashford Bowling Club fully accepts its legal and moral obligation to exercise its duty of care and to protect all children and vulnerable adults participating in its activities, and to safeguard their welfare. We are committed to do this by acknowledging that:

  • The welfare of the individual is paramount;
  • Each individual irrespective of age, gender, religion, race or disability has the right to protection from abuse;
  • Each individual has a right to be safe, and to be treated with respect and dignity.

We shall use our best endeavours to ensure that:

  • All allegations of abuse are taken seriously;
  • The response to them is swift and appropriate;
  • The effectiveness of our policy is reviewed annually;
  • A responsible person shall be appointed annually as Child Protection Officer to whom members can address any concerns.

Discrimination, Equal Opportunities and Human Rights

EQUITY POLICY STATEMENT:

Ashford Bowling Club is responsible for ensuring that no member, volunteer, employee or job applicant receives less favourable treatment on the grounds of age, gender, disability, race, ethnic origin, nationality, colour, parental or marital status, pregnancy, religious belief, social status, sexual orientation or political belief. Ashford Bowling Club will ensure that everyone who wishes has an equal opportunity to participate in the sport at all levels and in all roles.

PURPOSE:

It is the aim of Ashford Bowling Club to ensure that all employees/members, at present or in the future, are treated fairly and without discrimination or harassment, whether intentional or unintentional, direct or indirect. We will keep fully appraised of Bowls England guidance in respect of this.

LEGAL RESPONSIBILITIES:

The Law requires Ashford Bowling Club not to discriminate against its employees, members and volunteers and it recognises its legal obligation under the following legislation:

  • Sex Discrimination Acts, 1975, 1986 and 1999
  • Race Relations Act, 1976 (and amendment in 2000)
  • Equal Pay Act, 1970 and 1983
  • Human Rights Act, 1998
  • Disability Discrimination Act, 1995 and 2004
  • Disability Rights Commission Act, 1999
  • Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, 1974
  • The Children Act, 1998
  • The Employment Protection (Consolidation) Act, 1978
  • Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations, 2003
  • Employment Equality (Religion and Belief) Regulations, 2003
  • Gender Recognition Act, 2004
  • Civil Partnership Act, 2004
  • Employment Equality (Age) Regulations, 2006
  • Equality Act, 2007

DISCRIMINATION, HARASSMENT AND VICTIMISATION:

Discrimination can take the form of any of the following examples, but is not necessarily restricted to only those examples:

    • Direct Discrimination: Treating someone less favourably than you would treat others in the same circumstances on the grounds of their age, gender, disability, race, ethnic origin, nationality, colour, parental or marital status, pregnancy, religious belief, social status, sexual orientation or political belief.
    • Indirect Discrimination: This occurs when, for example, a job requirement or condition is applied equally to all, which has disproportionate and detrimental effects upon one sex or racial group because fewer of that group can comply with it and the requirement cannot be justified in relation to the job.
    • Harassment: Harassment can be described as inappropriate actions, behaviour, comments or physical contact that is objectionable or causes offence to the recipient. It may be, for example, of a sexual or racial nature or it may be directed towards people because of their age, their sexuality, a disability, or some other characteristic. Such behaviour is unacceptable and cannot be excused on the grounds that the harasser did not intend it.
    • Victimisation: Victimisation can be described as when one person is, for example, treated less favourably than others because he or she has taken action against Ashford Bowling Club under one of the relevant Acts/Regulations (previously outlined) or provided information about discrimination, harassment or inappropriate behaviour.

Ashford Bowling Club regards discrimination, harassment or victimisation as serious misconduct and any employee, volunteer or member who discriminates against, harasses or victimises any other person will be liable to appropriate disciplinary action.

IMPLEMENTATION: All Ashford Bowling Club recruitment and membership material shall include the equity policy statement. This policy document will be available to all employees, members, volunteers and officials. All employees, members, clubs, volunteers and officials have the responsibility to respect, act in accordance with and thereby support and promote the spirit and intentions of this policy.

Health and Safety

Bowls England is committed to achieving a positive and effective health and safety culture throughout the organisation. This document sets out our policy for protecting the health and safety of employees and others who may be affected by the way we conduct our activities and services.

The nature of Bowls England activities present many varied health and safety risks. It is essential therefore that we have effective health and safety management throughout the organisation. Our aim is to achieve a level of excellence in managing health and safety. It is our intention to ultimately eliminate all work related accidents, injuries and illnesses to any person or damage to property that may result from our activities. Unsafe events, whether they result in property damage or injuries, represent failures in control systems. All such instances will be investigated in order to improve controls and measure performance.

Bowls England through the Board of Directors, Main Council, Committees, County Associations, Clubs, managers, supervisors and all employees are encouraged to develop a culture, which promotes a safe and healthy working environment; by working together we can create a safer and healthier environment for ourselves and others.

In order to achieve our objectives we will:

      • Work on the principle that accidents, injuries, dangerous occurrences and ill health conditions can be prevented, and promote actively amongst all those associated with Bowls England, the high standards of health and safety consciousness, discipline and individual accountability that this principle demands.
      • Recognise the vital importance of the continued commitment of all to the highest standards of health and safety, and ensure that they have the necessary skills and support to achieve this through:
        • Information
        • Instruction
        • Training
      • Actively promote participation and co-operation in establishing and maintaining measures to improve health and safety at all levels of the Association.
      • Ensure through systematic risk assessment programmes, that risks associated with the Bowls England activities are identified and then eliminated, reduced or adequately controlled.
      • Provide adequate finance and resources to successfully achieve our aims.
      • Recognise that an effective health and safety culture and management system will benefit Bowls England, reducing financial and resource losses.
      • Require that any company contracted to work for Bowls England applies health and safety standards that are fully consistent with our own.

Bowls England recognises that for this policy to be effective, the management of health and safety must be fully integrated into and treated with at least equal status to any other area of our work. Before making decisions at Board, Council and Committee level we will consider any health and safety implications associated with our actions.

The Chief Executive of Bowls England is appointed as adviser in relation to health and safety, to ensure that Members are informed of any health and safety ramifications of any decisions and keep the Company apprised of relevant changes to best practice and legislation.

In addition to providing technical advice to Bowls England, the Chief Executive must ensure that an annual report is produced on the overall safety performance of the Company, from which the Board of Directors will develop targets and objectives for the following year.

Ashford Bowling Club has a Health & Safety Policy that is annually reviewed and amended, where appropriate.

Insurance and Indemnification

Ashford Bowling Club has Civil Liability Insurance Cover.

It must be noted that all volunteers, whether paid or not must be trained to a standard whereby they understand the requirements of the job, e.g. kitchen staff must be trained in food hygiene, green-keepers must have attended green-keeping courses and of course all volunteers must be familiar with Health and Safety requirements.

A person, when trained, becomes a ‘professional’ in the loosest sense of the term, e.g. an ECBS Level 1 coach can be classed as a ‘professional.’

      • Public Liability: – Where a third party (e.g. spectator or guest) suffers a bodily injury (e.g. bowl flies over the bank when firing) or property damage (e.g. premises owner gets equipment damaged by player).
      • Products Liability: – Where products sold or supplied cause injury (e.g. food sold or provided at an after-match meal at an event gives someone food poisoning).
      • Professional Indemnity: – Provides insurance against a ‘professional’ who is deemed to have a greater duty of care based on their skills/training giving bad advice or instruction to another, which causes the other person injury (e.g. a coach overtraining a pupil).
      • Libel & Slander: – Where speaking or writing too freely can be dangerous and a third party suffers defamation of character – (peoples’ opinion of them has been lowered) as a result – e.g. writing that someone is on drugs and the allegations were proven false. Any magazine, newsletter, website or e-mail could contain comments to this effect.
      • Directors and Officers Liability: – Under this cover indemnity is provided to the decision makers of the Association/Club/Committee against their personal liabilities.
        It is essential that every Club / County / Association has an Indemnity Clause written into their Constitution. Without this, Committee members could be held personally responsible for negligent committee decisions, therefore putting their own assets at risk.
        NB: In their capacity as an Officer, members have certain responsibilities and must not be negligent in the execution of those duties – e.g. not adhering to Health and Safety guidelines when preparing food – the Insurer could argue that H & S guidelines were not followed.
      • Member to Member Liability: – This includes Player to Player liability, should one member suffer an injury and sue another member for causing it. A spectator suing a member would come under Public Liability providing negligence occurred and was proven.
      • Employers Liability: – Where a club, etc employs someone, whether they receive payment or not, it is law to have Employers Liability insurance. There is no doubt that many volunteers’ fall into this category, e.g. Secretary, Treasurer, Green-keeper, Bar Manager, etc. To safeguard these ‘volunteers’ Employers Liability insurance is included, as standard and all volunteers must have had the necessary training.
      • Non-Criminal Liability: – means matters not covered by a court of criminal jurisdiction.
      • Property Owners Liability: – where a club, etc leases its property, including the green, to an outside body e.g. a wedding or a fun-day on the green for the WI. It is recommended that a formal document be drawn up to lease the Club / Green out. The lessee could be responsible for their guests.
      • Claims Made: – The Civil Liability insurance is written on a ‘claims made’ basis, e.g. the policy in force at the time that the Claim is reported will respond. This means that members have full ‘retro-active’ cover giving them protection for unknown incidents that may have occurred in the past.
      • Scope of Cover: – The Member will be covered for all bowling activities recognised by Bowls England, for their Club, County, Associations, Leagues, Tournaments and Bowls England, as well as social events organised for the benefit of the club and its members.
      • Limit of Cover: – Counties, Associations, Leagues and Tournaments will not require additional insurance unless the League or Tournament is ‘open’ whereby non-affiliated bowlers may play and when separate insurance cover will be required.
      • Registering of Members: – Insurance Companies need to know who they are insuring and this is no different from members obtaining Car Insurance, Life Insurance, etc. Other sports bodies register their members and at a time of increasing litigation, the Sport of Bowls has to do this also.

Misconduct, Suspension and Exclusion of Members

DISCIPLINARY REGULATIONS

  1. The right of Bowls England to take disciplinary measures
    1. Any member of Bowls England against whom an allegation of misconduct, as defined below, is alleged may be subject to disciplinary measures.
      The essence of misconduct under these regulations is:
      a) Improper interference with the functioning or activities of Bowls England or of any members of Bowls England.
      b) Action which otherwise improperly damages Bowls England or its reputation.
  2. Particular definitions
    For the purposes of this Regulation, the definition of ‘misconduct’ shall include, but shall not be restricted to:

    1. breach of Bowls England Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults Policy
    2. be guilty of any breach of the Rules and Regulations or of the Laws of Bowls England;
    3. be guilty of any conduct which is prejudicial to the interests of Bowls England or the sport of bowls
    4. have failed or refused for a period of one calendar month to pay any fine lawfully imposed by any competent authority under the jurisdiction of Bowls England;
    5. deliberately lose or attempt to lose any match or otherwise be guilty of unfair play;
    6. willfully alter a bowl after the same has been stamped by a World Bowls Board Licensed Bowls Tester, without submitting the same to such Tester for re-testing and re-stamping;
    7. at any function of Bowls England or of any County Association or Club thereof, or whilst upon the property of any Club, use any profane, indecent, or improper language;
    8. at any time or place be guilty of any violent, indecent, disorderly, threatening, intimidating or offensive behaviour towards Bowls England (this includes all (employees)), any County Association or any Club, or any member thereof, or any official appointed by such body, in respect of the carrying out of any functions or duties under the Laws of the Sport or the Rules and Regulations of Bowls England or of such County or Club as applicable
    9. Sexual, religious, disability or racial harassment of any member of Bowls England, Associate members or any members affiliated through their County
    10. any breach of Bowls England Equity Policy
    11. be guilty of drug abuse, otherwise known as ‘Anti doping’, in breach of the Anti Doping Policy Regulations of Bowls England;
    12. disregard, or refuse compliance with or act in contravention of any decision of Bowls England or its Directors or of any official of Bowls England;
    13. obstruct, disrupt or interfere improperly with the functions, duties or activities of any member or official or visitor of Bowls England;
    14. be guilty of any conduct which constitutes a criminal offence;
    15. commit any fraud, deceit, deception or dishonesty in relation to Bowls England or its members or visitors;
    16. behave fraudently or cheat at any event held by or connected with Bowls England;
    17. theft or misappropriation or misuse of property of Bowls England or of Clubs or County Associations or property of its Members;
    18. failure to comply with a reasonable instruction relating to bowling matters authorised by the board or the Rules and Regulations of Bowls England to make such instruction;
    19. the unauthorised use or misuse of premises of Bowls England or any club or county association
  3. Procedure following an allegation of misconduct at Club and County level
    In the event of an incident considered necessary for possible disciplinary action by a Club or County Association against one of its members, the following procedure recommended should be:

    1. The person or persons concerned must be advised, preferably in writing, that an issue is to be considered for possible action.
    2. In the event of a formal hearing taking place, the person or persons concerned must be given the right to be heard and to be accompanied by an advisor.
    3. The delegated committee appointed by the governing body of the Club or the County Association must be impartial and must hear all sides of the story. It should then adjourn and consider its decision. The decision must be given in writing as soon as possible after the hearing. A copy of the minutes of the hearing must be made available to all parties.
    4. In the event of disciplinary action being taken then the person or persons involved must be advised of their right of appeal to the County Association (in the case of disciplinary proceedings by the Club) or to Bowls England (in the case of disciplinary proceedings by the County Association) and a minimum stated period of 14 days given to lodge any such appeal.
  4. Appeals to County
    1. A member of Bowls England may appeal to the County Association who shall arrange for a hearing of such appeal to be held within twenty-eight days of receipt of written notice of appeal by the Secretary of the County. The appellant may appear and call evidence in support of the appeal if he so desires.
    2. If the appeal is dismissed, by the County Association, then the opportunity to appeal to Bowls England must be drawn to the appellant’s attention.
  5. Procedure for an appeal to Bowls England
    1. Establishing a prima facie case.
      Allegations of misconduct by all members of Bowls England under these regulations should be made in writing, in confidence to the Chief Executive of Bowls England at Bowls England Headquarters within twenty one days of the appeal. The Chief Executive will refer them to the Chairman of the Board. The Chairman of the Board will consider whether the available evidence supports a prima facie case of misconduct. In making this consideration, the Chairman of the Board should enquire if there is any additional written evidence in support of the case.
    2. Prima facie case not established.
      The Chairman of the Board may dismiss the complaint immediately if he or she believes that there is no case for the member to answer, or that it is for some other reason appropriate to do so.
    3. Case to answer.
      If the Chairman of the Board decides that there is a case to answer then he or she will refer it to the Disciplinary Committee under the procedures set out in section 6 of the Bowls England Rules & Regulations.

Appendix B

Notes on Membership and the Sex Discrimination Act

Does ‘open membership’ mean clubs can never refuse membership?

As a rule sport and recreation organisations have ‘open’ membership policies, whereby anyone who wishes to participate in a given sport and recreation, and is willing to abide by necessary rules and codes of conduct, is able to do so. Clubs can refuse membership, where they have good reason to believe that the applicant would be a disruptive influence or prejudice the good conduct of the club. But there must be no discrimination in such a decision.

Sex Discrimination Act

The Sex Discrimination Act 1975 (SDA) prohibits direct and indirect sex discrimination. Direct sex discrimination is less favourable treatment of a woman than a man (or vice versa) because of her sex. For example, the local football club refuses to allow women to play in the team. Indirect sex discrimination occurs when a condition or requirement is applied equally to both women and men but, in fact, it affects more women than men (or vice versa) and is not justifiable on objective ground unrelated to sex. There are some exceptions allowing sporting organisations to discriminate between the sexes, and exceptions in the SDA that may be relevant to your situation include:

Voluntary bodies

A voluntary body may use this exception in order to restrict membership to one sex and provide its services to those members. The voluntary body must be non-profit making, single sex and not set up under any laws. For example, men-only or women-only leagues or teams, and single-sex sporting clubs are often set up as single sex voluntary bodies and are therefore allowed to restrict membership to one sex. [S.34 SDA]

Serious embarrassment

Services may be restricted to one sex if the users are likely to suffer ‘ serious embarrassment’ at the presence of a member of the opposite sex or the users are likely to be in a state of undress. Where this is the reason for women only saunas and leisure facilities then this exception could apply. [S.35 (1) (c) SDA]

Physical contact

Facilities or services may be restricted to one sex if they involve physical contact between the participants where a member of one sex might reasonably object if the contact was with a person of the opposite sex. A self-defence class restricted to women only might rely on this exception. [S.35 (2) SDA]

General exception for sport

It is not unlawful in relation to any sport, game or other activity of a competitive nature where the physical strength, stamina or physique of the average woman puts her at a disadvantage to the average man, to confine competitors to one sex. For example, it would not be unlawful for the Football Association to refuse to allow women to play in the men’s football league. [S.44 SDA]

Private members’ clubs

Currently genuinely private members’ clubs are not covered by the SDA. A private members club is one, which operates genuine selection of members on personal grounds e.g. a new member must be proposed, seconded and accepted by the existing membership. Therefore they can be single sex or, if they admit both sexes, can have rules that disadvantage one sex.

Some clubs may think of themselves as ‘private’ but admit members freely – if so, they would not be considered a private members club and would be acting unlawfully if they treated men and women differently. Frequently, sporting clubs such as bowling clubs discriminate between the sexes by having different classes of membership for men and women – private members clubs are allowed to do this under the current law.

© ASHFORD (MIDDLESEX) BOWLING CLUB