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Bowling Alleys

Old 20th Jul 2013, 20:05
  #21 (permalink)  
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Don't forget the various RAFG Kegelbahn. Many a good hour spent in the one at Gutersloh.
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Old 20th Jul 2013, 21:27
  #22 (permalink)  
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We had a 2 lane 10 pin bowling alley at Gaydon in 65. Great meeting place - expect it's gone now!
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Old 20th Jul 2013, 21:29
  #23 (permalink)  
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Reference Linton on Ouse. There was a reunion some twenty odd years ago which was attended by the veterans of a Canadian Halifax squadron that was based there during the war. After a few bevies their CO suggested a game of skittles.

No alley said the Groupie - up in the roof said the Canucks. They had built one in the roof during the war. None of us knew about it. It has now been opened up with a drop down ladder to look at it.
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Old 20th Jul 2013, 22:04
  #24 (permalink)  
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Was 2 I/C Lyneham lanes as a secondary duty. As Smuj says a great place for all ranks to have a drink.
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Old 20th Jul 2013, 22:18
  #25 (permalink)  
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I have many happy memories of Wittering Bowl.. not forgetting the Mally there of ourselves - and the Rugby club. Also, Leconfield.. that had a good bowling alley.

The best though, Greenham Common. Introduced to it 30 years ago this month.
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Old 20th Jul 2013, 22:36
  #26 (permalink)  
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Lyneham bowl....the place I was introduced to alcohol. Didn't drink till I joined up and reached my first posting at Lyneham. In those days, the entire shift would hit the bowl on swing shift. Out of the Wessex after tea straight into the Bowl. Work hard, play hard was certainly the ethos then. I think there was some throwing balls at wooden things but never took part myself as the bar was far more interesting.

Being propped up against the juke box as the soberest man tried to round up the shift and herd them back to the block.

Sending the juniorest lad to the NAAFI on bop nights with some money then when the bowl shut heading up the road to continue drinking the beers waiting for you.

and many other hazy memories...
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Old 20th Jul 2013, 22:54
  #27 (permalink)  
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Bowling Alleys

RAF Weeton, 8 SOTT, had one 1960ish, four lanes, my dad showed me round 'this American idea' while it was closed, (he was a civvi worker, out of bounds)

Last edited by Fishtailed; 20th Jul 2013 at 23:16.
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 04:34
  #28 (permalink)  
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Leuchars bowl was a strange place. Full of locals with odd wrist guards on high fiving each other.
It was the home turf of two particularly large sisters too!

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Old 21st Jul 2013, 06:50
  #29 (permalink)  
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Wildenrath Bowl was also a good place for an all ranks get together. I remember one night me and a mate went for a few games, ended up having quite a few Wobbly's and tried to play a whole game like the 'pro's'. We managed to swerve the ball quite well considering our state and scored more than we had the previous 'more sober' games! Never been able to repeat it since, the ball just heads straight to the gutter!

Last edited by im from uranus; 21st Jul 2013 at 07:03.
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 07:49
  #30 (permalink)  
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I remember some great all ranks gatherings in Cottesmore Bowl. IIRC it used to be a parachute packing shop before conversion to a 4 lane bowling alley. Honington was bowl-less but a quick drive up to Lakenheath was no problem followed by a few drinks in the NCO's Club.
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 08:07
  #31 (permalink)  
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There was a two lane bowling alley near the swimming pool and the Malcom Club in Muharraq in 68. No automatics, just locals to replace the pins! They were too quick to get hit!
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 08:14
  #32 (permalink)  
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Gib had a similar bowling alley - 2 lanes and 1 man to sort the pins out. He had to be quick to get back to safety by sitting on the dividing wall before the next ball was launched at him.
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 08:22
  #33 (permalink)  
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I never realised so many bases had them, considering that off station there were so few about, it surprised me.
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 08:35
  #34 (permalink)  
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Sadly NutLoose, another of those little items that make life good on a station that are slowly dying a death.
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 09:32
  #35 (permalink)  
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There was one at Brawdy. I went to it on ATC camp back in 1985. First time I'd ever had a chance to go ten-pin bowling. I'm not much better at it now.
This was not actually on the RAF camp, it was a USN facility for NAVFAC personnel, which was also open to the RAF and their families. I remember the Chili Dogs well....

Ah glorious Brawdy, the best station I ever had the fortune to serve on. Four years of working less than a third of each year, on Seakings that were actually less then a decade old then.The same airframes still going strong now I believe.

Cosford had a Bowling alley last time I was there, about 94 or so. Unfortunately it didn't exist when I did my trade training there, between 84 and 86.
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 09:46
  #36 (permalink)  
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The 4 lane one at Wyton in the 60's had a good bar as well, which was a godsend to a certain MB, who was banned from the pigs bar for some mischief concerning the cops
It also stayed open later than the Naafia
Regards, Den
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 17:08
  #37 (permalink)  
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Brize bowl still going strong with a large number of civvies (including me) making up the 4 nights a week league teams. Recently refurbished and employing a full time manager and staff who are not ex SNCO's or indeed RAF of any description.
Was very lucky in my time to have bowled at Brize, Witttering, Laarbruch Scampton and again at Brize. First picked up a ball at Jardines in Aylesbury and still have the cup we won in my "things I collected over 30 years" box.
Scampton Bowl was the preferred night shift watering hole before duty supper as the F/S down to the FLM's could all drink together or be kept an eye on.

AFAIK there are still full RAF championships, and there was a postal league with a legitimate way to spend Thursday afternoons improving your handicap as you were "representing the station".
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 17:41
  #38 (permalink)  
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There was a bowling alley at Fairford, courtesy of the USAF. Unfortunately when they quit the base HM Customs informed them that if they left it intact, even if it were for HM Forces, then previously waived import duty would be payable. So they didn't leave it intact...
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 18:16
  #39 (permalink)  
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One at RAF St Mawgan

There was a bowling alley for USN and Marines and UK personnel based at RAF St Mawgan at the married quarters patch at St Eval. It was next to the Westwings all ranks club. I know because I was the manager there after the manager that was running it got posted. There was a meeting each year to share the "profits" which was not a lot as the upkeep of the bowl was quite expensive, especially when you had to get the lanes resurfaced as they were made of wood that was dressed with oil on a daily basis, not like they are nowadays and are made of laminate.

Last edited by C4IONMYPC; 21st Jul 2013 at 18:17. Reason: spelling
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Old 21st Jul 2013, 18:28
  #40 (permalink)  
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Chuga, similar happened at Brize i think upon USAF departure, contents of furnished quarters were bulldozed in a pit as they would have reqd duty paying... How the Bowl survived I do not know..


Glad to see it still is going strong, no doubt the Civi element taking a major role in that and ensuring it is permanently busy.


Last edited by NutLoose; 21st Jul 2013 at 18:33.
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