Ron Grandison is hoping for more members to join the Mt Crosby Bowls Club. Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times
Ron Grandison is hoping for more members to join the Mt Crosby Bowls Club. Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times Rob Williams

Younger members needed to save Mt Crosby Bowls Club

A 60th birthday would be a milestone worth celebrating for any local sporting organisation, but the members of Mt Crosby Bowls Club will just be happy to get there unscathed.

Perched in picturesque surroundings just outside the border of Ipswich and Brisbane, the battling club has been fighting a losing battle with social change over the past couple of decades.

Once thriving with about 100 workers from the nearby water pumping station, the club's membership has shrunk as the demographics of the surrounding suburbs of Karana Downs, Karalee and Chuwar has changed.

As a result, at last check the club only had a dozen female players and two dozen male players.

Chairman Lyle Barlow said there was an ongoing battle with covering the costs of green-keeping and running the bar for the social events upon which the club's future depends.

"We are withering on the vine out here," Mr Barlow said.

"The players we've got are elderly and there's nobody young coming through. We've had a couple of good charity days but we haven't picked up any new members as a result.

"Now the position we find ourselves in is that we're thinking of selling our five poker machines to keep us going until the end of the year.

"The problem with that is that once we get to the Christmas party season, we would see a fair bit of money coming in from those pokies."

Member for the past 30 years, Don Grandison, was one of the many former pump station workers who made a habit of socialising at the bowls club.

"The bowls club was set up here because the road to Ipswich back in those days was rough, and this was a good watering hole for the pumping station workers," he said.

"What we really need now is younger members - the older ones are starting to get past it - but we know we are not alone with this problem."

With its mountain views and abundance of wildlife, the location of the Mt Crosby Bowls Club would be the envy of many, but it is also one of the things that has led to its struggles. Many of the area's newer residents are unaware of the club's existence, because it is not clearly visible by the road.

Club members have lobbied for clearer signage, but have struggled with the bureaucracy involved.

It's not all bad news for the club though with several big events on the calendar, including the 60th birthday celebrations scheduled for November 28.

There's also the semi-finals of the Snow Currie interclub competition at Mr Crosby on November 1. The club is at 770 Mt Crosby Rd, just past the corner store on the way to Brisbane.

The phone number is 3201 0140.



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