Swindon Bats
Swindon Bats

Swindon Bats Sports & Social Club for Visually Impaired People

Tom Ferguson Memorial Competition 2017-18

Tom was a jolly Scotsman who could always put a smile on our faces. He enjoyed tenpin bowling and was very disappointed when he had to give it up in 2015. He was a very popular member of Swindon Bats.

The competition for 2017-18 is in full swing.

Click here for the competition rules and current league table

Tony Martin Bowling Challenge

This event took place on Thursday, 30 November 2017 when 6 teams comprising of members of the Zurich Community Trust, Capita and Open Works got together for a tenpin bowling competition in memory of Tony Martin.  Each team comprised 5 players from the above organisations plus one player from Swindon Bats. 

Players began to arrive at approximately 6.30pm meeting in the bar for a drink and a chat prior to the bowling commencing.  Once players had changed their shoes and chosen their balls, the fun began.

The first game was played with all our sighted friends being asked to wear simulation glasses of various eye conditions during frames 4, 5, 6 and 7.  It is always interesting that lots of spares and strikes are scored during these frames.

After the first game, there was a short interval so that players could obtain more drinks before game two began.  As with the first game, simulation glasses were worn for frames 4, 5, 6 and 7.  Some players were even brave enough to try wearing a blindfold simulating someone who sees nothing at all.  They also had a go at guiding a visually impaired bowler up to take their turn.

Once the bowling was over and scores collected and calculated, trophies were presented to the winning team as well as to the highest scoring male and female players.  The teams that took part were:

ZCT1:                     Siobhan, Jade, Franki, Rachel, Debbie.

ZCT 2:                    Lewis, Marie, Sarah, Jackie, Debbie.

ZCT3:                     Carla, Pam, David, Shannon, Mark.

OW:                       Lisa, Shaun, Catriona, Darren, Gemma.

CAPITA:                 Mandy, Dave, Maggie, Chloe, Vicki.

ZURICH/Mix:        Dave, Dan, Neil, Alex, Emily.

Bats:                      Georgia (ZCT1), Sue (ZCT2), Diana (ZCT3), Russ (OW), Glynn (Capita), and Jane (Zurich/Mix).


And the winners were!!

Team Competition


Highest Scoring Female


Highest Scoring Male



Well done to all the winners – let’s do it all again next year!

Click here for photos

Tenpin Match With Members of DNO Consulting & Thames Water

On Thursday, 19 October 2017 we welcomed employees of DNO Consulting and Thames Water to a match at Swindon Tenpin.  Four employees/spouses of DNOC and four from Thames Water got together to form a team against eight of our own members. 

Once we were all signed in and bowling shoes acquired, the fun began.  During frames 4, 5, 6 and 7, sighted players were asked to wear simulation glasses to give them some idea of what living with particular eye conditions is like. 

The first game ended with Swindon Bats winning by 2.5 games to 1.5.  On one lane the score ended even with Sue and Diana scoring 199 and Colin and Heather also scoring 199. 

There then followed a short break after which game 2 was played.  After much laughter, and lots of strikes and spares scored on both sides, the match ended with Swindon Bats winning by 5.5  to 2.5.  Well done to John who scored highest for DNOC/Thames Water and to Shaun for scoring highest for Swindon Bats.

Thank you to all who took part in this fun evening, with special thanks to Sharon, Mandy, Mark and Lee from Thames Water who agreed to play at short notice.

The teams were:

DNO Consulting/Thames Water: Colin, Heather, John, Susan, Sharon, Mandy, Mark and Lee.

Swindon Bats:    Tracey, Georgia, Glynn, Pete, Diana, Sue, Shaun and Russ.

Click here for photos

Memorial to Tony Martin

Some of our members paid their respects at the memorial service of a dear friend and supporter, Tony Martin, on Monday, 16 October at the Supermarine Sports & Social Club.  This service was an excellent memorial of Tony’s life as a son, brother, husband, father, grandfather, friend and supporter of many charities in the local area and beyond. 

Tony was carried into the service to one of his favourite songs – Always Look on the Bright Side of Life.  There were tributes given by family and friends and his favourite poems were read too.  Two hymns (Abide With Me and Jerusalem) were sung and a favourite Cold Play song was played giving some time for reflection.  At the end of the service, Tony was carried out to the theme tune of Doctor Who.  Close friends and family then went to a short service at the crematorium.

Tony and his team at Zurich Community Trust have been great supporters of Swindon Bats for many years – he will be very much missed by us all.

RIP Tony.

NBTBA Winter Trios Competition 2017-18

This competition has now started.   Click here for details.

Zurich Match – 7th September 2017

On Thursday evening, 7 September, we played the 3rd match of the year against friends of the Zurich Community Trust.  I have it on good authority that only one member of the Zurich team actually works for Zurich with 4 of their players being employed by Thames Water. 

As usual, the match began at 7 pm and the opposition used simulation glasses on frames 4, 5 6 and 7 of each game.  Neil and Pat managed to score strikes whilst wearing a blindfold- how did that happen?! 

After a lot of banter, and strikes and spares being scored on both sides, the match ended in a win for Zurich, 5 games to 3. 

Highest score for the Zurich team was 132 scored by Maggie.  Highest score for the Swindon Bats team was 139 scored by both Shaun and Stuart.  The teams were:

Zurich:  Nick, Harriet, Tracey, Morgan, Neil, Pat, Maggie and Vili

Bats:      Diana, Sue, Tracey, Andrea, Georgia, Glynn, Shaun and Stuart

Click here for photos

NBTBA Summer Doubles 2017

Summer is coming and the NBTBA Doubles competition has started.

  Click here for the full details

Sue Mead Wins National Singles Knock-Out Competition!

Congratulations to Sue who won her final game against David Evans of Morcambe 434 to 402.

Click here to see Sue receiving her trophy.


It's getting so crowded here that we have had to start an archive page.

Re-live highlights from our history!

Click here to visit the page.



A 'Useful Links' page has been added to our site.  Click here to visit the page.

Monday Club

The Monday Club meets once a fortnight for chat, a cuppa and fun and games. Dates for 2017 can be found on our activities page.



Free membership to the Registered Blind or Visually Impaired.


Sighted Volunteers Needed!


At present the club only has two sighted volunteers to help as Pin Spotters when we play tenpin bowling. Pin Spotters tell us what pins we have knocked down and which ones remain standing. They also help with finding balls and putting them away again. They may also be required to guide someone who does not see well enough to find their way around. If you are available for a few hours on Wednesday afternoons and would like to help and make new friends, please contact us.



Swindon Bats are just like you,
The only difference is what we view,
We’re men & women with different levels of sight,
Anything from an impairment to dark as night,
We often meet for coffee go on outings and trips,
Learn about new technology and share useful tips,
We have a wide range of ages from 18 to mature,
Using guide dog’s white canes to sticks and more,
But the best thing of all is we Tenpin Bowl every week,
In a national blind league True as we speak,
We’ve been National Champions more than once come 2nd and 3rd too,
We often win medals, and cups well we’ve won a few,
We bowl against local companies like Zurich and Nationwide,
Capita Lloyds Bank and others besides,
It’s all for fun to show how life still goes on,
Despite our disability when God’s mould went wrong,
So if life sometimes seems tough unfair and unkind,
Pick up a Bowling Ball as it works for the Blind.

Good Luck!

The Blind Poet

Simon B



Last Updated: 14th March 2018

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