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TIMELINE OF NATIONAL BAR BILLIARDS HISTORY - PART 1 - 1972 to 1991 (pre-BB Quarterly)

EARLY ORIGINS……….

Let's start off with some early history of the game. The concept of potting for points emanates from bagatelle, which was around in the 18th century.

www.mastersgames.com/cat/pub/bar-billiards.htm

Also, I've found these:

www.elham.co.uk/Elham/Business/Rose_Crown/Rose_Crown.htm

http://www.ourwelwyngardencity.org.uk/page_id__483.aspx?path=0p2p48p

So it will be seen that it has existed in its present form since the 1930s. It quickly caught on in pubs, and demand for tables was so high that they were manufactured in their thousands for hire operators based in Kent, Berkshire and up in Lancashire.  Leagues sprung up in Oxford, Reading, High Wycombe, Winchester, Canterbury, Wokingham, Andover and Wallingford.

Certain operators favoured certain table types - W.Jelks & Co of Holloway Rd, N.London supplied both the Kent- and Ascot (Berks)- based operators, whilst Rileys of Accrington (“who later merged with Burroughs and Watts to form Riley Burwat”) supplied the North of England - as well as the Channel Islands.

 In 1933 the game was first introduced in Jersey by a gentleman named George Jeune, a landlord, who important 4 tables over to the channel island. By 1964 this had grown to over 50 tables with competitions being organised by two organisations, the National Bar Billiards League and the Jersey License Victuallers League. By 1980 the two leagues had amalgamated and consisted of 21 teams and over 200 registered players.

In the late 1940s ex-football referee Ralph Tarratt introduced the game in Sussex (which has the most leagues by far of any county) and chose to deal with SAMS Bros of Hoddesdon (Herts) rather than Jelks. His first table was installed in the Wheatsheaf at Cuckfield and he set up his own hire operation (which still exists to this day) and had a reciprocal arrangement with B-B Ltd that they would keep to their own patches so as not to be in direct competition with each other. In other words, Tarratts would not seek to hire outside the county of Sussex.

Accordingly, the game in Sussex is played on standard-width SAMS tables, but at some stage (history not absolutely clear) it seems that SAMS Bros were commissioned to manufacture a batch of narrow (and slightly longer) tables for the 4-Pin version and it has since been speculated that this may have come about due to an error in ordering of a batch of Italian slates, with a decision made to manufacture tables to the alternative dimensions rather than to undergo the inconvenience of trying to reject the order.

In his book “Knight of the Whistle”  Ralph Tarratt endorses the claim that David Gill introduced the game here in 1930, after he saw it being played in Belgium, where it was popular in tea rooms and coffee houses, and was impressed by its potential to catch on in public houses. Breweries caught on quickly to the idea, especially as it only took up limited space, and were willing to pump money into the game's growth, sponsoring league trophies. Area representatives from the table suppliers would visit pubs and clubs demonstrating the new game: The idea was to give new players technical help, however before long many league players were outclassing the reps ! Ralph adds that  the first known score of 20k was made on 3rd Jan 1961 by 20-y-o Brian Hudson of Chatham (22,100 in 19 minutes).

Chris Saville writes:

“I have always adhered to the David Gill account of seeing Billiard Russe in Belgium and getting Jelkes of London to copy it in 1934:  However, I am now entirely unconvinced that Bar Billiards started in 1934 at the Rose & Crown at Elham in Kent - only Bar Billiards as we “wide table three pinners” like to think is the ‘Holy Grail.’ My supposition is that Snookerette tables or other pre 1934 tables already existed in East Anglia and the Fen district without the knowledge of our Kentish predecessor Mr Gill. (It still does in the Gedney Hill League, centred around The Wash).

There is evidence of early Padmore tables (suggested 1920's on Mercury Leisure site) that look decidedly French. If a supposed mistake was made in ordering a batch of slates it could well have been our wide tables that were wrong!!

What I do know from experience is that French Billard Russe slates (no 200 hole) are identical to the early narrow tables pre-dating narrow Sams. The Billard Russe table I refurbished from France even had the 200 hole marked out though not drilled.

And Sams only took out an English clock patent in 1950 presumably replacing the earlier Brevette clocks from France (another connection with France!)

But why was the 200 hole added in copying Billard Russe?, possibly because some bright spark at Jelkes had seen snookerette tables in East Anglia?

And why did Sams make both versions of the table, narrow and wide?  To me they can only have been copying both versions of the game and Sams Bros came from Hertfordshire, midway between the two enclaves.

Also, where does the term ‘snookerette’ fit into the equation? There was a company called Snookerette Ltd who were prosecuted for unlicenced public billiards in 1936.

They produced the narrow version of bar billiards tables (AKA narrow Sams). These were the same dimensions as the Belgian version which predates Bar Billiards as modern wide table were a copy of it. Googling suggests that Snookerette tables pre-date the tables we are familiar with.

(Sav finds a Californian dealer offering a snookerette from 1890 ! - Ed)

There is much confusion with Snookerette also being referred to as the pin game (31's) played on a snooker/pool table with pins corresponding to the snooker ball values, also carom.

Billard Russe is certainly a century or more old, it now appears possible that Snookerette may be of a similar age “

I'm inclined to agree with Chris, but have an inkling that there were also slightly smaller tables around pre-WW2 which were referred to as Russian Billiards. Probably without the clock and bar mechanism which is necessary for rental operation in public premises. I recall my grandfather had one, later destroyed when the house was bombed duing the blitz !

Simon Tinto, in his "History of the Redhill League 1948 - 1998" publication poses the question "How would the best players today have coped with imparting spin on the heavy ivory balls of the past as compared to the lighter cellulites of the present ? And judging from the scores that were common in the early days, it seems that bar billiards - even for the best players - was a game of gentle potting rather than the aggressive modern in-off style."

Be all that as it may, two amazing facts have emerged - one being that the original tables have proved to be so durable and to such a clever specification, that all attempts to produce modern variations of matching quality have more or less failed, with League play still taking place on tables which are now 70 + years old in 99% of all cases.

The second is that a mass export of Jelkes tables (mainly to America) took place in the 1980's and tables now exist in this country in their hundreds rather than their thousands. Rather perversely, no Leagues have been heard of as being formed in the U.S. so it appears that they all went into private homes on sole merit as smart pieces of furniture.

With the insurgence of the game of Pool into UK round about this time, hire firms struggled to find their business arrangements sustainable, and the price of a game kept going up accordingly......from sixpence to a shilling, to two shillings, then 50p and finally a pound. Pool hire seemed more viable when you consider a game between two good players could be over in a couple of minutes, whereas bar billiards is for a constant duration of between 15 and 20 minutes when the bar drops.

Alternative methods of hire to the traditional one of "profit share" were tried, with landlords being charged a 'flat rent' by the month - with the obvious disadvantage that the table would need to have constant use in order to pay its way, and indeed, justify its retention - sometimes difficult in this day and age with the whole pub industry itself under threat due to various factors - which others may be willing to elaborate on.

 The only traditional hire firm remaining is the one based in Sussex (= Tarratt Tables), with the other main source of supply being the pub chain owners themselves, who have built up their own stocks of tables - sometimes of inferior quality !    

This apparent shortage of tables of the quality needed to sustain League play leaves any prospective new venue with a dilemma - often solved by the landlord investing in his own table, acquired privately via the medium of eBay.             –Clive Thompson, October 2014

NATIONAL COMPETITIONS - THE EARLY YEARS………………

1972

The 1st ever Mens County Championship Final was played and Sussex won with runners-up from north of the Thames unknown. This was a North v South challenge organised by the NBBA of table operators.

Simon Tinto, in his publication A History of Redhill & Dist Bar Billiards League 1948-1998, written to mark his League’s Golden Jubilee, recalls:

“The Southern Counties Championship began in 1969 as a triangular competition between three counties - Surrey Sussex and Hampshire. Kent joined the Association in 1972 and for the next three years the competition was held on a home-and-away basis. The Surrey team had changed to accommodate some rising young stars, but the old guard were still as good as ever: I remember going to Winchester to support them in about 1973 and being astonished when Arthur Jeffrey recovered from a deficit of over 6000 to win his game….. In 1975 the Southern Counties format changed to a one-day tournament played at a large pub in Southampton.” 

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An early press cutting showing the Sussex team from 1969 which took part in the Southern Counties Championship.

1973

The 2nd Mens County Championships were played and Sussex win with runners-up unknown. Sussex also win the 1st ever Ladies inter-county with runners-up from north of the Thames unknown.

The 1st ever NBBA Team Championships were played at Horsham, Sussex.  Inaugural winners are the Mayflower, High Wycombe; the Lord Napier from Oxford are runners-up.

Pete Ewins recalls:

Looking through my old files i came across a 1 page programme called the Watney Straight Eight Challenge Cup--Oxfordshire Final:  The teams in this final were Bell Headington A-- names were Pete Ewins (yes its me) Dave Jones Pete Slater John Drinkwater Graham Hensby Tony Wood and we lost 3-2 to then the mighty Lord Napier, Their team was Pete Wells Ron Webber Pete Kitchen Alan Sales Ivan Roberts Roy Longford. Quote:

“This is the first sponsored Bar Billiard competition of its type ever to be played. It is being played this year on a County basis with 8 Counties taking part:- Oxon, Sussex, Kent. Surrey, Hampshire, Berkshire, Bucks and Herts. The winners from this match go forward to the finals at Horsham.”

Charlie Gildersleve, long-standing Secretary of the High Wycombe League, had this recollection in 2001 of the first North v South Competition, and the formation of the All-England Bar Billiards Association:

“In 1970, Arthur Wenham of Bar Billiards Ltd said that it was about time that the North of the Thames counties met the various associations of the South, so a meeting was arranged at the Hammer and Tonges, Basingstoke in the Autumn of that year.

Charlie Gildersleve and the late, great Norrie Lambert represented Bucks, and there were two from Reading and two from Oxford present also.

Southern Counties dominated the Committee in the early years….. Charlie remembers that he made a suggestion at the first meeting but it was not included in the minutes when they were read the following year: when he challenged this , the Chairman said that "If it isn't in the minutes you couldn't have said it." So the North were given the impression that they had no impact.

Progress was made, however at the instigation of the first Team Championships in 1973: Sponsored by Watneys and staged at Horsham, it was won by Charlie's team, the Mayflower (High Wycombe) who beat a top Oxford side in the Final. The Hall was still very full at the presentation at 11pm as Watneys gave every player on the day a pack of 24 cans of light ale.

The divide between North and South was such that, when Norrie became Chairman, he and Peter Pannell (Surrey) should alternate for the position every year and this went on for several years. The meetings dragged on as agreement on any issue was hard work, In 1979, Horrie Wood was Secretary and worked together with Norrie to draw up a set of rules and get them accepted.

On two occasions, once at the Royal Earlswood Hospital (Redhill) and once at the Fox and Hounds (Reading), the meetings had to be terminated at midnight without reaching "Any Other Business" - but there was much improvement when Ken Hussey was voted in as Secretary in 1981. He did a wonderful job in modernising the Association, and in his last year the meetings were moved from Saturday nights to Sunday lunchtimes. Suddenly they were more civilised.

Eric Hill took over from Ken and continued the fine work to bring us up to our current (2001) committee of Keith Lewendon (Chairman), Dave Barnes (Secretary), Keith MacDonald (Treasurer) and Peter Farrelly (Tournament Director). We must also thank Phil Hawkins for his support and constructive criticism.

Over the years, meetings have been held at Basingstoke, the Royal Earlswood Hospital, the Jolly Sailor (Ripley), the Stoke Hotel (Guildford), the RBL Club (Normandy), the Fox & Hounds (Caversham), the Dashwood Arms (Picklington), the Blue Flag (Cadmore End), the RAFA Club (High Wycombe), the Skinners Arms (High Wycombe), the Millers Arms (Caversham) and the Clifton Arms (Caversham).”

TV coverage in the form of Yorkshire TV’s Indoor League………

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The Indoor League ( courtesy of Nigel Senior’s  Newsletter No. 25)

“Bar Billiards’ biggest appearance on TV was on the Indoor League presented by the late Fred Trueman in the 1970’s  Pub games were featured, from darts, shove ha’penny, bar skittles, cheese skittles, arm wrestling, table football, American pool and bar billiards.

There are 2 DVDs available which features some of the episodes of the Indoor League, and are quite an eye opener for players who play the game today:  In Volume 1, one section featured the final between Taffy John (the Pontefract school headmaster and reigning Yorkshire television champion) and Malcolm Rider. Taffy took the spoils 2820 – 1450 and one of his breaks of 420 was described as ‘magnificent’ – how times have changed !

Volume 2 shows the 1973/74 indoor league season. John Baker (cueing in picture) from Tunbridge Wells is shown playing against Taffy in an early match. John knocks out the champion with a final ball down the 200. It seems here that the games are 10 minutes long, and players are limited to 45-second breaks. John makes his way to the final beating Jim Hornibrooke also from Kent. In the final, John plays Peter Wells from Oxon. John makes a 490 break at the end to win the final by a score of 2400-1440  Fred interviews John afterwards and has a double take when John says his highest break is 15,000 ! A cracking couple of DVDs and a great chance to have a nostalgic look at our game”

1974

The 1st ever All-England Ladies Championship was staged, with Vivien Bacon of Hertfordshire the winner and Hampshire’s Chris Cole runner-up.

The 3rd Mens County Championships were played and Sussex win with Berkshire runners-up. Kent win the 2nd Ladies with runners-up unknown.

The 2nd NBBA Team Championships were played at Southsea:  Winners are the North Star, Durrington, Worthing..runners-up unknown.

1973/74 Press clipping:

“The Sussex bar billiards team, which includes several local players, has won the All-England bar billiards championship for the third successive occasion: It is a record that is unlikely to be repeated as the game becomes increasingly competitive. Between 300 and 350 people watched the national body’s president, Southwater’s Ralph Tarratt, present the trophy to non-playing captain Mick Foskett, who also lives locally. And just to make the occasion complete, a Sussex team from the North Star, Durrington won the national team cup competition. Sussex, the south’s representative, beat Berkshire, who represented the north, 4-3, so it was by no means a walkover. In fact, Sussex were without the services of Portslade’s Steve Page who, due to a misunderstanding, went to Selsey instead of Southsea, where the competition was held on the pier. Mike Foskett stepped in, but, plainly unprepared, went down 2500-6880 pts. Sussex made a good start in the final of the competition, in which the representatives of 14 counties took part, when Partridge Green’s Rod Tarratt swept his opponent aside 9810 to 1700, but then Mike Foskett lost his game. John Thayre of Alfold put the county back on course with a 10,530-500 success, Mike Hinton of Upper Beeding consolidated with 6340-3730, and Reg Mehr of Portslade made it 4-1 with 8640-0 as Sussex made sure of victory. Berkshire showed they were not finished, however, by taking the final two games as Peter Thayre of Alfold (500-11580) and Mike Ingram of Portslade (5730-6510) went down. In the Team competition mentioned earlier, a total of 500 or more pubs had taken part.”

1975

The 1st ever All-England Mens Individuals were played at  the Lakers Hotel, Horley (Redhill).  Mike Hinton of Sussex wins the Men’s Championship from Roy Buckle of Bucks.  Chris Cole is the 2nd Ladies champ, with runner-up unknown.

The 4th County Championships were played and Sussex win with runners-up unknown.. Sussex also win the 3rd Ladies with runners-up unknown.

The 3rd NBBA Team Championships were played:  Winners are the New Inn, Baughurst (Hants), R-u unknown.

Further TV coverage in the form of Yorkshire TV’s Indoor League………a match featured shows Redhill's Jon Peters beating Tunbridge Wells's John Baker in an exciting (1975) final by 4200-3050.

1976

The 2nd All-England Individuals (Mens and Ladies) were held:  Stan Pratt of Kent  is Mens Champion from Gerry Lambert of Bucks. Chris Cole is the 3rd Ladies champ, with runner-up unknown.

The 5th County Championship final was played at Northampton and Sussex win with Northants runners-up. Hampshire Ladies win the 4th, runners-up unknown.

The 4th NBBA Team Championships were played at the Billing Aquadrome in Northampton:  Winners are the Flying Scud, Redhill (Surrey) and runners-up the White Harte, Cuckfield (Sussex)

1975/76 Press clipping

“All-England Bar Billiards Association chairman Ralph Tarratt, who lives in Southwater, had the pleasure of presenting the All-England Cup to the Sussex team at Northampton on Saturday. It was the second successive occasion that the County side, of which Mr Tarratt's son Rod is a member, had won the cup. This time they took it handsomely by beating Northants 5-2. The other members of the team, in addition to non-playing captain Mike Foskett, were John and Peter Thayre (Alfold) Mervyn Watkinson (Cranleigh), Steve Page (Portslade), Mike Hinton (Upper Beeding) and Richard Marshall (Horsham). To add to their pleasure, fellow county player Tim Peacock captained his White Harte, Cuckfield team through to the final of the All-England team cup. They were finally beaten by Surrey after knocking out favourites Kent 3-2 in a semifinal.”

Dave Constable recollects:

“In 1976 the Flying Scud teams merged to play in the All-England Team Championship. We beat the Blue Anchor 5-0 to win the Surrey final and, under the captaincy of Geoff Jukes, travelled to Billing Aquadrome in Northants for the Finals. What a day ! It started with the discovery that a pint cost only 20 pence. This wasn’t a red rag to a bull - more a case of a Redhill to the bar ! A few beers wouldn’t hurt…….

We began against the Duke of York (Watford) and won 4-1, but not without controversy: Rod Smith called a foul on Viv Shepherd when she moved the ball off the ‘D’ as she was addressing it. As it happens, Rod was right, but we only needed three games so we made the semi-finals easily.

Our opponents were the Eagle (Berkshire) but we were 0-2 down after Pete Jeffrey and John Samuels lost. Geoff stopped the rot, winning by 2000 and I also won, leaving John Stenning to play the decider. It was a close game and with the bar due it could have gone either way when John’s opponent hit a ball off the top cushion and back into the black peg.

Pete had a bad case of nerves, so Dave Richardson played the Final against the White Harte (Sussex). John Samuels got us off to a great start, but I pegged a winning break in the second leg. Geoff then put us ahead and John Stenning, hero of the day, won easily and the celebrations began….As well as the Champions’ Shield and individual cups we were given two cases of beer and two bottles of champers. A bottle of scotch from landlord Ken Howland was the icing on the cake. Some journey home !”

1977

Yet further TV coverage in the form of Yorkshire TV’s Indoor League………

This scoresheet for the 1977 competition has been provided courtesy of Dave May:

“Round 1. Roy Buckle (Bucks) 1800, Jon Peters (Surrey) 3710; Gerry Lambert (Bucks) 4260, Tony Mayfield 3460; Alan Sales (Oxon) 2440, Alan Ignatowski (Berks) 2720; Tony Sculley (Oxon) 4240, Rod Tarratt (Sus) 2700; Lawrence Brown 3950, Stan Pratt (Kent) 4150; Charlie Hastie (Berks) 4550, Mick Samwell (Nthnts) 2470; John Thayre (Sus) 2220, Brian Paul (Nthnts) 3660; Christine Cole (Hants) 1880, Viv Shepherd (Herts) 3440

Round 2. Jon Peters 2260, Gerry Lambert 2340; Alan Ignatowski 1710, Tony Sculley 1940; Stan Pratt 3920, Charlie Hastie 3760; Brian Paul 4240, Viv Shepherd 3920

Semi-Finals. Gerry Lambert 3890, Tony Sculley 0; Stan Pratt 2440, Brian Paul 1660.

Final. Gerry Lambert (Bucks) 2180, Stan Pratt (Kent) 3890. “

The 3rd All-England Individuals were played:  Nigel Rosier of Berks wins the Men’s Championship from Hertfordshire’s Ernie Jordan.  Vivien Shepherd (nee Bacon) wins the 4th Ladies title,  runner-up unknown.

The 6th County Championships were played and winners and runners-up both unknown.  Sussex win the 5th Ladies with runners-up unknown.

The 5th NBBA Team Championships were played at Southsea:  Winners are the North Star Durrington (Worthing); The Sportsmans Rest from Hampshire are runners-up.

Mark James recollects:

“I know, from having had conversations with Ian Lelliott in the past, that the engraving on the perpetual trophy contains some mistakes regarding which team won in which year.

Ian recalls his team, the North Star, winning this event when it was held in Portsmouth in Jubilee year 1977 (in a venue on a pier, I think he said), yet there is a different team shown for 1977, and Ian's team (wrongly named as Durrington S.C.) appear for 1974 I think.

Anyone who knows Ian will be certain, as I am, that his recollection of this will be correct, rather than what's written on the trophy. I suspect that at some point in the distant past retrospective engraving of the trophy was required, hence the information contained thereon is to be treated with circumspection.

My own personal first memory of this tournament is of attending, as a spectator, the finals at a club in Horsham. I would have thought it was 1980 but for tommo's post above, so if not it must have been 1981. The Sussex representatives (North Star again I think) travelled up from Worthing by coach, with a handful of supporters aboard, including myself and Tony Lewis.

Reggie Bosanquet was the guest of honour that day, I recall him being able to stand up only by being supported by the (not one but) two glamorous girls he had brought with him!

I have seen the programme from that day, and I'm as sure as I can be that KT was a member of one of the competing teams, but that's about as much as I can recall.”

3rd/4th Dec 1977: A Horsham touring side visits the Isle of Wight and four matches are played: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xbRJ3tjgqyDroR0KJ3T3R_15UIkca2PJ9ckg2br7_8U/pub

1978

The 7th County Championships were played at Tonbridge and Bucks win with runners-up unknown. Sussex Ladies win the 6th, Surrey are runners-up.

1977/78 press clipping:

Sussex Ladies retained the Joy Tarratt bar billiards trophy with a magnificent display against Kent, Surrey and Hampshire at Tonbridge on Saturday (29th April 1978 ). They lost only five of their 24 games, and skipper Lyn Draper (Three Bees) contributed towards the victory with a fine hat-trick attaining scores of 4320, 3780 and 6000 in her matches. Another Horsham player, Jackie Spooner (Six Bells) having lost her first match against Surrey then produced scores of 6020 and 6220 to convincingly beat her Hampshire and Kent opponents. This 1978 inter-county championship produced some of the best scores ever recorded in ladies bar billiards and the highest, 7560, came from Sussex rookie Sheila Pinner from Worthing. Final placings: 1.Sussex 19pts, 2. Surrey 12pts, 3 Hampshire 9pts and 4 Kent 8pts.”

 

The 6th NBBA Team Championships were played:  Winners are Temple Farm WMC Strood (Kent), no other details available.

The 4th All-England Individuals (Mens and Ladies) were held at Redhill:  Bernie McCluskey of Berks is Mens Champion from Colin Smith of Sussex. John Wilsher of Northants is Third.  Viv Shepherd is the (5th) Ladies champ again,  Sussex’s Jackie Spooner is runner-up.

1978/79 Press clipping:

“Jackie Spooner of the Six Bells (Billingshurst) team, the current Sussex and Horsham champion, was runner-up in the All-England individual ladies championship at Redhill on Sunday. For the second year running the event was won by Viv Shepherd of Hertfordshire,but it was Jackie who produced the highest score of the evening by clocking up over 7000 in her third game. The All-England bar billiards championships may come to Horsham again in October 1979. Sussex compete in the same section as Surrey, Bucks and Northants and have their playoff in Surrey in September when the other section, containing Oxon, Kent, Herts, Berks and Hants play their games in Oxford.”

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 1979

In January 1979, John Stevens of the Ampthill Hotel, Freemantle, Southampton, created a new world record for a break in bar billiards. Stevens sank a staggering 24,350 points while playing a Southampton League match against Portswood Hotel. it shattered the old record (- corroborated by the Southern Daily Echo))

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3rd Tarratt Tables Champion-of-Pub-Champions Competition (1979) Finals held at Roffey SSC. Wnr: Colin Smith (Brighton); R-u: Bob Bungard (Green Man, Partridge Green). Competition now sponsored by Bass Charrington and an estimated 3,000 players from all over Sussex took part! (1st Competition  had been held in 1977 with  Finals held at Horsham YMCA FC. Wnr: David Cragg (Mid Sussex); R-u: Jeff Lewington (Littlehampton))

The 5th All-England Individuals were played:  Ron Josey of Berks wins the Men’s Championship from opponent unknown.  In the 6th Ladies’ Vivien Shepherd beats Ann Richards of Sussex for the title.

The 8th County Championship final was played at the Sunallon Club, Horsham and Kent win with Bucks runners-up. Sussex win the 7th Ladies with Herts runners-up.

1979/80 press clipping:

“Horsham bar billiards players Lyn Draper (captain) and Jackie Spooner were among the winners for Sussex in their 5-2 win over Hertfordshire that brought them the All-England title at the Sunallon Club (Horsham) on Saturday. The three other successes were scored by Erica Malley, Sheila Pinner and Ann Richards, all from the Worthing League. The tournament was the biggest of its kind ever held in this country, with 100 games played in 9 and a half hours on five tables. Finalists in the other two competitions were Kent and Buckinghamshire. Kent gained revenge in the mens inter-counties final when they beat their rivals by the odd game in seven with the last game as the decider. Reginald Bosanquet, the ITN newscaster and All-England Bar Billiards Association patron, presented the trophies. Sussex County president, Ralph Tarratt, thanked all concerned with the event, and made a special presentation to Sunallon’s Charles Cordery for his staging of the Finals.”

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The 7th NBBA Team Championships were played at Horsham:  Winners are Searles Club A, High Wycombe. Anchor and Hope, Maidstone are runners-up.

1979/80 press clipping:

“Sussex were beaten into second place by Buckinghamshire in the All-England Bar Billiards Association intercounties zonal final, at the Royal Earlswood Hospital, Redhill on April 13. They had an excellent 7-0 victory over Surrey in the first round, but slipped badly in the second and third rounds to win only six out of a further 14 games. Sussex Captain Doug Page was the only Sussex player to win all three games, while John Thayre, Colin Smith, Steve Page and Mike Ingram won two each. Also in the squad were John Slee (Horsham), Bill Phillips (Billingshurst), Dave Lewes (Brighton) and Roger Taylor (Littlehampton). Bucks now meet Kent in the grand final of the competition at the Sunallon Club, Horsham on October 28 when club championship prizes will be presented by a director of sponsors Aidelle Products, and other awards will be handed over by newsreader Reginald Bosanquet. Main event of the day will be the All-England club team championship between teams from nine counties (Sussex, Surrey, Hants and Kent plus Berks, Bucks, Herts, Northants and Oxfordshire). Sussex will be represented by the North Star (Durrington) who beat another Worthing team, Old House At Home, 3-2.”

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1980

The 6th All-England Individuals (Mens and 7th Ladies) were held:  Hertfordshire’s Kevin Tunstall is Mens Champion from Keith Akers of Berks.  Vivien Shepherd is the Ladies champ, runner-up is Sue Bewsey of Bucks.

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4th Tarratt Tables Champion-of-Pub-Champions Competition (1980) Finals held at Roffey SSC on 24th May 1980: Wnr: Mick Holmwood (Green Dragon, Horsham); R-u: Tommy Walters (Brighton). Tarratts put up £1,000 to sponsor the event, with a first prize again of £300.  The competition was to run for two more years with the 5th Competition (1981/82) Finals held at the Inland Revenue SC, Worthing.Wnr: Bob Bungard (Rustington); R-u: John Slee (Bell A, Horsham). 3rd: Gary Ridley (Lancing); 4th: Johnny Cutler (Littlehampton). Furthest Lady: Ros Rees (Crown, Newick). By the time of the 6th Competition (1982/83) the competition had morphed into the NBBA Singles, a competition run jointly by the four main table operators in the UK. "Off-the-Spot" Rules were introduced to allow players competitive practice for taking on Jersey ! Tarratts sponsored the southern heats and First Prize, won by Chris Ellmers of Mid Sussex, was an all-expenses paid trip to Jersey for the BIOC in November.

The 9th County Championships were played at Byfleet and Bucks win with Hants runners-up. Sussex Ladies win the 8th to make it four in a row, runners-up were Kent.

1980/81 press clippings:

“Horsham’s Sarah Beales, Lyn Draper and Linda Turvey are in the Sussex team to play at Portsmouth in Grp 2 of the AEBBA ladies inter-counties competition on Saturday Oct 18 (1980). Brighton’s Jean Over is also in the team, along with Erica Holt, Jan Ingram, acting-captain Sheila Pinner and Ann Richards of Worthing”

.……..and…..

“Three Horsham ladies helped Sussex into the Final of the AEBBA championships on Saturday: Lyn Draper, Linda Turvey and Sarah Beales (reserve) were in the Sussex team that beat Northamptonshire and Hampshire at Portsmouth. With Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire having withdrawn, it was a straight three-way battle. Lyn and Linda both won in the 7-0 defeat of Northants, but Hampshire were successful by the same margin and so there had to be a playoff. Lyn won her game, and after six legs the score was 3-all. Then Gina Sherratt of the Brighton league defeated her Hampshire opponent 6350-860 to take the match. The Final is at the British Aerospace Sports Club, Byfleet, on Sunday November 16 (1980). Scores (Sussex v Northants) E.Holt 2360, J.Rooney 1060; A.Richards 3770, P.Inglesby 480; J.Ingram 2390, C.Penney 1120; S.Pinner 8060, C.Lett 140; J.Over 3150, K.Stiff 750; L.Draper 4670. T.Bailey 420; L.Turvey 2370, S.Jolley 1160. (Northants v Hants) J.Rooney 530, J.Garrard 4150; P.Inglesby 1020, C.Hiatt 2250; C.Penny 1280, J.Tovey 2610; C.Lett 620, D.Firth 1990; K.Stiff 790, A.Haiselden 3080; T.Bailey 1010, C.Cole 4060; S.Jolley 430, J.Waters 1250. (Hants v Sussex) J.Garrard, A.Richards 1890; W.Watkins 1760, E.Holt 2660; J.Tovey 1440, S.Pinner 4520; J.Mannell 3710, J.Ingram 2780; A.Haiselden 2340, L.Draper 2620; C.Cole 3630, J.Over 3240; B.Hiatt 860, G.Sherratt 6350.

……..and………

“The Sussex bar billiards team had only limited success in the AEBBA inter-counties (Grp 2) championship at Roffey on Sunday. The team of seven won two and lost two matches and finished third overall with 14pts – behind Hampshire (17pts) and Cambridgeshire (15.5pts). Sussex’s match results were: Northants 2, Sussex 5 (J.Dobson, T.Owen, J.Slee, J.Sullivan, J.Thayre); Sussex 4, Herts 3 (J.Dobson, T.Owen, J.Slee, J.Thayre); Cambridge 5, Sussex 2 (J.Sullivan, S.Thomas); Sussex 3, Hants 4 (J.Dobson, T.Owen, S.Thomas)”

……and…...

“Although the mens team were knocked out of the inter-counties, the Sussex ladies team will be at Byfleet on Saturday with Horsham league players Lyn Draper and Linda Turvey in the side. Horsham’s Doris Cordery is the non-playing team captain, and the rest of the side is: Jean Over and Gina Sheratt (Brighton) and Jan Ingram, Erica Holt, Sheila Pinner and Ann Richards (Worthing).”

….and…….

“Sussex Ladies made a fighting recovery after losing the first game – by beating Kent 4-3 to take the Ladies inter-counties title for the fourth successive year. In the Final, Sussex lost the first leg, but hit back to make it 3-1. It was then Kent’s turn to come back and make it 2-3, but when Sheila Pinner opened up with a break of nearly 6000, victory for Sussex was on its way. Scores for final (Kent ladies first): S.Moon 3410, Jan Ingram 1510; J.Craddock 900, Gina Sherratt 7430; H.Foster 2870, Lyn Draper 4970; M.Joyce 2330, Jean Over 4270; P.Marsh 3300, Erica Holt 470; K.Sampson 1360, Sheila Pinner 8650; K.Hendley 4260, Ann Richards 2650. On Saturday 29th Nov, Maresfield’s Mandy Harris will represent the county in the All-England ladies singles championship.”

 

The 8th NBBA Team Championships were played at Byfleet:  Winners are Mucky Duck, Rudgwick (Sussex), runners-up are the British Queen, Portsmouth.

1980/81 press clippings:

“03 Oct 1980 It’s smiles all round as Mucky Duck, Tismans Common landlord Bernard Hill and wife Linda show off the trophies the pub team received after winning the Sussex final of the AEBBA team championship on Monday. The Mucky Duck played the County Club, Littlehampton, at the Moonraker, Crawley, and narrowly won 3-2. The team of (l to r) Tony Franks, John Thayre, Pete McNamara, Colin Peskett (capt.), John Slee and Peter Thayre were all-square at 2-2, but the Mucky Duck skipper then beat his opposite number. This has put the side into the national final at Byfleet on Sunday November 16, when 11 other teams from all over the country compete for the £350 first prize and trophy. Match scores for Mucky Duck v County Club: P.McNamara lost to Chris Noakes 1720-3020; John Thayre beat A.Stempien 7220-520; John Slee beat D.Simmonds 2950-1590; Tony Franks lost to Ron Bruton 2010-2110; Colin Peskett beat Norman Luxford 3120-2100.”

muckyduck.jpg

……and……..

“Mucky Duck, Tisman’s Common bar billiards team may be representing Sussex twice in the space of a week: On Sunday they will be competing for the team section in the finals of the AEBBA’s team and inter-counties championships at Byfleet. Mucky Duck are grouped with Suffolk and Herts in the first round, and the winners go into the semi-final. On the following Saturday (Nov 22) the pub team have been asked to represent the county in the Southern counties inter-county team championships at Tunbridge Wells.”

……and…….

“The Mucky Duck, Tismans Common, Rudgwick, are the All-England bar billiards team champions: They beat the Hampshire side, the British Queen, 3-2 in the final at Byfleet on Sunday after disposing of Kent’s Dolphin team 4-1 in a semi-final. They had earlier defeated the Swan Inn, Suffolk 4-1 and the Old Shepherd outfit from Hertfordshire by the same margin in the play-offs. And tomorrow they will have the chance of doing the double when they represent Sussex in the Southern Counties Bar Billiards Association team championship at Tunbridge Wells. On Sunday, recordings of interviews with players will be heard on Tony Lewis’s Sport on Four programme at 8.10am.

In the AEBBA final, the local team lost the opening game in both semi-final and the final after playing throughout the competition from 1.15pm to 10pm. But Pete McNamara and John Slee both won all the four games they played. Peter Thayre, who took over for Colin Peskett after the opening game, won his first two games but was well beaten in his third after his team had already won the competition. Scores for the Final (Hampshire names first): A.Crow 12,530, John Thayre 860; G.Haiselden 790, Pete McNamara 10,760; N.Harding 3660, John Slee 7840; B.Charlton 1320, Tony Franks 8300; K.Crane 6460, Peter Thayre 830.”

….and…..

“The Mucky Duck, Tismans Common, march on. On Saturday, representing Sussex, they added the Southern Counties title to the All-England championship they won the previous week. Tony Franks was the star of the side at Tunbridge Wells. He won all three of his games to finish with the impressive average of more than 9000 points a game. Each of the four counties taking part – Hants, Kent, Surrey and Sussex – played each other once. Mucky Duck made a good start by winning the first match against Surrey 4-1 after Tony had won the opening game on the last ball. Teammates John Thayre, John Slee, Pete McNamara and Peter Thayre were also on form and, in their next match with Kent – it was expected to be a close-fought contest – the Sussex side won easily 4-1. At this stage, Mucky Duck were in a very sound position, but if the strong Kent side could beat Surrey 5-0 it meant that Sussex would need to defeat Hampshire 3-2 to clinch the championship. Surrey did the Sussex lads a favour, though, by taking the first two games and so Mucky Duck needed only one game to share the title and two to win. Hampshire proved tough opposition, but Sussex took their two games to finish outright winners with ten points. Hants and Kent had eight points each and Surrey finished with four.”

1981

The 7th All-England Individuals - including Finals - were played at Osberton Radiators SC, Oxford in April 1981:Mens Indivs Group A: Berks, Cambs, Herts, Oxon, Kent. Group B: Bucks, Hants, Northants, Surrey, Sussex. Ken Foster (Kent) wins the Men’s Championship from Alan Stevens (Bucks)  

Guinness Book of Records entry:  31st May 1981: At "The Magpie", Goring-on-Thames, Berkshire, a Bar Billiards score of 1,363,870 was achieved by a team of five players, in a 24 hour marathon.

Ladies County Group A held at Salfords P.O.Club, Horley on 26/09/81. Teams: Berks, Bucks, Kent, Surrey, (Cambs).

 Mens County Group A held at Histon FC, Cambs on 18th Oct: Teams: Cambs, Hants, Herts, Northants, Sussex.

Press clipping:

“The Sussex team, including Tony Franks and John Thayre of the Mucky Duck; Steve Merriott of the Five Oaks, and Roger Taylor (Bridge, Upper Beeding) are through to the final of the All-England Bar Billiards Championship. They did so by winning their group of the inter-county championships at Histon FC, Cambridge on Sunday 18th October. (The finals for which will take place at the British Aerospace Social Club, Weybridge on Sunday, November 22). They opened well by eliminating the holders, Hampshire, 5-2 in their first game, and then went on to beat Cambridge 6-1, Northants 4-3 and Hertfordshire 6-1. Franks and Thayre won all their matches in a remarkable team display, inspired by non-playing captain Colin Peskett. Tony and John are expected to be members of the Mucky Duck team competing for the final’s £1000 prize against Park Crescent, Brighton in the All-England team competition at Ashington Social Club.”         

Mens County Group B held at Searle Rec.Club H/Wycombe on 31st Oct: Teams: Bucks, Berks, Kent, Oxon, Surrey.

Ladies County Group B held at Osberton Radiators SC, Oxford on 8th November: Teams: Hants, Northants, Oxon, Sussex, (Herts).

Press clipping:

“Horsham’s Lyn Draper showed few signs of nerves as she won her match to give Sussex a 5-2 win over Hampshire – and a place in the All-England Inter-counties bar billiards final for the fifth year running. Sussex were one of four teams in the group play-off at Oxford on Sunday against Hampshire, Northants and Oxfordshire (Herts having withdrawn). Sussex skipper Doris Cordery had to settle for a 4-3 win over Northants, and they notched up the same score over Oxford. At this stage Hampshire led with 11 points to Sussex’s 8. After six games Sussex were 4-2 ahead and had to win the last game to reach the Final. The Hampshire girl lost her opening break of 1500, and Lyn Draper coasted home 2550-1390. Horsham’s Linda Turvey won all three games for Sussex and so did Brighton’s Jean Over. Sussex scores were (Sussex’s first): (v Northants) J.Over 2280, C.Lett 550; L.Draper 890, S.Jolley 1700; S.Sampson 870, P.Ibbotson 2560; M.Harris 3590, C.Penney 900; L.Turvey 2150, J.Roche 1090; A.Richards 1390, J.Smith 1630; G.Sherratt 3030, J.Harrison 0. (v.Oxon) A.Richards 2910, J.Brown 3160; G.Sherratt 2310, D.Godfrey 1590; M.Harris 840, C.Cooke 4840; L.Turvey 2440, A.Rust 1320; L.Draper 2680, M.Higham 4980; S.Sampson 4240, P.Withey 2710; J.Over 3280, R.Bolton 2050. (v Hants) S.Sampson 4260, A.Haisleden 1480; J.Over 2420, J.Tovey 2310; M.Harris 2490, C.Hiatt 2870; A.Richards 2670, C.Briscoe 2060; G.Sherratt 2190, J.Mannell 3140; L.Turvey 1660, J.Garrard 1130; L.Draper 2550, D.Firth 1390.”

Team Finals (County and Off-the-spot only) were held at British Aerospace SC, Byfleet on Sunday 22th November 1981: Sussex men coasted home to win the 10th County Championship 5-2 against Berkshire but the ladies lost the 9th Ladies, a title they had held for the past four years to Berkshire 3-4   Press clipping:

It was an outstanding win for Sussex, under non-playing captain Colin Peskett: After Brighton’s Colin Smith had taken the first game 7900-7210, and Horsham’s Tony Franks the second 5700-5450, Jeff Dobson of Brighton compiled an outstanding break of 9910 to which his opponent replied by playing out remainder of the table for 4410. Billingshurst’s John Thayre then won 9300-3200 and John Sullivan (Portslade) 7410 before Worthing’s Roger Taylor went down 3650-8890 and Terry Race of Brighton by 2510-7210.”

Roger Taylor recalls:

“I remember John Sullivan very well (a great player, very fast for his era), especially when winning the County All England finals at the British Aerospace Social Club, Byfleet, Surrey 5 - 2 against Berkshire, on Sunday 22nd November 1981 -and not a split shot in sight by Sussex!!!”

The 9th NBBA Team Championships were also played at Weybridge:  The Crown and Thistle win for Oxon, and a Bucks team  are runners-up.

1985team.jpg

The Crown and Thistle team together with the magnificent winners’ trophies…

(left.to.right: Dave Plumstead, Pete Slater, Keith Sheard, Clive Wallin and Pete Higham (capt.)

Press clipping

“The Mucky Duck team from Tismans Common were unable to recapture the form that gave them the team championship last year, and went down in the group won by Oxfordshire, the new title-holders.”

Ladies Indivs Group A B & C (including Finals) held at Searle Recreation Club H/Wycombe on 28th November 1981: Group A: Kent, Berks, Oxon; Group B: Surrey, Herts, Bucks; Group C: Hants, Sussex, Northants.  Vivien Shepherd beats Jill Josey of Berks for the (8th) Ladies title.

History is made with the 1st British Isles Open at the Inn on the Park, St Helier, Jersey:  Local man Harry Siddall is the first-ever winner, with Oxford’s Derek Payne runner-up. Jersey’s Tim Douglas is 3rd and Sussex’s Jim Millward 4th. Quarter-finalists are Tony Williams, Guernsey’s Terry Kenny and Graham Bisson and D.Makin (both Jersey).

This report from Nigel Bisson on the Jersey Bar Billiards website:

“It was at a Jersey Bar Billiards League committee meeting at the Esplanade Hotel in 1980 that Don Cadec, then the league’s Tables Manager, first raised the suggestion that Bar Billiards should have its own national championship.

 

It would be fair to say that, at that time, he was not sure how this could be arranged or organised, but his enthusiasm overcame what was, initially, a sceptical response and a ‘task force’ of League Secretary Tony Tagg and Assistant Secretary Nigel Bisson began to look into the practicalities.

 

Tagg set about canvassing and probably coercing commercial interest and he managed to obtain promises of major support from travel firm Travtel International and air carrier British Caledonian Airways. To their eternal credit both businesses bought into an idea that was, to say the least, embryonic and they were both instrumental in helping to gain additional support from Jersey Tourism.

 

The potential involvement of Travtel also led to the securing of the events first (and probably best) venue – The Inn on the Park. An early inspection by both men, and the taking of a few measurements, suggested that 12 match tables could be accommodated. The layout was such that the tables were set out around a low level cabaret/dance floor, with raised seating and access areas around the sides which provided vital access to the bar areas. A permanent stage provided a trophy display and presentation area and the whole thing was overlooked by a tiered first floor balcony which occupied three of the four sides.

 

Without electronic help Tony Tagg set about devising a 12 table format and timetable for the competition which, with adjustment, was still being used over 20 years later. Quite how he did it remains a mystery.

 

Bisson’s task was to look at the ‘nuts and bolts’ of arranging and running a full weekend of competition and included the drafting of things like scorecards, display sheets and graphics. Not the least of the practical problems was the fact that most of the tables required were in use in pubs around the island and a charm offensive was needed to get all of the parties involved on side and buying into the idea.

 

The logistics of getting the tables to the venue were placed firmly in Cadec’s court. Given the trouble he had caused it was the least he could do! An amazingly small, but amazingly willing team were put in place and for the first few years the transportation of tables to and from the Inn on the Park involved 1 van and a 7 day cycle!

 

So it was that in November the very first ‘British Isles Open’ took place with just under 200 players taking part. Pre event publicity in those early days amounted to postal shots being sent out around the country to a list of leagues, pubs and individuals provided by the All England Bar Billiards Association, hence the choice of name for the tournament.

 

Support snowballed in the early years with the number of entries increasing year upon year. This, of course, brought its own problems in respect of organisation and execution, but it is testament to the thoroughness of the initial framework that very few major changes in the format were needed. Entry numbers peaked in the late 80’s when a scarcely believable 409 players entered. Those who remember it will testify to the fact that it really was a marathon rather than a sprint, both on and off the tables!

 

Subsequently, improved communication, including the utilisation of the new fangled Internet sent the competition global and enquiries and interest arrived from near and far. Unfortunately, whilst this did not translate into a spate of overseas players arriving it did underline that bar billiards is known about and played in some format or another in all sorts of places.

 

In 2000 the event was retitled as the Bar Billiards World Championship. A new graphic was produced and both competition titles were patented and registered by the Jersey Bar Billiards League. At the time the local BBC asked why Bar Billiards merited a World Championship and the answer was ‘Why Not?’ Whilst the tournament has always been the one to win, it is a fact that very few people get to call themselves a World Champion and who would deny that those at the very top of the game don’t deserve such recognition.

 

The current economic climate, from which Bar Billiards is not insulated, together with a reduction in the number of registered players, has led to a drop in the number of entrants. In recent years the level of support has stabilised somewhat and a regular entry of around 200 is usual.

 

The smaller number of players has allowed a more comprehensive playing format to be used, which includes ‘round robin’ early stages. This together with the adoption of a Plate Competition, a World Pairs Championship and a Junior World Championship has certainly made the event more inclusive in respect of how many games are played by those taking part.

 

Changes in the way people organise their travel mean that the original main sponsors are no longer involved. The current organisers have had to move with the times and have had to solicit support and sponsorship from new sources. This is not easy, especially at the moment, and the tournament has had to become, by necessity, more self financing to as large a degree as possible.

 

The format and execution of the event is now computerised which has led to a more efficient and streamlined organisational exercise. Luckily, as the old guard has slipped away some more ‘technically’ gifted people have taken up the mantle and have ensured the competition thrives into the present day.  

 

This does raise the question of how on earth they managed in the ‘old days’. I won’t give any secrets away, but I can tell those of you who ‘go back a ways’ that things did not always go as smoothly as it might have looked!”

 1982

The inaugural International between England and Jersey took place at the Berkeley Hotel,  Southampton, England on 27th February 1982. The first England team picked was Alan Ignatowski (Berks), Bernie McClusky (Berks), Ron Josey (Berks), Ray Hussey (Bucks), Alan Stevens (Bucks), Ken Foster (Kent), Brian Wood (Kent), Peter Highstead (Kent), Kevin Tunstall (Oxon), Tony Franks (Sussex) & Jeff Dobson (Sussex). Tony Burrows (Hants) & Simon Tinto (Surrey) were the reserves. Colin Peskett was the non playing captain from Sussex. England ran out 8-3 winners.

AEBBA Mens Indivs Groups A & B held at  P.O Club, Tunbridge Wells on 29/06/82. Group A: Sussex, Lincs, Hants, Surrey, Cambs, Kent; Group B: Northants, Oxon, Berks, Bucks, Herts.

AEBBA Ladies Indivs Group A & B also held at P.O Club, Tunbridge Wells on 29/06/82.

Group A: Bucks, Berks, Sussex, Oxon, Hants; Group B: Kent, Northants, Herts, Surrey

Ladies County Group A held at Inland Revenue SC, Worthing on 11/09/82. Teams: Sussex, Berks, Hants, Bucks, (Northants). (Winners: Sussex)

Press clipping:

Horsham Bar Billiards League’s Lyn Draper, Jackie Spooner and Linda Turvey are members of the Sussex squad competing in Group A of the All-England ladies inter-counties competition at Worthing. The winners of the contest, in which teams from Berkshire, Hampshire and Buckinghamshire are also taking part, meet the winners of the B group in the final at Weybridge in November. Doris Cordery is the Sussex non-playing captain, and the other members of the squad are Jean Over and Gina Sherratt (Brighton), Mandy Harris and Ros Rees (Lewes), Bernie O’Prey (Mid Sussex) and Danielle Silver (Worthing)”

Results from the day after Bucks withdrew………..Sussex 4, Hampshire 3 (R.Rees 2180, D.Firth 2320; J.Over 4210, J.Mannell 3120; G.Sherratt 3230, J.Tovey 4620; M.Harris 2050, J.Garrard 1770; B.O’Prey 2390, J.Waters 330; L.Draper 1910, P.Collins 1740; J.Spooner 2540, S.Harding 3330.) Berkshire 3, Sussex 4 (L.Jeffery 2300, R.Rees 3470; P.Burdett 4170, J.Over 1380; J.Josey 4220, G.Sherratt 2770; J.Aldridge 2270, M.Harris 3820; S.Young 2030, B.O’Prey 2230; M.Bennett 2920, L.Turvey 3830; J.Meek 2180, D.Silver 800.) Hampshire 3, Berkshire 4 (D.Firth 6720, L.Jeffery 1360; J.Mannell 1710, P.Burdett 5820; J.Tovey 1190, J.Josey 6430; J.Garrard 2260, J.Aldridge 1160; C.Hiatt 1960, S.Young 3150; P.Collins 0, M.Bennett 7070; S.Harding 4690, J.Meek 1170). Sussex 4pts, Berkshire 2pts, Hampshire 0pts.

Mens County Group B held at Searle Recreation Club H/Wycombe on 18/09/82. Teams: Kent, Bucks, Surrey, Berks, Lincs. (Winners: Kent)

Ladies County Group B held at Bournal Boys Club, Bushey, Herts on 10/10/82. Teams: Herts, Oxon, Kent, Surrey. (Winners: Oxon)

Mens County Group A held at Osberton Radiators SC, Oxford on 17/10/82. Teams: Hants, Cambs, Oxon, Sussex, Northants, Herts. (Winners: Sussex)

Press clipping

“White Hart A from Cranleigh are well on the way to becoming the most successful bar billiards side in the area as they prepare for the All-England finals at Byfleet next month. The team won the Worthing League’s Summer Cup competition and then the players, several of whom also make up the Alfold Social Club side, were beaten finalists in the Horsham Festival Cup and reached the final of the Billingshurst League’s Jubilee Cup. On Saturday, because they won the Surrey zone of the All-England competition, they represented the county in the Southern Counties section and won that too. On the way they beat past holders of the All-England title, the Mucky Duck of Sussex. The three who play in both the White Hart and Alfold sides are Tony Hawkes, Trevor Wheeler and Tony Lewis. Other players include Harold Peacock, Peter Barnett, Chris Stevens, Richard Parsons and Nigel Chandler.”

Grand Finals (County, Indivs and Nat.Team) held at British Aerospace SC, Byfleet on 21/11/82.

The All-England Individuals (8th Mens and 9th Ladies) were held at Byfleet:  Terry Isard of Herts is Mens Champion from Paul Sainsbury of Kent.  Herts’ Vivien Shepherd is the Ladies champ for the sixth year in succession, runner-up is Jill Josey of Berks.

The County Championship finals were played at Byfleet and Kent win the 11th Mens with Sussex runners-up. Oxfordshire win the 10th Ladies, with Sussex runners-up again.

Press clipping

““The women did better than the men in the final of their competition which they tied 3.5-all with Oxford. But as one of the Oxford players made a very high score, the Oxon aggregate was greater than Sussex’s and so they had to be content with being runners-up for the second year running.

Oxon 3.5, Sussex 3.5: R.Bolton 2810, M.Harris 3120; M.Higham 2430, G.Sherratt 2600; P.Withey 3150, R.Rees 3150; C.Cooke 6930, L.Draper 1790; J.Hawkeswood 2130, J.Over 4170; D.Godfrey 3580, A.Richards 2790; A.Rust 2700, L.Turvey 1780. (Oxon win on aggregate 23730 - 19400)”

The 10th NBBA Team Championships were played at Byfleet:  The Bush, Blackbird and Thrush of Maidstone win, runners-up are the White Hart, Cranleigh (Surrey)

Press clipping:

“In years to come, Sussex bar billiards players will remember November 1982 and say: this was our darkest month…….For then the AEBBA Inter-counties 7-a-side Finals were held, together with the National Bar Billiards Association’s team (5-a-side) championship – and the county slumped in both. In the mens inter-counties competition, the Sussex team, which has a fairly impressive record in this competition over recent years, was beaten five games to two by a strong Kent side. Sussex’s winners were Tony Franks (Bell, Horsham) and John Thayre (Alfold Club). Representing Sussex in the team championship were, for the third year running, the Mucky Duck from Tisman’s Common: Two good results in the opening series of matches put them into the semi-final where they met the Kent representatives from the Bush,Blackbird & Thrush (Maidstone). And the Duck team suffered their worst defeat for some time when they were beaten 0-5. Also playing in the team championship were the White Hart, Cranleigh representing Surrey, and they reached the final where they too lost to the team from Maidstone.”

 

The 2nd British Isles Open is held at  the Inn on the Park, St Helier, Jersey in November, and the quarterfinals comprise seven Jerseymen and solitary mainlander Vivien Shepherd of Bucks. Graham Bisson is Champion with Clarrie Queree the runner-up. Brendan Fogarty is 3rd and Tim Douglas 4th. Vivien Shepherd, Peter Noel, Gordon Johnson and Dennis Helleur complete the quarter-final lineup.

 1983

The 2nd International took place in Jersey at Chateau Plaisir, St Ouen on 12th February 1983: Home advantage again proved crucial as Jersey won a close match 6-5. This year saw the first ladies’ international - won by England 3-2.

The 1st  British Open Pairs held at the Lansdowne Hotel, Eastbourne on 11/12/13 March 1983: Winners are Roy Buckle and Kent Murray, the runners-up are Colin Neville and Tim Drake.

9th All-England Mens Individuals were held at Molins, Saunderton, H/Wycombe on 19/06/83:

Group A: Sussex, Cambs, Bucks, Herts, Surrey; Group B: Jersey, Hants, Wilts, Berks, Northants; Group C: Kent, S.Yorks, Oxon, Lincs.

Sussex’s Tony Franks wins the Men’s AEBBA from Oxon’s Kevin Tunstall; Northants’Pete Farrelly is third.  

press clipping:

“Tony Franks wins All-England Championship……Bell Inn, Horsham’s Tony Franks, the county’s 1981/82 champion, was in sparkling form to win the mens’ All-England Bar Billiards Association’s individual knockout competition at High Wycombe on 19th June: After a minor hiccup in the first game when he picked up only three points out of five, he went on to win his three remaining games of the first series to head the group with 18 points. In his last match of the series, he played out the table in the first game with a score of 15,010 and won the second game, finishing with an aggregate score of 25,440. He then joined the winners of the other two groups to playoff for the championship, and sailed through this competition winning all four games played in two matches to become champion.”

Tony Franks (far right) with some of his Bell A Horsham League winning teammates of 1982/83

The trophy haul includes the AEBBA Singles, Southern Counties and Sussex Singles, all won by Tony.

10th AEBBA Ladies Individuals also held at Molins, Saunderton, H/Wycombe on 19/06/83:

Group A: Sussex; Cambs; Oxon; Lincs; Group B: Bucks, Surrey, Northants, Berks; Group C: Herts, S.Yorks, Kent, Hants.

press clipping:

“Jean Over from the Albion Inn, Brighton, made it a Sussex double when she beat Jill Josey of Berks for the Ladies title.”

Mens County Group B held at Oxford United FC SC, Oxford on 18/09/83:

Teams: Oxon, Lincs, Kent, S.Yorks.   Winners: Oxon

Ladies County Group B held at Searle Recreation Club, H/Wycombe on 25/09/83:

Teams: Bucks, Kent, Oxon, Hants. Qualifiers:: Kent and Oxon

Ladies County Group A held at Thames Conservation Club, Reading on 01/10/83:

Teams: Sussex, Berks, Surrey, Northants, Herts. Qualifiers: Sussex and Surrey

press clipping:

“A theoretically weak Sussex ladies Bar Billiards side came up trumps in a four-county play-off to reach the last four in the AEBBA’s inter-county competition. Missing four regulars, and drafting in the non-playing captain Doris Cordery (Horsham league), Sussex gained 17 points to tie with Surrey – but went through on a vastly-superior scoring average. The outstanding performance came from Ros Rees (Lewes league) who won all her four games. The rest of the team was Margaret Coble (Billingshurst League),Gina Sherratt (Brighton), “Bernie” O’Prey (Mid Sussex), Jean Over (Brighton) and Jackie Spooner (Horsham). They now go on to the final at the Emma Hotel, Maidstone, in Kent on Sunday, October 30. The men’s team will play their group play-off on Saturday, October 15 at the Royal Earlswood Hospital Club, Redhill.”

Mens County Group C held at Rushden WMC, Northants on 09/10/83:

Teams: Northants, Wilts, Hants, Bucks.  Winners: Bucks

Mens County Group A held at Royal Earlswood Hospital SC, Redhill on 15/10/83:

Teams: Surrey, Sussex, Herts, Berks, Cambs.   Winners: Sussex

press clipping:

“A Sussex bar billiards team, aided by the talents of Horsham’s Tony Franks and John Slee, have won through to the final of the AEBBA Mens’ Championship. John Slee won a vital final frame to ensure a one-point victory overall. The other zones were won by Bucks and Oxon, with the three-way final scheduled for Sunday, Oct 30 at the Emma Hotel, Maidstone.”

Grand Finals (County, Indivs only) held at Emma Hotel, Maidstone on 30/10/83:

The 12th County Championships were played at the Emma Hotel, Maidstone and Oxon win with Bucks runners-up and Sussex 3rd.  Kent win the 11th Ladies from Sussex.

press clipping from 1983/84:

“The final stages of the AEBBA’s Inter-counties competitions were held at Maidstone on Sunday -with Sussex represented in both the ladies and mens competitions. With the men’s team finishing third in their three-team play-off it was left to the ladies to earn some glory for Sussex….Their first match in the semi-final of the competition was against the reigning champions, Oxfordshire, and they fully avenged their narrow defeat in last year’s final, beating them by five games to two. In the final, Sussex’s ladies played Kent, who had disposed of Surrey in their semi-final. This match turned out to be an absorbing thriller, with the spectators getting more excited and noisier as each of the two teams fought to establish mastery over the other. But neither was successful until the final game, as after each of the three pairs of games, they were level at 1-1, 2-2 and 3-3.  When the players went to the table for the final and deciding frame, the tension was tremendous, with spectators cheering first for one player, then for the other ! Whilst this encouragement was welcome, it did tend to increase the pressure on the players and the Sussex player appeared to be more affected by it than her opponent, who went on to win after a tremendous tussle to give her team victory by four games to three. Outstanding performance of the day was from Horsham’s Jackie Spooner. Playing in the final of the ladies competition, she made a personal best-ever score of 9040, which included a break of 6300, winning for herself a trophy for the highest break of the day.”

The 11th NBBA Team Championships were played at British Aerospace SC, Byfleet on 20/11/83:  The Hourglass (High Wycombe) win for Bucks, the Falcon of Berks are runners-up and the Blue Anchor (Portsmouth) are third.

Pete Ewins recollects:

“The All England Team Championship Finals Sunday 20th Nov 1983 at British Aerospace Club.  Do you remember the teams?......

Group 1....Blue Anchor Portsmouth...  Sportsman Chorleywood...  Woodbridge Inn North Newton...  Lord Nelson Morton.

Group 2  Prince Regent Great Shelford...Welsh Harp Sturry?...Quarry Gate Oxford (I was in the team)...Falcon Tadley.

Group 3   Bold Dragon Weston Favell...Hour Glass High Wycombe...Ham Worthing..Royal Oak Redhill.                  Pete”

Roger Taylor recollects:

“Hi, I remember the Ham being in the All-England finals, I did not play for them at the time as I was still playing for the Gardeners, but I do remember (as I went along to support them) the team was : Peter O`Brien, Sheila Pinner, Peter Rourke, John Symington and Dave Flavin.

They did not do very well as I remember but the drinking session was good.”

1st National Off-the-Spot singles is staged (also at Byfleet on 20/11/83):  The Winner is Peter Rich of Cambridge, who beat Dave Millard of Worthing, Sussex in the final.

3rd British Isles Open at the Inn on the Park,St Helier in November is won by Tim Ringsdore of Jersey;  Micky Daw, also of Jersey, is runner-up. Sussex’s Tony Franks is 3rd and Jersey’s Harry Barbet 4th…….local players Tommy Tobin, Roy Syvret and Graham Le Beuvant and  Sussex’s Colin Merriott complete the quarter-final lineup.

Clive Thompson recalls:

“An enduring memory was in a very early BIOC at Jersey. Englanders were still coming to terms with the off-the-spot game and were very much second best. Tony Franks was the first one to really crack it, got to the Semi-Final, lost, but won a play-off for third place. In this match he played the clock out doing three down, one up in front of the hole and both down (double-barrel) for 14k, and received a standing ovation which must have lasted all of five minutes !”

 1984

The 10th All-England Individuals (Mens and11th  Ladies) were held:  Bernie McCluskey  is Mens Champion from Brian Wood of Kent.  Ray Hussey of Bucks is third. Chris Stilwell (nee Cole)  of Hants is the Ladies champ, runner-up is Sheila Pinner of Sussex.

The 13th County Championships were played and Berks win with Sussex runners-up.  In the 12th Ladies final stage at Worthing, Sussex won with Oxon runners-up..

Press clipping

“Fine performances from Horsham players secured the Sussex  bar billiards team’s passage into the All-England Inter-counties competition final recently. At High Wycombe, the men’s team, playing in a group of three counties in a playoff, won both matches they played. They beat Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire by five games to two. Horsham’s John Slee was in fine form with scors of 13810 and 12760, and Tony Franks and Terry Race (Brighton) each recorded scores of over 10,000. At the final stage of the women’s equivalent competition at Worthing, Sussex beat Oxfordshire 4-3 and whitewashed Hampshire. The team then beat Surrey 6-1. They won the event, with Jackie Spooner victorious in all three games.”

 The 12th NBBA Team Championships were played:  Alfold Social Club win for Sussex, with Hants and/or Bucks 2nd and 3rd.

Three press clippings from 1984/85:

 “Alfold SC emulated Mucky Duck in winning All-England title:  Alfold Social Club narrowly beat the Gardeners Arms (Sompting) 3-2 to win the Sussex area final of the All-England Bar Billiards championships on Monday. Both teams included two players from the current county squad (John Slee and Tony Franks for Alfold, and Roger Taylor and Charlie Preston for Gardeners). Match  fortunes swayed back and forth with Gardeners taking a 2-0 lead but with Alfold pulling back and then winning the final game. Scores (Alfold first): John Slee 3700, Charlie Preston 7400; John Thayre 700, Bob Bungard 10,200; Tony Franks 10,500, Roger Taylor 2000; Peter Thayre 4050, Mike Hinton 3740; Trevor Wheeler 5400, Dave Millard 3800.”

………and……….

Alfold SC took the National Bar Billiards All-England team championship with victory from John Thayre ensuring victory in the final game. Alfold were represented by John and Peter Thayre, Trevor Wheeler, Tony Hawkes, John Slee and Tony Franks in this 12-team tournament. The Sussex side were in the group against Surrey, Wilts and Herts. They beat Wilts 5-0 but lost 2-3 to Herts and, in a tense final match, qualified for the later stages with a 4-1 win over Surrey. The two remaining groups were a tough battle, with Hants and Bucks making the final round robin competition. Sussex and Bucks were neck and neck to the very last series of games when John Thayre came up trumps to win the competition for Alfold.”             

……and……..

“Sussex, with local league players Tony Franks, John Slee and Peter Gibbs, retained the Southern Counties team championship against Kent, Wilts and Hants. After the initial matches, there was a three-way tie, and so points scored sorted them out with Sussex first, Kent runners-up and Wilts third. The three local lads won seven out of their nine frames. On Saturday at Canterbury the current England team, with Franks and Slee, met a Canterbury side in a sponsored match. England won easily 10-1, but the points total was of more interest as around £1400 was raised for local Kent charities.”

Article:

A Somerset Cricket team v England Bar Billiards XI bar billiards challenge took place at Castle Cary, Somerset on 15/6/84  (see press clipping below);

Castle Cary.jpg

“As I understand it the match was Somerset (a bar billiards league and county in those days) v England.

The Somerset team happened to have Mr Gatting playing for them.

There have been other famous celebrities known to turn their hand to bar billiards in the past: Steve Davis being one.

There was also the famous newsreader Reginald Bosanquet who once visited what is now the Holbrook Club at Horsham.

Bill Maynard (aka Claude Greengrass in Heartbeat) played county for Leicestershire.

Sean Connery owned a table at his basement flat in London.

I also have a picture of Kate Humble standing next to a bar billiards table holding a pet, though I don't know if she has ever dabbled.

My favourite piece of research was about the Kinks pop band who used to frequent their local pub in North London for a game.”   - Clive T

Guinness Book of Records entry:  Keith Sheard scored 28,530 in 19 min 5 sec in a league game at the Crown and Thistle, Headington, Oxford on 9 July 1984.

The 2nd National Off-spot singles also held in Nov: Winner is John Burrows, runner-up unknown.

The 4th British Isles Open, at the Inn on the Park, St Helier, Jersey is won by Peter Noel with Don Cadec the runner-up – both from Jersey. Two more locals Tony Williams and Les  Allen are 3rd and 4th respectively. Micky Daw, G Richard, Sussex’s Terry Race and Guernsey’s John Beck complete the quarterfinal lineup.

The 3rd  International is played at the Chequers Thistle Hotel, Horley: England beat Jersey 11-0 and England Ladies win 4-1.

The 2nd British Pairs was held at the Landsdowne Hotel, Eastbourne: Steve Biggs and Peter Farrelly are the winners, with Keith Sheard and Dave Plumstead the runners-up.

1985

The 11th All-England Indivs were staged:  Hertfordshire’s Darrell Johnson wins the Men’s Championship from Buckinghamshire’s John Burrows; John Davie from Sussex is third.  Herts’s  Vivien Shepherd beats Oxon’s Pauline Withey for the (12th) Ladies title.

The 14th County Championships were played and Berks win with runners-up unknown.  Oxon win the 13th Ladies from Sussex.

Press clipping

“Playing in the finals of the All-England Bar Billiards Association’s inter-counties competition, the Sussex ladies team narrowly failed to retain the trophy they won last year. Oxfordshire were adjudged winners, having the highest total score in their two matches. The only player in the Sussex side with a 100% record was Sheila Pinner of Worthing. Her teammates were Margaret Coble (Billingshurst), Kim Hart (Hastings),  Jackie Spooner(Horsham), Sandra Alderson and Jean Over (Brighton) Roz Rees (Mid Sussex) and Gina Sherrat (Worthing/Brighton).”

 

5th British Isles Open at the Inn on the Park, St Helier is won by a mainlander for the first time: Bernie McCluskey (Berks) beats Guernsey’s Paul Webb in the Final. Harry Barbet comes 3rd and  P Saunders 4th. S Davis, Pete Collett, Tony Tagg and Sussex’s Roger Taylor make it to the Last Eight.

1985.jpg              

The 13th NBBA Team Championships were played:  The Crown and Thistle win for Oxon - as they did in 1981 - but no other details available. The year before the team had broken a World Record held for 17 years by the Lord Napier for the highest aggregate score in a match by a team of five: The new record of 102,330, made against the Tandem from Kennington, beat the previous one by an amazing 30,000 points.

3rd National Off-the-Spot singles - Winner John Burrows, runner-up unknown.

The 1st National Under-22 Team Championship is won by Kent, with Berkshire the runners-up.

Paul Sainsbury recollects:

“My younger brother Jonathan was a member of the Kent team in '85, along with Ricky Brownlow among others. I think Doug Phillips who still plays in Tunbridge Wells may have been in the team as well. I was in fact the driver for the day and remember it well as Jonathan was the first Sainsbury to get an AEBBA winner’s trophy (I was runner-up in 1982 AEBBA singles).”

Jersey are beaten 4-7 by England in the 4th International…..and Jersey Ladies lose 3-4.

3rd British Open Pairs held at the Lansdowne Hotel, Eastbourne: Winners are Berkshire’s Bernie McCluskey and Will Leary, the runners-up Brian Wood and Chas Jones from Kent.

1986

The 12th All-England Singles (Mens and 13th Ladies) were held at Harwell: Paul Sainsbury is Mens Champion from Bernie McCluskey.  John Burrows is third. Kent’s Vivien Shepherd is the Ladies champ, runner-up unknown

The 15th County Championships were played at Harwell and Bucks win with Kent runners-up  Kent Ladies win the 14th from Bucks.

The 14th NBBA Team Championships were played at Harwell:  The Cabman’s Rest from Portsmouth are the winners, with Gardeners Arms, Sompting (Worthing) runners-up and Woodstock Arms (Oxford)  3rd.

The 4th National Off-spot singles also held in Nov: Three-in-a-row winner is John Burrows, runner-up unknown.

The 2nd National Under-22 Team Championship is won by Sussex, with Kent the runners-up.

Junior3.jpg

1986/87 Press clipping:

“The best young Bar Billiards players in All of England : that’s Sussex, as on Sunday (23rd November 1986) at the Sunallon Club, Horsham the County Under-22 team swept all aside to win the All-England U-22 Championship.

Sussex’s team consisted of Tommy Orr(County Club, Littlehampton, Capt) aged 20; Graham Mepham (Romans, Southwick) aged 17, and three local players (pictured above) David Vizor (aged 20) and Michael Fairs (both of Roffey SSC) and Paul Rose (aged 19) of the Green Dragon, Horsham.

The Groups, which were originally to have included Lincs and Bucks who were unable to attend, were re-drawn with Northants, Kent and Hampshire in Group A and Sussex, Berkshire and Oxon in Group B.

Sussex started with a ‘Bye’ in Group B whilst Oxon beat Berks 4-1. Then Sussex beat Berks 3-2, the winners being Tommy Orr with 4640 (3260 break), Graham Mepham and Dave Vizor. The same three players then won against Oxford to qualify for a Final against Kent, the winners of Group A.

This time, after Graham Mepham had again delivered, Paul Rose found the form which had earlier eluded him, and David Vizor had the championship within his grasp when with the drop of the bar imminent, he pushed too far and lost a patiently-compiled 4000 break which cost him the game.

It was left to the safe hands of captain Tommy Orr – who despite his tender years is already a regular with current Interleague champions Littlehampton ‘A’ – to secure the match and take the highest break award with the 3260 he had earlier fired against Berkshire.”

Clive Thompson recollects:

“I was part of an organising committee for Sussex consisting of Charles Cordery, Norman Luxford, John Turner and myself. I had to act as Charlie's "gofer", organising scorers and collecting the slips after each game from the four tables. I recall that Kent under-22s were considered a "tasty" side and the Sussex team that was got together for the very first time were very chuffed to beat them, albeit on home ground.”

 

The 6th British Isles Open, at the Inn on the Park, St Helier, Jersey is won by Berkshire dustman Dave Harris  with Jersey’s  Peter Noel the runner-up. Jersey’s Tony Tagg and Brian Cook  are third and fourth. Graeme Marett,  Dave Gallichan and Sussex’s  Gary Ridley and Terry Race make the quarter-finals.

5th International is played at Horley: England beat Jersey 7-4 and England Ladies win 6-0.

The 4th British Pairs was held at the Landsdowne Hotel, Eastbourne: Bernie McCluskey and Will Leary are the winners again, with Steve Biggs and Peter Farrelly runners-up.

Guinness Book of Records entry:  Keith Sheard scored 1,500 points in a minute on BBC TV's Record Breakers on 23 Sep 1986.

1987

The 13th All-England Indivs was played at AERE Harwell: Kent’s Mick Lingham wins the Men’s Championship from Surrey’s Simon Tinto; Sussex’s Sheila Pinner beats Berkshire’s Myra Hawkins for the (14th) Ladies title.

The 16th County Championships were played in Harwell and Bucks win with Oxon runners-up.  Oxon win the 15th Ladies from Kent.

7th British Isles Open at the Inn on the Park, St Helier is won by Jersey’s Wayne Poingdestre. Runner-up is Kevin Tunstall. Locals M Cook and Vernon Festou are 3rd and 4th. Steve Ahier, Surrey’s Simon Tinto, Mark Goodyear and Sussex’s Colin Smith are quarterfinalists.

The 15th NBBA Team Championships were played at Harwell:  The Tandem (Kennington) win for Oxon, the Stocks (Beenham) are runners-up for Berkshire and the Greyhound (Kent) finish third.

5th National Off-the-Spot singles - Winner Bernie McCluskey; Runner-up Chas Jones

1st National Under-22s (replacing the Team event)  is won by Kent’s Ricky Brownlow of Kent, runner-up is M.Lee of Berkshire.

Jersey beat England 6-5 in the 6th International…..Jersey Ladies win 4-3.

5th British Open Pairs held at the Lansdowne Hotel, Eastbourne: Winners are Roy Buckle and Kent Murray, the runners-up Paul Sainsbury and Jan Powell.

1988

The 14th All-England Singles (Mens and 15th Ladies) were held at Harwell: Bernie McCluskey is Mens Champion from John Twell of Lincolnshire.  Kent’s Gay Austin is the Ladies champ, Surrey’s Alison Norman her runner-up.

The 17th County Championships were played at Harwell and Bucks win with Berks runners-up. Divisions 2 and 3 are formed for the first time, and Surrey win Div.2 from Hampshire and Cambs win Div 3 from Wiltshire.  Sussex Ladies win the 16th from Kent.

The 16th NBBA Team Championships were played at Harwell:  The Stocks, from Beenham in Berks are the winners, with Cabman’s Rest, Portsmouth runners-up and Ex-Services Club (Herts) come third.

The 6th National Off-spot singles also held in Nov: Winner is Paul Yeo, the runner-up Harry ‘the spider’ Barbet.

2nd National Under22 champion is Kent’s Curt Driver, runner-up is Oxon’s Paul Douglas.

The 8th British Isles Open, at the Inn on the Park, St Helier, Jersey is won by Alan Le Blond with Micky Daw the runner-up. Cyril Vibert is 3rd and Kent’s Paul Sainsbury is 4th. A Morris, Dave Harris, Dave Neilan and Kevin Tunstall complete the last 8 lineup.

7th International is played at Horley: England beat Jersey 11-0 and England Ladies win 5-0.

The 6th British Pairs was once again held at the Landsdowne Hotel, Eastbourne: Kev Tunstall and Pete Lee are the winners, with Paul Yeo and Andy Soper runners-up

1989

The 1st Charity Singles Tournament takes place at the Crest Hotel, High Wycombe: John Burrows the winner from Keith Sheard.

The 15th All-England Indivs was played at AERE Harwell, Alan Donovan from Bucks is the winner and Barry Radford of Hants the runner-up.

In the 16th Ladies' equivalent, Gay Austin of Kent retains her title, with Berkshire’s Jill Josey the runner-up.

The 18th County Championships were played in 3 divisions: Berks win Div.1 from runners-up Bucks; Northants win Div.2 from Cambs;  and Herts win Div.3 from Wilts.  Kent won the 17th Ladies from Oxfordshire.

The 1st Wessex Open is played at Portsmouth and Keith Salt defeated Mark Goodyear in the Final.

Jersey beat England 7-4 in the 8th International at the Metropole Hotel.....Jersey Ladies win 4-3.

The 17th NBBA Team Championships were played at Harwell:  The Lane End Sports and Social Club (Bucks) are Champions, with Pickwicks of Kent the runners-up and the Stocks from Beenham, Berks win 3rd place.

7th National Off-the-Spot singles - Winner Andy Harcourt; Runner-up John Burrows

3rd National Under-22s – Winner Tony Walsh (Berks); Runner-up Paul Douglas of Oxon again.

Guernsey’s Trevor Gallienne wins the 9th British Isles Open, defeating Kent’s Bob Taylor in the final. Jersey’s Vernon Festou comes 3rd and Hampshire’s Chris Barker is 4th but the details of the other quarter-finalists are not to hand.

7th British Open Pairs held at the Lansdowne Hotel, Eastbourne: Winners are Paul Sainsbury and Viv Wright; runners-up John Burrows and Chas Jones.

1990

The 2nd Charity Singles, held at H/Wycombe, won by Bernie McCluskey from Pete Farrelly

The 16th All-England Singles (Mens and 17th Ladies) were held at Harwell: Bernie McCluskey wins the Mens’ (runner-up unknown) whilst similarly Northants’ Pauline Ibbotson wins the Ladies with runner-up unknown.

The 19th County Championships were played at Harwell and Berks retain the title with the runners-up not known Surrey win Div.2 (runners-up unknown) and Div 3 records too are unavailable. Berkshire win the 18th Ladies from Kent.

The 2nd Wessex Open was held at the St James Hos.SC at Portsmouth: Kevin Tunstall beat Tony Martin in the final.

Guinness Book of Records entry:  26-27th May 1990: The highest score in a 24 hour marathon by a team of five is 1,754,730, set by Les Green, Richard Powell, Kevin Clark, Mick Lingham and Curt Driver of the Shipwrights Arms, Chatham, Kent

(Curt Driver recalls: .”From memory the rough averages per leg were :- Les 24.5k, Kev 23.5k, Mick 23k, Curt 21.5k and Richard 19k. It was one of those days when we all played very well in all but one of our allocated 16 games. Although we scored heavy, we all at one point lost one big score. We did try again the following year but come up short this time. Will it ever be beaten ?”)

The 18th NBBA Team Championships were played at Harwell:  The Lane End Sports and Social Club (Bucks) retain the  Championship, but no further details are available.

The 8th AE Off-spot singles also held in Nov: Chas Jones the winner, runner-up unknown.

The 4th National Under22 champion is Paul Scouse of Berkshire (runner-up unknown).

Gerry Whatling (Berks) beats Brian Paul (Northampton) in the final of the 1st National over50s in Harwell.

The 10th British Isles Open, at the Inn on the Park, St Helier, Jersey is won by Steve Ahier from Sussex’s Terry Race. Graham Bisson (3rd) Tony Tagg (4th), Micky Daw, Tim Douglas, Josie Maughan excel for Jersey with Sussex’s Colin Smith the only other mainlander to make the quarterfinals.

The 9th international is played at the Chequers Horley with the results England Men 8, Jersey 3 and England Ladies 4 Jersey 1.

8th British Pairs held at Eastbourne: Steve Biggs and Peter Farrelly are victors in the final over Paul Sainsbury and Viv Wright.

 

****NB. Part Two of this Timeline will be built round the 64 issues of Bar Billiards Quarterly, as produced by Peter Farrelly covering the years 1991 – 2005.****