Latest Press Releases

Lions Club of Leigh on Sea Sponsor Southend Blind Welfare Bowlers

Southend Blind Welfare Organisation are bowled over by their winning teams

Southend Blind Welfare Organisation is delighted to announce that two teams from their bowling club – the Kursaal Flyers – have made it through to the National Blind Tenpin Bowling Finals in Wigan on 12th May.

The club meet every Thursday afternoon to compete and practice for the league at the Kursaal Bowling Alley in Southend.  The 12 strong team has been running since 2009 and boasts 3 original members, one of whom is their captain, Anne Morris.

“I started bowling as I enjoyed the challenge.  People don’t expect partially sighted people to be able to do it.  I get a real buzz from a good game and a sense of satisfaction. We are all so excited that we have made it to the finals this year, especially as we had a nail-biting wait to hear from the organisers once all the league results had been announced.”

“We are a friendly bunch of all ages, from our late 30s to 80 and we even have a wheelchair player.  It’s good to mix with other people who are also experiencing sight loss.  This is the positive side of having a visual impairment.”

This is not the first time that the SBWO team has reached the finals – the Kursaal Flyers came 3rd and 5th in 2013 and the first team have lifted the trophy once before in 2014. They will be up against 10 other teams all competing for the kudos of becoming National Champions.

Having agreed to sponsor the t-shirts for the finalists, Debs Jones, President of Leigh on Sea Lions Club, commented, “As a local community group we have often supported the work of Southend Bind Welfare Organisation and are especially pleased that we have been able to help their bowling team.  Leigh on Sea Lions Club wishes them every success at the finals next month.”

The bowling club are helped at their practice sessions by SBWO volunteers who guide the players up to the line and advise them on the pins left to be knocked down.  Each partially sighted bowler has a handicap and plays to their own ability.  Despite their success, the team is still in need of a qualified coach since one of the founding members, Bob Wren, moved away last year.

SBWO wishes both teams success in the upcoming finals.  Lucy Martin, SBWO Chief Executive says, “We are very proud of our bowlers and their amazing achievement.  They are a talented and determined group of people and I’m sure they will bring home a trophy or two!”

The Westcliff-based charity was set up in 1958 and over the years has grown and developed an Equipment and Information Centre, social activities and clubs, a help desk at Southend Hospital Eye Clinic, trips out, reading groups, IT courses, a loan scheme and telephone/drop in advice.

Southend Blind Welfare Organisation is the only charity in Southend that offers help for people who are blind or partially sighted.

For more information on joining the bowling team or making a donation to SBWO, please call 01702 342131.

Design Competition Sponsorship

South-East Essex Design Competition was formed from unpaid volunteers forming a charity which has run for over 35 years for the benefit of local schoolchildren to encourage innovation and creativity in the creative Arts and Design and Technology throughout the curriculum in schools from reception to post 16.   Their website is

An invitation is sent to all schools with a request for an idea of entry numbers by beginning of February to allow time to organise the appropriate number of judges.  All the entries can be any technology/creative arts projects and should show development from the initial ideas to the finished products.  Primary schools usually enter whole school/year/class/club entries. Secondary schools are encouraged to enter individual/club/group entries and need to bring their notebooks when judged.  Gold, Silver and Bronze certificates are awarded and a small monetary prize.

Leigh on Sea Lions Club were happy to sponsor the competition this year to carry on a wonderful tradition.

Club 50+ Donation

Lion President Deb Jones, handed over £100 to Club 50+ Chairman Tony Harrison of the Club50+ Committee; on her right is Ricky Bindahnee, Trustees Chairman, along with other Committee members and volunteers.

Children in Need Grand Quiz

We had a really great (if tiring)  day fund raising for BBC Children In Need on Friday 18th November. Thank you to the commuters at Chalkwell and Leigh stations, who kindly donated £430.23 to the cause.

In the evening, we ran our 4th Charity Grand Quiz at Leigh Community Centre, raising a further £192 with our raffle, so thanks to the competitors for digging deep – and to Jan for donating some handsome prizes.

Everyone seemed to enjoy the challenging quiz, and the winners were team Norwegian Blue, taking away a cheque for   £1000 for the Essex Horse and Pony Protection Society. The second prize of £500 was won by U3A for the charity Headway Essex.  We decided to give a bonus prize of £100 to the team (and charity) The Art Ministry, who were few in number – and struggled with questions on the early space missions. Evidently they were all too young……!!

Essex Horse and Pony Protection Society receiving their £1000 prize money

U3A receiving £500 on behalf of Headway Essex

The Art Ministry saying thank you for their £100 bonus prize

Safety Bed Purchased for Kingsdown School

Amelia is 11 years old.  She has profound and multiple learning difficulties and goes to Kingsdown School.

At home she has a Bear Snooze bed that is enclosed that she is unable to get out of and harm herself provided by the local authority.

To enable the family to have a holiday together Donna Slattery, her mother, found a “Safety Sleeper” that fits on to any single bed and completely encloses it so the child inside cannot harm themselves or get out of bed.  This folds down into a suitcase so can easily be transported, even on to a plane.   It costs £2,995.

Leigh Lions bought the Safety Sleeper for Amelia to use for holidays and they have in fact taken their first family holiday abroad to Spain.  It is available for use by any of the children in Kingsdown School to go on holiday.  Another boy has used it to go on holiday with his parents to Scotland.