The History of the Gwyn
(With many thanks to Frank
Eeles for allowing us to use extracts from his book
“Bowling Down the Years – A History of the P&D”).
The Gwyn Guy Trophy is an
annual tournament played between Hampshire Bowling
Associations. Many bowlers are unclear as to how and why
this tournament was set up, so the following will clear
these matters up.
There has always been a
friendly (well almost) rivalry between the Portsmouth
and District Bowling Association and their counterparts
in the Southampton & District Association.
During a P&D Dinner in
1962, there was a discussion (well friendly argument)
between the Presidents of the respective Associations as
to who was the stronger of the Districts in Hampshire. A
tentative offer was made by Portsmouth to provide a
trophy for an inter-divisional tournament.
Following on from the
dinner, at a Southampton & District Committee meeting
held on 7th May 1963, Mr Gwyn Guy told the
meeting about that banter. The outcome of this was that
the meeting instructed the Southampton Secretary to
contact not only the P&D, but also District Bowling
Associations of Bournemouth and Aldershot, to arrange a
meeting about setting up to set up an inter-divisional
tournament, at which the rules and other details would
A year went by, until at
another Southampton Committee Meeting, an enquiry was
made about what had been the outcome of the letters sent
to the other Associations. It appeared that all four
Associations were keen on the idea, but nobody had
thought about a suitable trophy. So, The Southampton
Committee agreed to put up a trophy, at which point Gwyn
Guy kindly offered to donate one.
So, at a meeting of the
four District Association Secretaries, held on 9th
November 1964 at the Atherley Bowling Club, it was
agreed that this Inter-Divisional competition should be
started, the winners to receive the Trophy that Gwyn Guy
And so the Gwyn Guy Trophy
was born in 1965.
It is an annual
competition, the basis of play being:
- A Round Robin series
of matches involving all Districts.
- Each match to be
played at an agreed venue and would consist of 6 Rinks
of 4 players, played over 21 Ends.
- The winning Team would
get 2 points
Competition, involving Aldershot, Bournemouth,
Portsmouth and Southampton, took place at various venues
around the County Districts, and was won by Bournemouth,
with Portsmouth Runners-Up.
This format continued
until 1968, at which time it was agreed that the matches
should be played at one venue with adjacent greens over
Bournemouth dropped out and were replaced by
The competition flourished
over the years under the guidance and hard work put in
by the Competition Secretary, assisted by the support of
the competing Associations. Brian Brouard was the long
suffering Secretary between 1985 and 2000.
So there you have it. Many
a generation of bowler, including some of the most
prolific names in Portsmouth and County bowls have
represented the P&D in combat against the other
divisions with a fair degree of success.
It has always been
regarded as a huge honour to be selected to represent
Portsmouth in the Gwyn Guy. Good luck to all those names
who will continue this fine competitive tradition.