Our Bowling Club through the ages

In 1938 the McLaren Park Committee purchased from Mr. H.B. Pridmore a strip of ground in the township, and on the portion facing the main road a six-rink bowling green was laid down, thanks mainly to the enthusiastic planning and tireless services of Mr. Gerald Ward. This was opened by Mr. Pridmore in February 1940.

Courtesy of the ‘Rich Valley’ by Adele Pridmore.

1954/5 Open Day

The earliest pictures known of a newly built McLaren Vale Bowls Club.

1961/2 Open Day

Past Presidents gathered together. The club is described as ‘McLaren Districts Bowling Club’.
Past Presidents are:-
Row L to R : Pridmore H.B. (1938-41/1948-49), Crocker G.E.L. (1941-43), Johnston A.H. (1943-45), Bosworth C.R(1945-46), Bagshaw E.S. (1946-48), Oliver R.W. (1949-51). Whiting V.S. (1951-53), Tassie Dr G. (1953-55), Ellis G.A. (1955-56), Gould E.W.B. (1956-57), Trott R.F. (1957-59), Dyer O.I. (1959-61).
Front: Hagley R.E. (1961-62)

1962 approx.

Another section of 4 windows plus a lean-to has been added.



View from ‘C’ green over ‘B’ green showing the Southern Vales Co-operative Winery Ltd.
This was the first winery on this site ‘The Wattles’ constructed by Horace Pridmore around 1896. Penfolds Wines bought the winery from Cyril Pridmore in 1910, and expanded the plant and buildings, creating a model one-level winery, which functioned until 1961.
In 1965 the winery was sold and re-opened as the centre of operations for a co-operative of district growers. The Southern Vales Co-operative Winery Ltd. then ran their winery until 1993, when it was sold to Tatachilla, who re-opened the winery and cellar door in 1995. The winery was owned by Tinlins until sold and developed for housing in 2012.

1985 International Australia vs New Zealand warm up

A great day for the club, International Bowls comes to McLaren Vale Bowling Club with Australia vs New Zealand warm-up matches played at the club.

Dom Scarpantoni marking on a singles game.


‘A’ green with a change to larger club windows (the date this occurred is uncertain).

‘B’ green with edge of Southern Vales Co-operative Winery Ltd. buildings on the left later to become Tatachilla Winery.


‘B’ green with a very green background – no shed or Kindergarten.

A very colourful roadside garden on ‘A’ green.


President John Talbot with Don Newby.

The newly revamped bar.

1990 Opening Day

Doctor Gemmel Tassie (Patron) opening the proceedings.

David Rehn with a young Scott Binns (his Grandson) & Patron Lex Johnston.

B.Mills, R.Mayne, A.Binns, J.Symons, Unknown, D.Rehn, D.Kay, M.Tugwell, B.Shipley, L.Johnston, G.Tassie.


Bar Manager Des Kay and Chris Kay presiding over a very vine covered bar.


Club Singles Champion Mark Tynan Assoc. Champion of Champions.


Trees on the front of ‘A’ green must go.


Floodlights being fitted for the new lighting system on ‘B’ green.

2001 – The club’s tribute to Doctor Gemmel Tassie

2006 – The Commonwealth Games torch comes to the club

2015 – Club Renovations


2015 – ‘B’ Green reseeding



2017 – ‘A’ Green reseeding



April 2018 – Trees in the car park removed ready for the car park upgrade



September 2018 – Car Park upgrade

May 2018 – B / C Green embankment upgrade


June / July 2018 – B / C Green embankment upgrade


August 2018 – B / C Green embankment upgrade


September 2018 – B / C Green embankment upgrade

Thankyou to all the people who contributed to the Club History page, especially McLaren Vale Bowling Club members that are no longer with us. Without the dedication of all past and present Club Members, the majority of pictures would have been lost.

The history of the Bowling Club needs to be documented, updated and kept for future members to appreciate.

Send items for inclusion to the Webmaster via the Club e-mail: mclvbc@gmail.com