Halkshill Bowling Club, as it was called then, was inaugurated on 12 May 1888. It was laid with turf supplied by the Scott family from Halkshill Estate, hence the original name of the Club.
The Club was opened as a private Club by former members of Allanpark Bowing Green, where the Largs Library now sits.
They took over the lease of Stewart's Bowling Green, owned by a Mr. Barbour. The Allanpark green became the public facility and the new Halkshill the private one.
The first President, a Mr. John Orr claimed that bowling gave
- healthy and not over-fatiguing exercise
- that it could be engaged in at hours that did not interfere with one's business
- that it was all over at sundown, or at the latest, 'in the gloaming', allowing everyone to be in their own house by 9 or 10 o'clock, a very safe hour even in these days of 'early closing'
- (From club records, two of the 'skips' who played each other on that first Opening Day were a Mr. Hill and a Mr. A. Rodger )
The first Annual Subscription was 15 shillings for adults and 10 shillings for juniors.
It was between 1894 and 1896 that the name was amended to Halkshill.
The Club was eventually purchased from the trustees of the late Mr. Barbour's estate in 1926.
For the first 50 years or more the Club 'pavilion' was a small brick-built building (which eventually became the old bowls house).
After the Second World War the members acquired a good sized American army hut which was transported from Bishopton and reconstructed in Wilson Street, to give greater changing and storage room for the members.
In 1952 ladies were admitted as Associate Members.
In 1963 a liquor license was obtained and the 'Blue Bar' opened.
A certain Mr. John McKinnon was appointed Barman in 1966, a post he held for about 30 years.
In 1968, following a proposal by Largs Town Council to build an Indoor Bowling club, which came to nothing, the then President Ex-Provost Bert Acheson proposed the our Club develop its' own facility.
Despite an offer of a grant by the Scottish Sports Council, the healthy housekeeping by Halkshill enabled the 3-rink Indoor Rink to be opened on May 15 1971 at a cost of £29,000 to the club - what foresight!
In 1972 the Sports Council Grant was taken to cover the opening of the new bar and lounge, replacing the 'hut'.
A further extension, adding function suite, offices, kitchen and Boardroom took place on April 22 1981, this project cost £100,000 and was opened on April 22 1981 by Mrs. Robertson of Noddsdale. wife of our Honorary President, Mr. Peter Robertson, OBE.
A photograph of the Past Presidents dating from the Centenary Year (1988)
Ladies were admitted to the Club as Full Members in 2002.
The foregoing has been condensed from the Centenary Magazine published in 1988 and edited by Drew Cochrane.
2004 was a memorable year in the history of Halkshill Bowling Club. William (Bill) Brooks was elected to serve as the President of the Ayrshire Bowling Association. This was obviously a great honour for Bill and the Club. In addition, Bill was made Honorary Vice-President of Largs Halkshill in 2008.
Unfortunately, Bill passed away on Thursday 1st April, 2010. The funeral was at Clark Memorial Church on Friday 9th April and the large attendance was a mark of the respect that everyone who knew Bill, had for him.