MEMBERS of the Melville Bowling and Recreation Club voted on December 21 to relocate the club.
Most of the 71 members opted to move, a decision that was in stark contrast to a vote held in mid-2016 involving hundreds of the club’s social bowlers and members, in which players chose to stay.
But Ken Atkins, the group’s new president, said the December 21 vote was constitutional because only full members were allowed to vote.
Social member Karl Kelers, of Alfred Cove, raised concerns with the Melville Times that members like him had no say on the matter this time around and he understood a letter from the City of Melville chief executive was circulated to all present before the ballot.
City of Melville chief executive Shayne Silcox confirmed a letter was sent to the president of the Melville Bowling Club in response to the club’s executive committee’s concerns regarding the unrest at the club.
Dr Silcox said the vote would have no impact on the lease agreement and the City understood social members could not vote.
Mr Atkins said he had requested a letter of clarification from the City because “some people did not have the correct facts”. He would not comment on the contents of the letter.
From here, he said, the club would continue to negotiate with the council to try to get the best outcome for the club in the new location.
“The wheels of council don’t move too fast but they’re aiming for mid-2018,” he said.
Mr Atkins has been the club’s president since August.
Early last year, the City of Melville released a report into the future of lawn bowls in Melville that included a recommendation to shift Melville Bowling Club 300m to the east to a new Tompkins Park sporting hub.
In June, the council directed Dr Silcox to investigate suitable future recreational uses for the Melville Bowling Club site if it were to be vacated.
The City has previously said the Wave Park Group proposal was received subsequent to that meeting.