Feb 25, 2022 | ClubHub

Retro cool in the best location in metro Melbourne

Formerly known as the St Kilda Bowling Club (prior to incorporation) the St Kilda Sports Club has been on the very same site in Fitzroy Street since 1865. It is the second oldest existing bowls club in Australia. The part of the clubhouse that was built in 1876 is indeed THE oldest clubhouse in Australia and is listed on the Victorian Heritage Register.

CCV recently re-signed the club as a member. Understanding the landscape around clubs and the function of boards, HR and IR and of course directions on COVID 19 restrictions can be daunting and cumbersome. CCV couldn’t be more delighted than to welcome them back and we trust provide valuable help and advice.

The club is chic, cool, retro, vibrant and fun. It has fabulous functions with local musicians, is a local watering hole and has four distinct sporting offers in Bowls, Cricket, Petanque and darts (not casual darts, real competition darts). It welcomes barefoot bowling, BBQ functions outside and connects with not only traditional members but a much younger set who love the location and extraordinary surroundings of the eclectic population of St Kilda.

Club Manager Lauren Paterson said it has been tough throughout the pandemic, but the members and locals have been loyal and understanding. “It is a privilege to be associated with a club with such a rich history. We are not state of the art, but we are part of the art of the State.” What a great way of putting your position and even better way of making what is old, new again.

The history page goes into detail here’s a little interest extract.

“It was a great day at St Kilda on the 2 January 1868, when his Royal Highness Prince Alfred, the Duke of Edinburgh, visited the bowling green. He was expected to arrive at 11 am, but did not appear until nearly one o’clock, when he drove up with his team of greys. The game was explained to him, and he tried his hand at it, and “as each bowl left the Royal hand the Member’s loud cheers were ready chorus”. He was then taken to plant a tree, which he with difficulty did, for the people – “the females particularly” – crowded so close that the police had a hard job to keep the place clear. The Duke expressed a desire to become an honorary member of the club, which the committee resolved should henceforth be known as the “Royal Alfred Bowling Club”. That title was soon supplanted by the “Prince Alfred Bowling Club”, which was retained until 1882, when the original name of “St Kilda Bowling Club” was reverted to.”

It is a casual feel and even on my fleeting visit the few members who were practicing, a couple of maintenance guys and the team in the office all said ‘Hi”. On the fringes of Albert Park just as you turn into Fitzroy Street from Punt Road you will find the St Kilda Sports Club. Everyone is welcome. 

Written by Peter Franich



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