The BTBA was formed on the 26th May 1961, since when it has stood the test of time with flying colours, having made a considerable impact on the Sport of Tenpin Bowling, not only in Britain, but World-wide. Prior to this time there were NO rules, NO guidelines to follow and as a result without schedules, average calculators, standing sheets, record cards etc. not only were there continual arguments but CHAOS REIGNED and, there was no recognition whatsoever.
Countless people try their hand at Tenpin Bowling each year and to most of them the physical act of rolling a bowling ball is fun and relaxing. Most people then progress to joining a league, where it is possible to win trophies and awards. The organisation of leagues is usually taken for granted and the story behind Tenpin Bowling and the BRITISH TENPIN BOWLING ASSOCIATION is overlooked.
One needs only to scan the contents of the BTBA Constitution to find the answer. The rules and regulations are set down as a result of voting by the bowlers themselves and administrated under the guidance of the BTBA. National Council, making TENPIN BOWLING one of the most democratic and fairest sports in the world.
There are universal standard measurements for lanes and their attendant equipment such as pins and balls. These provide the first steps of progress for bowlers in all establishments.
The BTBA is devoted to the interest of the game itself and is a credit to bowling throughout the world. As the Governing Body of the Sport in this country it provides a very comprehensive service to all its members and although the average bowler might be hard pressed to define the Association, while going about his/her league bowling without a further thought in unconscious security, he/she assumes that the BTBA will take care of him/her, and he/she is right.
Whether it is a sanctioned league or tournament, the word sanctioned would have little meaning if it were not backed by the realistic enforcement procedures to protect the integrity of rules and standards.
The BTBA not only takes punitive measures by expulsion or reprimand on those who violate the rules, but by early detection heads off any situation which might lead to serious trouble. In its roll of enforcer the BTBA proceeds in a spirit of equality and with an eye on the good of the game.
The BTBA works behind the scenes in a quiet and unobtrusive manner and is in direct contact with its members for many reasons, including, applications for membership, queries relating to rule interpretation and award applications, creating qualified instructors, providing for a special Junior and Young Adults Club, free insurance against loss of league funds, to name but a few. It may best be described as a non-profit making organisation founded to provide a much needed service to the mass of bowlers.
Various badges are now available at little or no cost to all BTBA members participating in sanctioned play.
The term B T B A SANCTIONED is like a guarantee on a product, reassuring the consumer of continued reliability and service. It indicates that the league conforms to rules and regulations etc., laid d by the BTBA in a pocket size rule book.
The Chairman and Vice-Chairman are elected by bowlers who attend the Annual General Meeting of the BTBA, having been nominated as delegates from their various local associations. These men and women are, in turn, eligible to be elected to the National Council who put in countless voluntary hours each year for the benefit of the Association and its members, in addition to promotion of the sport.
The BTBA's right-hand man at local level is the Local Association Secretary, who carries stocks of printed materials for the use of leagues in his/her area and is available for any assistance which is required at the local level, as well as maintaining regular contact with Head Office.
Another source of enjoyment should be Tournaments which represent fair competition, whether handicap, classified or open. In addition to a variety of house, fraternal or organised tournaments, each BTBA County Association crowns its Champions at an annual event, highlighting the Tournament Calendar. The British Showcase is undoubtedly the BTBA National Championships which brings together more than one thousand bowlers from different parts of the country to compete in this prestigious event each year.