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Weekly wins year-long fight to save sports club’s future

A sports club’s future has been secured thanks to a weekly newspaper’s campaign.

The Northamptonshire Telegraph has declared victory in its bid to save Corby’s Forest Bowling Club from being consigned to history.

Its future had been under threat after being told this time last year that they had just one month to get out of their 72-year-old club house by landlord Star Pubs.

But, after the Telegraph covered the issue, Star Pubs has backed down and offered the club a new 10-year lease with no rent rise.

Corby Bowls

The Kettering-based weekly splashed on the victory on the front page of its Corby edition yesterday.

Telegraph reporter Kate Cronin told HTFP: “Forest Bowling Club is a lifeline for so many people in Corby. When we went along to speak to members last year, many were in tears at the prospect of its closure.

“It’s so much more than a bowls club. They’d been together so long that for many members, it was like a second family.

“It’s the kind of place that, once it disappears, you can’t replicate. We were so happy when, after our campaign, the pub company changed its mind on this.

Added Kate: “We are proud that when our readers in Corby have a problem, they come to the Northants Telegraph for help.

Our record of campaigning in Corby is strong – in the past couple of years we’ve successfully worked with community groups to bring in new rules around HMOs, to protect our world-renowned children’s centre Pen Green and to save ten community centres. We’ve also taken our Collette Gallacher campaign all the way to Westminster.

“Newspapers still have a really important role to play in communities like Corby.

“It’s our responsibility not to just report on the towns we cover, but to be a real, active part of those communities, to defend their interests and to amplify their voices.”