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Bowls in Wales is modernising and the Welsh Bowls Federation (WBF) owes its very existence to that exciting fact. The WBF was formed to improve channels of communication between governing bodies and to act as a centralised, co-ordinating body for bowls in Wales. Established in 2001, the WBF is an umbrella body with responsibility for issues common to all bowls associations and is made up of representatives from five national governing bodies.

These are the Welsh Bowling Association (WBA); the Welsh Indoor Bowls Association (WIBA); the Welsh Ladies Indoor Bowling Association (WLIBA); the Welsh Women’s Bowling Association (WWBA) and the Welsh Short Mat Bowls Association (WSMBA).

Both the Welsh Bowls Coaching Association (WBCA) and Welsh Bowls Umpires Association (WBUA) are also represented. Today, the WBF has a membership of over 25,000 people (including over 1,000 juniors) in 670 affiliated clubs aged from 8 years upwards from all social backgrounds who regularly enjoy the sport throughout the principality.

Since its establishment, the Welsh Bowls Federation has made great progress in the development areas of the game arising from its representations and liaison with the Sports Council for Wales. Progress has been made across all the governing bodies in the fields of Junior Development, Youth Development, High Performance Development and Elite Development.

The Junior Development Programme, in particular, has been a great success. Since April 2007, the schools programme, which links clubs with local schools, has introduced over 25,000 children between the ages of 9 and 12 to the sport – ensuring that the generations who will be the future of bowls have an early exposure to it.

Future Aims

The Welsh Bowls Federation further aims to develop the skills and confidence of current junior members and to accredit more coaches to take the youth development programme forward. We are seeking funding for specialist coaching sessions for players of promise aged 14-18. The Federation aims to run the sessions as a national project co-ordinated on a county/regional basis level.

At the other end of the membership range, we aim to encourage and recruit more people from the older generations to get active and lead healthy and social lifestyles by playing bowls. This will enrich and boost existing membership in Wales as well as doing our part for a healthy Wales.


The WBF seeks to advise and guide it's member Associations. By research, development and shared communication of best practices enable them to improve, grow and develop. It aims to foster and safeguard the game , promoting healthy lifestyles through the provision of bowls and to contribute to the continuing development and success of the sport in Wales, the UK and Worldwide.