Bowlers Bare All For The Hot Shots Of Bowls Charity Calendar
Bowlers across England are bravely baring all to raise money for Cancer Research UK and Bloodwise UK.
When you think about bowlers you might not necessarily think about (or want to think about) them stripping off and strategically placing all manner of bowls equipment to preserve their modesty. But that is exactly what has been happening around England in a bid to raise money for two very important charities while shaking up the stereotypes that bowls struggles with.
England international players Lorraine Kuhler, Natalie Chestney and Sian Honnor, with the help of a large number of friends and colleagues, are in the process of making The Hot Shots of Bowls calendar, a humorous and fun take on the game of bowls that aims to promote friendship in sport in support of fellow bowler Hannah Overton, 29, who was diagnosed with leukemia in July.
The Hunts player is currently undergoing a drugs trial and intensive chemotherapy at the Royal Leicestershire Infirmary.
“The idea came about as a result of a few drinks on a Saturday evening and a group chat between the three of us and it sort of spiralled from there,” said Lorraine. “I don’t think any of us could have predicted the incredible response and support we’ve received with this idea.
“The amount raised is overwhelming and to see so many of the bowls community come together in this way for such a great cause is heart warming. If the calendar manages to raise a smile for just a handful of people facing this battle then it has been a success.” Lorraine, from Sussex, knows first hand the effect cancer has on a family as her own father John is currently going through treatment.
Catherine Popple, who plays with Hannah, said: “Hannah is part of our club, I have bowled with her and against her for a long time, she is a lovely girl and this has come as a bolt out of the blue and when we heard the news we just wanted to rally round and do something to support her.”
The calendar is being sponsored by Bowls International and Taylor Bowls, Drakes Pride, Aero and Henselite have kindly donated bowls and clothing to help raise costs for printing.
Participants in the calendar include a wide range of bowlers- men and women, of all ages.
Sian said: “This calendar has proved what a great bunch of people we are surrounded with in the bowls world and those involved have had a lot of fun while doing something really good.
“Hannah has been vetting the photos along the way and has been kept amused by reports of each shoot as it’s fair to say there have been a few comical moments, especially considering we have seen more of each other than we ever dreamed of!
“This inspiring young woman is going through hell so we want her to know that we are thinking of her and wanting to do our bit to help in the fight against cancer.
“There are some big names in the English game that have bared all and we hope people will be entertained and understand what we are trying to achieve.”