Mermaid Bowls League
Mermaid Bowls League


League Rules for the 2023 - 2024 Bowling Season

1. The organisation shall be known as the MERMAID BOWLS LEAGUE


2. The management of the League shall be conducted by the OFFICERS and TEAM CAPTAINS or team member nominated by that Captain. A majority of member Clubs will constitute a quorum. Voting shall be one vote per club, in the event of a tie the Chairman will have the casting vote. Voting will be by a show of hands but any club has a right to a secret ballot.


3. The League shall elect a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. The Offices of Secretary and Treasurer may be combined.


4. The Treasurer shall be responsible for the League’s account at an approved bank. The Chairman and Treasurer will sign all withdrawals.


5. Vacancies occurring in office shall be filled at the Committee’s discretion and any such person appointed shall hold office to the end of season.


6. The League shall hold an A.G.M. every year and as many committee meetings comprising Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer as may be necessary to run the League efficiently.


7. League fees shall consist of a registration fee of £15.00 payable to the League Treasurer before the commencement of each season. (Fees increase from £10 to £15 as from the 2016 season ~ Approved at the 2014 AGM)


8. The League shall consist of mixed teams, a minimum of three ladies or a mixture of ladies and juniors under sixteen (juniors may be male or female), playing matches of four triples to represent each team.


8a. Rule to stay as it is,  except that if a team can only get six player to play, then there shall be a minimum of 1 lady / junior included in the team (Agreed at the 2023 AGM).


8b. Any new Club who may wish to apply to join the League must obtain the approval by a  majority vote of the existing League member clubs to secure acceptance.

(Amendment to Rule 8 ~ 2022 AGM "from a unanamous vote by all member clubs" to "a majority vote".)


8c. Team Numbers. Teams can be reduced to 3 triples if a club wishes to do so. The league committee must know of this decision by the 31st January each year, so that everyone can be given this information for their fixture programme. The committee must know of every club's decision. Club's must stay with their decision for the season, if their circumstance changes, then that club must apply to the committee to review their playing format choice. (Agreed at 2023 AGM)


9.The Home team select the rinks to be played on i.e. 1 - 4 or 2 - 5 etc.

The Away captain places the Home teams score cards face down, then places one of his teams score cards face down, on top of each of the Home teams cards. Then a rink number is drawn and placed on each pair of cards to denote which rink each game is played on. (Changed at 2012 AGM)


10. Those playing must have been a member of the club they represent for at least one month prior to playing.


11. Under no circumstances may a player play for more than one club within the course of the schedule. If a team does not have a full complement of players ten minutes after the scheduled start of play they will forfeit the two rink points and five shots will be added to the overall score of their opponents.

In the event of inclement weather or impending poor light, Captains may take a mutual decision to dispense with Trial Ends and/or agree to count one shot only on the first two ends. If either Captain was not in agreement, then the normal practice of Trial Ends would apply.


12. Position standings shall be determined on the basis of games won and lost. There will be TWO points per rink won and ONE point for each rink tied. A further TWO points will be awarded to the team with the most shots: a maximum often TEN points per match. Each match shall be contested over EIGHTEEN ends unless each of the opposing competing Captains agree to fewer ends due to unsuitable conditions. TEN ends shall be the MINIMUM played for the match to be valid. If less than TEN ends are played the match shall count as a cancelled match and the points shared. All rink scoreboards will be left in position at the end of the rink showing the final score of that rink until all rinks are finished playing and the match is completed. Skips will keep the scorecard.


(Clarification/Amendment to this Rule added at 2013 AGM.)
If play has to be ended during a game due to inclement weather or the Green becoming unplayable, the Captains to agree on ending the match, if in dispute the final decision is that of the home Captain.

Should this situation arise, all rink scores for the ends completed will count, and the overall result will be determined from these scores. Not all rinks will have to have played the same number of ends.

If ten (10) ends have not been completed, existing Rule 12 applies.


12a. Match Scoring.

If a match involves teams that have elected to play 3 triples then the scoring will be as follows.

3 points per rink and 1 point for overall score. 

If a rink is drawn after 18 ends, then an extra end will be played to decide the 3 points, this is so no half points are involved in the scoring.

If a match involves 4 triples, scoring as normal.

If a team is a rink short, then 5 shots and the 2 or 3 points will be awarded to the opposition as normal.

(Agreed at the 2023 AGM)


13. In the event of a match having to be cancelled because of bad weather the Captain of the home team shall notify the Captain of the opposing team and the League Secretary at their earliest opportunity and in any case within seven days. Failure to do so may incur a penalty deduction of two League points from the Home Team. The match must be rearranged on a suitable date agreeable to both teams and the rearranged date to be made known to the League Secretary before the match takes place. Should any dispute arise between the opposing teams, it must be referred to the League Secretary for a decision. If a subsequent arrangement to play a rearranged match can not be put into effect then only with the agreement with the League Secretary the points will be shared – FIVE to each team. If a cancellation occurs for any other reason the Captain of the team unable to attend shall notify the Captain of the opposing team and the League Secretary who will decide the distribution of points.



13a.  Rule for non attendance to a match

If any team does not fulfil a match and gives away all 10 points, then that teams results for all the season are null and void, unless there are exceptional circumstances for this which are accepted as a valid reason by the committee.     (Agreed at 2023 AGM)


14. In the event of a player not being able to continue due to a disability, injury or emergency then, provided TEN ends or more have been played the game on that rink shall cease at the standing score. Should the emergency arise before TEN ends have been played the game shall become null and void on that rink only and the TWO rink points for that rink shall be awarded to the opponents.


(Clarification/Amendment to this Rule added at 2013 AGM & 2014 AGM.)

In the situation where a player is not able to continue playing due to illness, injury or an emergency, a reserve of either gender may be used at any time. The sub may not take on the position of skip, however the rest of that rink may change their positions. The substitute must be a playing member of the club involved.

Should a team not have a sub available and ten (10) ends have not been completed on that rink the existing Rule 14 will apply.


15. A member may be dismissed from the League or an Officer removed from the League for conduct derogatory to the best interest of the League, deliberate action which can be proven to be detrimental to the best interests of the team or for violation of any League rule. Any complaint against a League member must be in writing and the case will be considered by the officers at a meeting the date of which must be within 7 days of the receipt of the complaint.


16. If at the end of the season more than one team shares the lead, the winner will be the team with the greater of number of shots for. If these are equal, the team with the least shots against shall be adjudged to be the winners. The winning club/team will be presented with the MERMAID BOWLS LEAGUE CHALLENGE CUP to be held for one year. The Winning club/team will also receive a cheque for £50.00 (Fifty Pounds). Amendment agreed at the 2008 AGM :- 2nd Place Team will receive a cheque for £20 and the Third place team a cheque for £10.


17. The usual dress shall be white or Club coloured shirts/blouses above the waist. Tailored grey trousers, shorts or skirts below the waist  (Players are permitted to wear grey knee-length tailored shorts in hot weather.) White, Brown or Grey flat soled shoes to be worn. (Amended at 2014 AGM)






The original Rules were last overhauled at the 2007 AGM (All amendments to those rules since then are listed below)


Only Rule 16 modified at AGM 2008 (Extra Prizes)

Amendment/Correction to rule 9 (Corrected at 2012 AGM)

Addendum to the Rule 8 added 2013 AGM (Ref. New Membership Applications received)

Clarification / Amendment to Rule 12 (Post 2013 AGM~Now in force)

Clarification / Amendment to Rule 14 (2013 AGM~ 2014 AGM)

Clarification / Amendment to Rule 17 (2014 AGM)


Amendment to Rule 7 (2014 AGM) Subscription increase as from 2016 Season


(Amendment to Rule 13 added at 2016 AGM. The only reason to postpone  a match is for inclement weather and not because of the lack of players.


(Amendment to Rule 8 added at 2021 AGM ~ Replacing '11' with 'all existing'. )


(Amendment Change to  Rule 8 added 2022 AGM ~ Replacing 'Unanimous vote' to a 'majority vote' of member clubs)


(8a. Addendum to Rule 8 agreed at 2023 AGM.) Changes to the minimum number of ladies/juniors when fielding only 6 players)


(8c. Addendum to Rule 8 agreed at 2023 AGM.) Change in team numbers.


(12a. Addendum to Rule 12 agreed at 2023 AGM.) Change in the match scoring.


(13a. Addendum to Rule 13 agreed at 2023 AGM.) Rule for non attendance to a match.






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