Founded May 1913
The "South Ashfield Bowling Club" was formed in May 1913 with its first president being William Waters, who died very soon after. Herbert Pratten, then the Ashfield Mayor, and the prime mover in the acquisition of the land that enabled the formation of the club, became President and drove the club's development. Early in 1915 work began on a small fibro structure that remained the clubhouse until the mid 1930s.
In 1921 the club was renamed "Pratten Park Bowling Club" recognising the location within the Pratten Park sporting precinct that had been named in honour of Herbert E. Pratten.
In 1930 the first women’s club was founded and it enjoyed success in the interclub competitions but it was closed down due to the men needing all available space and time on the greens for their growing membership. (Can you imagine that happening today?) The second women’s club was formed in 1969, and remains a core part of the club, so much so that the committee last year (2013) elected June Bowden a life member, the first female life of any NSW Bowling club.
Over the last ten years, as Bowls lost its allure and membership declined, indeed many clubs have disappeared, the club has needed to find alternate means of income. It has successfully turned itself into a Community club, hosting a variety of events as varied as barefoot and twilight bowls, private parties, Music Festivals, and has become the headquarters of the Canterbury District Soccer Association. Our new cafe, 'The Pratto' is a joint venture with Metro Assist which provides an avenue for refugees and migrants to acquire cooking and hospitality skills, while supporting their pathway to employment.
The centenary function in 2013 was graced by the presence and good wishes of many community and political figures, including notably the Governor, Marie Bashir.
Long may the club continue to serve the community.