9:00am Saturday 6th November 2010
By Chris Gregory
A STALWART of the Basingstoke bowls scene, who pushed for an indoor facility for the town, has died at the age of 89.
Ernie Ebdon, formerly of Woodroffe Drive on the Berg Estate, died in his sleep at a residential home in Overton on October 11.
Born in London, Mr Ebdon moved to Basingstoke in the 1950s and served an apprenticeship at Thornycroft, before working for British Rail and later in the rent office at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council.
But he will be best known for his involvement in the local bowls scene.
He and his wife Celia played at the old Smiths Industries Bowling Club, on a site now occupied by Pizza Hut on the Brighton Hill Retail Park.
In the 1980s, he helped resurrect an idea to create an indoor bowling green, lobbying the council to resurrect a plan first aired in the 1970s.
At the inaugural meeting of the Loddon Vale Indoor Bowls Club in April 1989, Mr Ebdon was voted club secretary. Three years later the club opened.
He held the position of club secretary, with the exception of two years, until he retired in 2005-06. He was also club president in 1992-93 and was made an honorary life member when he retired.
A keen Chelsea fan, Mr Ebdon also enjoyed travelling to the same hotel in Jersey every year for his holiday, a tradition he carried on after his wife had died.
Club steward Rob Voller said: “He had a heart of gold. He used to organise a lot of stuff for other people.”
His funeral took place on October 20 at St Peter’s Church, in Paddock Road, South Ham, before a get-together at Loddon Vale. Mr Ebdon, who had no children, is survived by his sister.
© Copyright 2001-2013 Newsquest Media Group