A brief history
Flemington & Kensington Bowling Club — or simply Flem-Ken — was founded in 1892, making it one of the oldest bowling clubs in Melbourne. We have won a large number of important accolades, but have always retained a strong reputation for enjoying our bowls and even being a little irreverent at times.
Flem-Ken is located on the boundary between Flemington and Kensington, a stone's throw from Flemington Racecourse, and is an important part of the local community.
Flem-Ken was a foundation club in the Royal Victorian Bowling Association (RVBA) pennant competition and the honour boards at the club are not only filled with the names of some of Victoria’s best bowlers, but also of some of the most important citizens of the district. You can view the honour boards here.
While we have won many pennants over the years, pride of place is reserved for the two Division 1 pennants the club won in the 1990s. At the time, Division 1 was the top division in Melbourne. Many of the players who were in those teams, and many others, have gone on to represent Victoria and Australia in major competitions, including the Commonwealth Games.
We are extremely proud of our recent achievements, particularly because Flem-Ken is a pokies-free club and chooses not to pay players, as many other top clubs do.
The club today
Flemington-Kensington Bowling Club is a vibrant and energetic place dedicated to promoting and enjoying the sport of lawn bowls in a relaxed and family-friendly environment.
The 2013-14 Saturday pennant competition is now over, but was a fantastic season for the club. The third side went one better than the previous season and was runner-up in Division 8 for all of metropolitan Melbourne. It was the first time in 14 years a Flem-Ken team had made the divisional Grand Final and was cause for much excitement around the club! Our top side plays in Division 2 and has narrowly missed out on promotion to Division 1 in recent years. Promotion is one of our club's goals for this season.
During the winter of 2011 the club's turf greens were replaced with an 11-rink synthetic green. This allowed the club to field sides in the Winter Pennant for the first time in 2012.
Flem-Ken is the undisputed master of winter pennant in Melbourne, in 2014 having won back-to-back titles in Division 1, and having come runner-up in Division 2. The Division 4 side unfortunately missed out on the Grand Final on the last bowl of the semi-final.
Flem-Ken has a strong presence in Melbourne's Tuesday night pennant. Having been absent from this competition for a number of years, we have won numerous flags to add to our collection.
Club championships & tournaments
The club has six internal championships each season — Singles, Minor Singles, Club Pairs, Club Triples, Club Fours and Mixed Pairs — that draw large numbers and are all played over a number of Sundays. Flem-Ken also holds two major tournaments each year that are open to bowlers from any club and carry significant prestige and prize-money.
A community hub
As well as having a strong presence in the pennant bowls competition, Flem-Ken's club rooms serve as a hub for many other local sporting and community groups. The bar is open every day for members, visitors and social bowlers. The club's large function rooms are regularly booked by members of the local community for birthdays and other celebrations.
Flem-Ken also helps to raise significant funds for local charities. The highlight of the fundraising calendar is the Good Friday Royal Children's Hospital bowls day.
The club makes its rooms available free of charge to selected local charities and community groups. Please contact the club if you would like to discuss how the club may be able to help your organisation.