Historic Musselburgh bowling club bans birthday parties for under-40s

The new clubhouse at Inveresk Bowling and Social Club, where they have said they are not allowing parties for birthdays for those under 40 years old. Pic: Greg Macvean
The new clubhouse at Inveresk Bowling and Social Club, where they have said they are not allowing parties for birthdays for those under 40 years old. Pic: Greg Macvean
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An historic bowling club which dates back to the 19th century has vowed not to hold birthday parties for anyone under the age of 40 in its new clubhouse.

Inveresk Bowling & Social Club has been in existence in Musselburgh since 1888.

However, a fall in membership in recent years saw the club sell its clubhouse to generate funds and build a smaller replacement.

In an application for an alcohol licence for the new clubhouse, which has capacity for about 60 people, the club said it would operate strict guidelines.

They include a pledge only to hold birthday celebrations for people aged 40 and over and avoid loud music or discos because “our members are mainly elderly and prefer quieter music”.

East Lothian Licensing Board, which is being asked to grant the licence, has recently introduced guidelines for social clubs which discourage birthday parties for 18 and 21-year-olds.

However, Inveresk Bowling Club is taking its self-imposed restrictions even further.

In its statement to the board, which meets to decide its application next week, the club said: “We will be entertaining some small birthday, anniversary, retirement or funeral parties but not accepting or having any birthday parties for under-40-year-olds.”

The club says it plays bowls in Scottish and Midlothian competitions and leagues, as well as holding friendly competitions during the season.

It also occasionally holds parties and functions, and hopes to have fundraising and charity events in the future. Applying for an alcohol licence to operate in the clubhouse from 11am to 11pm Monday to Thursday, with a 1am closing time on Fridays and Saturday and midnight on Sundays, the club said that the new building had been built with soundproof windows.

The application has been supported by the board’s licensing standards officer, who said: “This small club previously held a premises licence in respect of a nearby clubhouse, which has since been sold for redevelopment. The new club is well run by a group of dedicated volunteers.”

No objections have been lodged.