The Levin Women's Bowling Club has been losing members over recent years and though the club is financially healthy, at this year's AGM its remaining members decided to dissolve their club.
"It was the best little club in town, it is sad to see it go."
It is the second bowling club to close its doors in the last year.
The origins of the club go all the way back to 1942, when on June 5 its first ever committee meeting was held at the home of then president Mrs Maud Lett, previously known as Mrs Clark, who donated the land on Salisbury St for the RSA Bowling Club, which was dissolved last year.
"In our heyday we had 86 members," said current president Carrell Knight, who has been a member for 37 years.
"Sixty-four people can play on our green. In fact, we had so many wanting to play that they had to go into a ballot to decide their turns."
Interest in the club has been waning for a while as times change and there is so much more for people to do.
"New generations have different expectations. We just played bowls and made cups of tea and warmed sausage rolls. Nowadays they want to have a drink at the bar and demand social activities."
The club tried to talk the now-defunct RSA Bowling Club into merging a few years ago, to no avail.
"They just made it too hard. Bowling New Zealand had been urging clubs for some time to amalgamate, to keep the sport alive locally, and we did try."
There is a history of the two clubs working together, though. Not only was Mrs Maud Lett, the women's club president, the RSA members helped put up the women's bowling green, according to members.
The women's bowling club leases the land from the council, but owns the timber clubhouse that they had built. Beside it sits a stone building, that dates from early in the last century.
"There was a swimming pool, where the clubhouse sits, and its disappearance caused a bit of controversy at the time."
Two legal opinions obtained at that time stated that giving the land to the women's bowling club, for a new clubhouse, was illegal. The Thompson House Memorial Cultural Centre's secretary T Wardle called the plan an annexation in a letter of protest to the borough council.
He even publicly threatened to resign if the council did not back down. Not consulting with the centre about the plans was part of the complaint. The grounds surrounding Thompson are public gardens and giving part of it to someone else undoes that and creates a precedent, it was argued.
In July 1955 the then Levin Borough Council made an attempt to boot the ladies off their green, because "the space should be used for the purpose for which it was given".
Though two years were allowed for the relocation and every assistance promised to find them a new home. Nothing came of this plan either.
Prior to 1999 the council tended to the grounds but a new parks manager decided it was too expensive and suggested turning the green into a sunken rose garden.
"In 2001/2 we got our own greenkeeper, for which we paid between $6000-$7000. The council, many past mayors had been supportive of the club, reimbursed half of that.
The club sits in a corner of historical significance, beside Thompson House and the Cenotaph, a rustic corner with beautiful grounds. The surrounding trees tended to be thirsty at times, soaking up a lot of water from the bowling green.
The club has had the services of Central Levin Bowling's greenkeeper, who has been looking after their green for some years. The club members tended to the gardens for years but in recent times have resorted to employing someone to do this for them.
Over the years there have been further talks about moving to other venues such as Western Park and Playford Park, but the club remained at Bath St.
The club began on Salisbury St on a small green where now a retirement village sits. The Bath St location became available in 1943. First named Levin Women's, in 1946 that was changed to Horowhenua Ladies and though this was later reversed back to Levin's Women's, the club remained knows as Ladies.
The stone cottage in the grounds was their first club room. In 1975 the current club rooms were built, on top of the Thompson House swimming pool. An extension was added in 1984.
The club catered for women only and has been a place of pleasure for many.
"We did not have the bitching that goes on in other clubs. Everyone worked together. We looked after each other, though we were also very competitive," Knight said.
While council said it has no plans for the bowling green yet, the women's bowling club members fear it may become a carpark to benefit the Arts Centre.
A meeting will soon be held with the club to determine what should happen to the club rooms.
"According to the lease, we understand, this building must be removed," said Mrs Knight.
It is hoped that remaining members of the club will be able to keep going as a social club.
The final playing day for the Women's Bowling Club will be May 9.
"The executive committee will wind up the club, deregister its incorporated society and sell any equipment. Members will be in charge of emptying out the building.
"We are still looking for a home for any historical things, such as a winner's boards. We actually get inquiries every now and then from people who want to know whether their mum, and grandmother is named on one of those."