A CHARITY is striking out as its members get physical.
Sunderland and North Durham Royal Society for the Blind has started its own team in the National Ten Pin Bowling League.
The move offers members to get the chance to take part in a sport they have never thought about trying before, as well as getting some exercise.
Those taking part are helped by an instructor at the bowling alley to ensure they hit their target.
The society has two teams competing in the league, which was funded though the Big Lottery’s Awards for All grant.
The teams, which each consist of two people, take part in the competition once a fortnight at the Ten Pin Bowling Alley in West Sunniside, Sunderland.
Richard Wood, executive officer for the society, said: “We’re delighted that the bowling is taking off in Sunderland. We’ve been looking to get a team in Sunderland for the past 10 years.
“We have two teams that have been officially entered in the summer league which is still going on. They have three more games to play and they’re doing really well.
“They play their games at their bowling alley and then the scores get sent off to the central office.
“The only time they would have to travel for the league is if they made it to the semi-final, which is usually held over a weekend.
“It’s not just the bowling we do to help promote healthy lifestyles for our society – we’ve also joined the North East Visually Impaired Tennis Club and go on walks with about 15 to 20 people and we go out on day trips too.
“We like to let the members decide what they want to do and, if it’s possible, we make it happen.”
June Simmons, an instructor at the bowling alley said: “I’ve been teaching people to bowl for 30 years. I teach all kinds of people, whether they are disabled, old, young or never bowled before. When the society first started bowling they were really shy, but now they have grown in confidence.”