Reported in the News Letter on July 18, 1955: South African bowls visitors enjoy Ulster weather and television

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By our correspondent

It is not very often that we in Ulster can offer overseas visitors the weather they are accustomed to, but the recent heatwave did come at an appropriate time to welcome the South African bowling team, who have just completed a short stay here, accompanied by some of their wives and daughters.

I joined the women of the party at the Paisley bowling green one glorious day last week, where I found them taking shade under the cover of their umbrellas – they must have come prepared for rain – and we were able to talk while they watched the apparently very leisurely game of bowls being played by their menfolk. All the wives take a most intelligent interest in bowls, as most of them belong to a bowling club at home.

“We really are badly spoiled,” Mrs R Sinclair of Pretoria, and wife of the club’s vice-president, told me, “as it is so easy to get lots of servants in South Africa. It leaves us a lot of time for amusements such as bowls, golf, tennis and swimming.”

They all enjoy the same sort of household gadgets such as we have here – washing machines, electric polishers and cleaners – but they really do envy us the television, which has not come to them yet.

As far as the way we dress and our shops, the visitors thought that there is really little difference between us. Some thought that the price of clothes here was slightly cheaper, but that of food was a little more than they are used to paying.

Their greatest experience was seeing the “Twelfth” procession last Tuesday. None of them will ever forget it – it left a deep impression. One visitor will take back 150 feet of colour film to show to all their friends.