As you know one of our members is Graham
Pilbrow. Graham has achieved a great deal at our Club and in
external Competitions. This, however, is about his Dad, Jack.
Jack started bowling as a provisional member
at the Muswell Hill Bowling Club (Founded in 1901), Middlesex as
a 16 year old in 1932. He became a full member in 1934. When
Jack started bowling his father, Walter, bought him a brand new
set of Thomas Taylor Lignum bowls. He bowled with the same set
all his career.
His record at Muswell Hill is as follows:
Winner Hastings Open Pairs 1934 Winner Club
Singles Championship 1934 & 1935, Runner Up 1938
Winner Club Handicap Singles 1934, 1935,
1936, 1937 & 1938 Winner Pairs 1936, Runner Up 1937
Winner Paddington Open Pairs ‘Morning Post
Cup’ 1935 & 1938
Semi Finalist Paddington Open Pairs 1935
Middlesex ‘Middleton Cup’ player 1935, 1936, 1937 & 1938
Runner Up in Hastings Open Rink Tournament
1936 Winner Middlesex County Singles 1937
Semi Finalist E B A Singles 1937 Runner Up
Hastings Open Singles 1938
Winner Hastings Open Triples 1937 Winner
Club Jubilee Cup Singles 1937
England International 1938/39 (at age 23 – the youngest player
to represent England)
Jack also played in the International Series in 1939, when his
promising England career was interrupted by World War Two.
London & Southern Counties Bowling Association (Founded 1895)
Winner – Gold Badge 1938
(to be competed for by one representative, preferably the Club
Champion, from each affiliated Club every year).
Indoor – Paddington I B C
Winner Paddington Indoor Club Championship
1936 & 1937, Runner Up 1938
Winner Paddington Indoor Handicap Singles
Runner Up Paddington Indoor Pairs
Winner Paddington Indoor Open Rink
Tournament 1937, Runner Up 1936
Member of the Paddington team runners up
‘Penny’ Cup for E B A (Indoor Section) Club Championship 1937
Jack played at West Harrow B C in the early
1960’s & played in the Middleton Cup.
Jack moved to Epsom Bowling Club 1975. He
won the Men’s Handicap Singles in 1981 & was Runner Up in the
Men’s Singles Championship in 1984. He was also Runner Up in
the Men’s Triples in 1980.
In 1980 Jack was elected Club Secretary. He
remained in office until 1995.
In 1980 Jack won the Surrey County Bowling Association
Secretaries Trophy at the age of 76.
On the 4th March 1986 at a Committee Meeting
Jack outlined a Competition aimed at raising Club funds which
would involve 12 other Clubs each providing one rink to play
against Epsom B C. This went ahead from 1986 to 1997 when
Graham took over. It became known as ‘The Event’. (you can
view details of this Competition by going to ‘Results’ then ‘The
Event’). The Competition was discontinued after the 2012 season.
Sadly Jack died in 1998.
Jack’s wife Bobby was also a member of Epsom
Bowling Club and there is a very interesting story involving
The article below appeared in the Daily Mail
on 19th December 1946. (If you type
‘Rooftop Dakota’ in Google you will see the full report &
photographs of the plane on the roof – several links).
The Rooftop Dakota
On 19th December 1946, a Dakota plane crashed onto the roof of a
house in Angus Drive, near Northholt Aerodrome in Middlesex...
Over the past
3 weeks, Home Truths has followed the story of the Rooftop
Dakota. First Irene Zigmund, whose house it was, told us
of the incredible escape of herself and her 4 month old son
David, who was asleep in his cot upstairs when the plane landed
on the house. Next the air hostess, Bobby Pilbrow,
and the son of one of the passengers on the plane, John
Livingston, got in touch with us, to tell us their bit of the
Dakota Sheared off five house tops
One of the most remarkable escape stories in aviation comes from
Ruislip (Middlesex) on Thursday December 19th 1946.
This story involved Bobbie Pilbrow (Graham’s mum).
A Glasgow bound Dakota pancaked into a housetop after tearing
the roofs off four houses. No one was seriously injured. The
crash occurred in a blinding snow storm shortly after the plane
took off from Northolt airport.
Rescue crews ran up ladders to cut a hole in the fuselage, and
the 5 occupants of the ‘plane (including Bobbie Pilbrow)
climbed through the house to walk downstairs to safety.
The following article appeared in the Daily Mail on 20th
By William Mattinson, Daily Mail Reporter
I met Mr. Joe Levene yesterday as we were both about to alight
from a No. 158 bus at Angus-drive, Ruislip, Middlesex, where a
Railway Air Services Dakota had crashed on a pair of
semi-detached houses. "Plane crash?" echoed Mr. Levene. He
looked towards Angus-drive, and together we saw the nightmarish
picture of a plane apparently frozen in mid-air, its nose and
wings hidden by the housetops.
Suddenly Mr. Levene stopped and muttered to himself: "It's our
house". The plane was at rest on the roof of No. 46, and Mr.
Levene ran inside. "It's our new home," he gulped when he came
out. "We're going to get married on Sunday." "My father-in-law
phoned me at work and said he'd been told there was a slight
leak in the house. I suppose they wanted to break it to me
"My fiancée, Miss Fay (Libby) Tregor, is out shopping, trying to
get a few more blankets now they're off the dockets. She'll be
coming over here." Inside the new utility furniture was
smothered in plaster. A new electric fire stood in the front
garden. "We were going to Switzerland for our honeymoon on
Monday," said Mr. Levene. "I'd better call it off." When Miss
Tregor returned she looked at the wreck and wept. Mrs. Florence
Zigmond, of 44, Angus-drive, whose home was also damaged, was
out in the road buying
fish when the plane hit the two semi-detached houses obliquely,
swung violently round, and pushed the roof
off her house. One wing cut into the tiles 18in. above the small
bedroom where David, her four-and-a- half-month-old baby, was
sleeping. The windows of the room were not even cracked. Mrs.
Zigmond screamed: "Save my baby," and the fish salesman dashed
into the house and brought David to safety. The plane, a
freighter, taxied across Northolt airfield in the snow at 11.50
a.m. with four crew and one passenger. It failed to rise,
skimmed across the railway line, and brushed heavily through a
tree-top. The nose dipped, but
Captain W. J. Johnson, the pilot, pulled it up. With 500 gallons
of petrol aboard the machine careered across the
fields without gaining sufficient height to clear the houses in
Onlookers were certain all in her must be killed. Yet all
escaped from a crash at 150 miles an hour with slight injuries.
Hope that this article is of