ANDOVER Bowling Club is looking for sponsorship to help pay for new paving stones replacing the 40-year-old slabs surrounding the green.

The uneven paving is causing problems, particularly for the 24 visually-impaired players who only recently became members.

But the club is disappointed that Test Valley Borough Council has refused a grant application to help pay for the work, which will cost between £4,000 and £5,000. The grants panel decided the club had enough assets to meet its costs for the next 12 months.

But vice-president Johnnie Johnston said: "What this means is that because we look after the club and don't waste our money we can't have a grant."

The original green was built in 1913 near the site of what is now the Vigo Road roundabout. When the roundabout was built the club relocated in the 1960s to its current site in the recreation ground.

It was then the paving stones were laid. The club took over the lease of the green for 20 years in the 1990s.

Mr Johnston said: "We can afford to pay for the re-paving but that means that other projects would have to go by the wayside."

They were planning, for example, to extend a pergola to provide more shelter for members. Mr Johnston said the only alternative now was sponsorship.

Test Valley Borough Council community development officer Steve Lincoln said the council had a system of criteria in place to ensure limited funds were distributed fairly and went where they were most needed.

In the case of the Andover Bowling Club the panel decided it had sufficient funds to reinvest in improving facilities for members.

If anyone can help with sponsorship they are asked to contact Mr Johnston on 01264 394519 or 07733012300.