With the spread of Covid-19 (Coronavirus) and the request by the Government to avoid social gatherings, coupled with the vulnerability of many of our competitors, Chippenham Lions have taken the difficult decision to cancel The Bob Cook Games for 2020.

We look forward to 2021 and leave you with memories of 2019.




District Governor, Jarvis McDonald presents a gold to Sally the guide dog for leading partially sighted competitor, Donna Livoti to victory


The Bob Cook Games took place at Swindon on 11th August. Named after the late Charter President of the Lions’ Club of Chippenham, the games take place every year on the second Sunday of August at the Athletics Track at Swindon’s County Ground Sports Complex.

We had been watching the weather report for a few days and it did not look good…  After gales on the Friday and Saturday the wind eased to moderate breeze and the decision was taken to go ahead with the event. Nonetheless, the day remained generally dull and cool throughout with the odd shower in the afternoon, but we did not allow this to dampen our spirits; oh no …

This was the first time we had run the games since redistricting and, whilst Chippenham is now in the new 105SC district, we were mindful of how important this day is to so many competitors from the old 105W district and how much they look forward to it from year to year. For that reason we were pleased to welcome along competitors and Lions clubs from the old 105W along with District Governors Jarvis McDonald from 105SC and Ian Gott from 105CW.

All in all, we had about 195 entrants from 14 clubs along with their helpers. But as well as everything else, the day also brings together Lions from clubs throughout the various districts and it’s a great opportunity to renew friendships and reinforce the bond.  

For Chippenham ladies, the day started at the crack of dawn with rolls and butter and many other ingredients as they started to assemble 400 lunch packs to feed contestants and helpers. Back at the sports arena, Lions from many clubs were also working with canvas, poles, tables and chairs to create ‘pop-up city’ to house all of those who would be arriving for the day. By 9:30 everything was pretty much in place and Highworth and District Lions fed the crew with breakfast butties.

Contestants and their helpers started to appear and the tents were full when the games were formally opened at 10:25 by Chippenham President, Ian Gilbert and District Governor, Jarvis McDonald who wished everyone good fortune and great enjoyment in taking part.

Both track and field events were contested strongly with large entries for field events such as the discus, javelin, shot-put and welly waggling whilst others chose to try their hand at the gentle of sport of boules.

The first event took place immediately after the opening and competition continued until about 4:00 with a short break for lunch.

Whilst medals were awarded for success in every event, two major trophies are awarded to the lady and the gentleman who were judged to best represent the games’ true sprit of determination against the odds. This year the ‘The Joy Cook’ memorial trophy went to Amanda Zachary (Stepping Stones) and was awarded by Julie Hamlen; daughter of the late Joy Cook and wife of Chippenham Lion, Norman. For the gentlemen, a trophy was awarded in memory of a late Chippenham member and tireless supporter and worker for the games; Ivor Bull.  A trophy in his honour was awarded by District Governor, Jarvis to John Stafford (Cardiff).

At lunchtime we were fortunate to be entertained by the Britannia Majorettes and Miniettes of Swindon who are aged between 6 and 16 and who introduced colour and music to give us a display of faultless precision marching and drumming. We are always pleased to have them along and this year they introduced cowboy dancing to their repertoire and we thank them greatly for their support.

The day ended with group photographs and the departure of the athletes; happy, but tired and festooned in medals.  The Lions then set about the task of breaking camp and the dispersal of ‘pop-up city’. Hundreds of chairs and tens of tables plus tents, large and small, were all returned to storage and ready for use next year.

We are also grateful, once again, for the assistance of Atlantic College staff, Swindon Harriers and UKA for their supervision and to The Croft Leisure Centre for their valuable assistance.

As usual, most of the organisation of the day was provided by Chippenham with particular help from Highworth and District Lions Club, however, financial support and manpower is provided by many clubs. Club duties ranged from marshalling events, ensuring that competitors got to the start of their event in time and prompting winners to collect their medals etc. Chippenham Lions would like to thank all those who took part or helped on the day.  Their help is essential to the success of the games.

All helpers will take back their own memories of the games, but I shall recall the tremendous determination shown by all competitors and the pleasure and pride they gained as they were presented with their medals.

The games are always on the lookout to involve more competitors and more Lions’ Clubs so if your club would like to be there, then why not approach a Disability Club in your area.

Next year’s games will be held on 9th August 2020.  Put it in your diary now and plan to be there for another great day.

...  Martin Horton


The physical preparations started on the Saturday at the Chippenham Lions garages when the van was loaded with tents and other equipment. We remind ourselves that Highworth and District must also be loading with tables and chairs at much the same time


Chippenham caterers prepare 400 lunches in the early morning for competitors and helpers


The tents are erected in early morning sunshine


Highworth and District Lions supplied the games with tables and chairs to fill the tents


After the preparations and time for a bite - Highworth and District supply all the many helpers with breakfast


The competitors start arriving from 10 am


The tents fill up and we are ready to roll


The games are officially opened by Chippenham Lion President Ian Gilbert and DG, 105SC Jarvis McDonald


The presentation Team - DG Jarvis McDonald, PDG Tony Buchan in his role as Physical & Learning Disabilities Officer, PDG Surinder Malhotra and DG 105CW Ian Gott


A cuddly lion from Glantawe greets Lara Cooper and Susan Eaglestone both from Chippenham Gateway


Tola Adeko from Cocklebury Farmhouse shows determination on the track


Ffion Roberts from Trinity and Carlene Taylor from Open Door put great determination into their performance


David Boote from Open Door and Mark Whittingham from Stepping Stones celebrate victory in their own ways


Nicholas Flatt from Open Door and Tola Adeko from Cocklebury Farmhouse battle it out on the track


A highly competitive group in the 400 metres


Anita Davies from Glentawe prepares to launch the javelin


James Savory from Cardiff throws the ‘discus’


Mark Findley from Open Door tosses the welly


The Britannia Majorettes and Miniettes payed us a lunchtime visit and added colour to the day


This year the girls had added a cowboy dance routine to their repertoire


PDG Steve Petty supervises a gentle game of boule between Keith Shaw and Richard Taylor, both of Penybont Gateway


Geoff Smith of Enterprise Club takes part in the wheelchair slalom


Byron and Betty control events from the commentary box


DG, Ian Gott presents a silver to Anthony Bishop of Cocklebury Farmhouse


DG, Jarvis awards a gold to Anita Davies from Glantawe


PDG, Surinder Malhotra awards a gold to James Cosgrove of Open Door


‘The Joy Cook’ memorial trophy went to Amanda Zachary from Stepping Stones and was awarded by Julie Hamlen; daughter of the late Joy Cook and wife of Chippenham Lion, Norman


A trophy in memory of a late Chippenham member and tireless supporter and worker for the games; Ivor Bull, was awarded by DG, Jarvis to John Stafford of Cardiff


 Enterprise Club competitors pose with their medals for the group photo at the end


Cocklebury Farm competitors pose with their medals for the group photo at the end


A collection of shirt badges representative of the many Lions clubs who come together to help with this important event


Martin Horton, webmaster:

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