Bowling them over

Picture Martin Bostock.'B lind bowler Natalie Shaw of Cleveleys, whose daughter Marcia is also blind and deaf and is also taking part in bowling and has just won a junior championship.

Picture Martin Bostock.'B lind bowler Natalie Shaw of Cleveleys, whose daughter Marcia is also blind and deaf and is also taking part in bowling and has just won a junior championship.

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LIKE mother, like daughter.

Marcia Shaw is definitely following in her mum Natalie’s footsteps.

The 10-year-old, from Cleveleys, is already on track to becoming a national bowling champion, just like her mum.

She recently became the British Blind Sports Tenpin Junior League 2010/11 Winner.

Meanwhile, her mum, 38, has raised around half of the money she needs to fund her experience of representing Great Britain at the fourth IBSA (International Blind Sport Association) World Blind Tenpin Bowling Championships 2011 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in October.

Natalie has clocked up her fair share of awards, medals and trophies for British Blind Sports and has represented Lancashire in the annual Irish Blind Sports May Games in Dublin for the last four years.

She needs at least £2,000 towards kit, travel and accommodation to take part in the October games and compete against teams from Finland, China and Japan.

So far, she has managed to pull together £900 through various fundraising events.

And Natalie, whose husband Andy is also registered blind, is delighted Marcia seems to also have the bowling bug.

The Manor Beach County Primary pupil is partially-sighted, deaf and suffers from arthritis.

Natalie said: “Marcia loves bowling. She was about four or five when she started and it was definitely because of me.

“She really enjoys it and seems to have a natural ability.

“She didn’t know she had been named the league winner, until she was presented with the trophy and everything.

“She couldn’t believe it and we were really pleased and proud of course.

“She’s already looking forward to the next season.”

Marcia not only loves bowling, she also enjoys going to Girl Guides, drawing, writing stories and acting classes on Saturday mornings with the Paul Nicholas school of acting at Thornton.

She said: “Bowling is fun, it’s enjoyable, you get to meet people. I like it a lot.

“I think I’m probably good at it because both my mum and dad are too.

“I hope one day I can be as successful at it as my mum.”

Natalie has been busy trying to get the funds together for her forthcoming trip to Malaysia. She will only be able to compete in the championships if she has managed to raise all the money she needs.

She has been out collecting, holding fundraising events and selling jewellery at a charity stall – which, remarkably, she manages to make herself.

The family have not had it easy.

They lost Marcia’s little sister Olivia at the age of 16 weeks, when Marcia was two. Marcia was distraught.

Natalie has gradually lost what little sight she had over time, including losing the sensation of colour – something she found really tough.

And because there is no tenpin bowling centre locally, Natalie has to make a round-trip to Preston’s Lakeside Superbowl, via one bus, one train and one taxi each way, £25 a time, to train weekly – and that’s excluding costs racked up by each game.

But none of that puts Natalie or Marcia off.

And husband Andy – who, with Natalie, is a member of Wyre Wizards Sports Club – has also been bowling for eight years and is a champion-level bowler.

Log on to www.justgiving.com/NatalieMShaw or call 07920 099291.