There is one change to the Laws this year. In summary, the change removes the requirement to have rings engraved on the non-bias side of the bowl. This change allows manufacturers to use larger logos and other identifying marks. Bowls Canada Bounlingrin has prepared a memo that includes the text of all changes that can be read here under the heading "Amendments". I am reproducing the text here:
D2 Bias side of a bowl: the side of the bowl that is the more rounded of the two sides, which is identified by the small grooved rings surrounding its centre.
52.1.3 Each set of bowls can carry a player’s individual emblem, logo or engraving as a distinguishing mark on both sides of every bowl.
126.96.36.199 All bowls belonging to players within a team or side must have these markings on them and the markings must all be the same design and colour. However, players may use markings which are different in size from those used by other players in their team or side where this is necessary due to differences in the sizes of either the manufacturers’ rings or distinguishing marks on the bowls. (This section refers to the provision of adhesive labels to identify a team's bowls at some competitions, not the engraved markings on either side of the bowl.)
53.1 Licensed Manufacturers and Licensed Testers are entitled to imprint the registered World Bowls Stamp on the bias side of bowls. Imprints on the running surfaces of bowls must be avoided wherever possible.
We have received a few questions about the re-spotting of the jack when it has been knocked out of play. The jack will only be placed at the 2-metre mark if the jack, while in motion passes out of the rink on the right or left side, passes over the bank, or comes to rest in a hollow in the face of the bank. In any other situation where an end must be replayed, the end will still be replayed.
While in motion is an important phrase. A jack is only in motion if it has been legally disturbed. So a jack that is hit by a rebounding non-toucher is not in motion, nor is a jack that has been disturbed by someone's foot or any other outside force (this list is not exhaustive).
The re-spot rule only covers a small number of situations in the Laws, but they are the most common situations we experience on the greens.
As previously announced, we are bringing our practices in line with World Bowls. Full details ate available at the link in the side bar, but we have prepared a memo that summarizes some of the biggest differences. You can view that here
We've uploaded a number of useful forms and documents for umpires on the umpiring page. These forms include: