August 4, 2021

LTA President visits Herefordshire & Worcestershire

H&W LTA were delighted to welcome our LTA President Dave Rawlinson and his wife Brenda to our County. 

Despite the dodgy forecast we were able to visit Kempsey Tennis Club, Pershore Tennis Centre and Ross Tennis Centre with some wonderful sunshine. At each venue the courts were full with matches, tournaments or social play taking place. Kempsey was the first club in our county to receive the LTA gate access grant and have it installed. This has helped Kempsey offer easily accessible courts to non- members which has proved very successful. A good number of these have moved on to taking out membership so helping the club out financially – seems like a win win!

Next stop was Pershore. Jan Thomas joined us here and I was delighted to see a more professional photographer than me!! Dave had a tour of the facilities and discussed future projects with Sarah the club’s chairperson. The courts were full with a men’s Summer league match v Worcester and a ladies social morning taking place. Dave presented our ex-chairman Richard Herriman his LTA Meritorious Award – not quite Wimbledon but a good second choice! Richard has given 40 years to the county including 19 years as chairman. Richard was delighted to receive this award and it looks like it will have a home on his mantelpiece next to the one his wife Penny received 4 years ago.!!

With the sun still shining we made our way to Herefordshire for our final visit of the day at Ross Tennis Centre. Here, a men’s and women’s tournament was taking place and Dave presented the prizes. He also took on 2 youngsters, Jack and Noah, on a mini tennis grass court – still not sure who won!  I must thank June Savidge for some lovely photos taken at Ross

Monday started at Manor Park with a presentation from Richard Savory. His company are working on the City of Tennis project which has support from the LTA through the Transforming Tennis Together Project. 

We then went to Barnt Green Sports Club, our current Club of the Year, where we had an interesting tour of the facilities.  Ian King our H&WLTA President and an Honorary member of the club joined us for this visit. There is some amazing history at the club and more being made with Dan Evans becoming an Honorary member.  Dave presented the Club of the Year certificate to Faye & Lesley Edwards and he also presented the Coach of the Year to Chris Davis.  Following the presentations, we were all indulged with amazing cakes provided by the social players – we did have a good go at trying them all between us and we left feeling they could have a Great Bake Off Competition.

Last stop, Redditch Tennis Club, which is part of the Redditch Community Sports & Social Club. A junior competition was running and we were shown around all the sections including….. wait for it…… The Pigeon Club!  They have a great community centre where we just missed the end of the Bingo session, but Dave did manage to have a go at pulling a pint – we think the verdict was ‘could have done better’ but after 30 mins it just about looked like a pint.

Ed Bradford, H&W Chairman and I enjoyed taking Dave and Brenda around the county and we were all made to feel most welcome at all the clubs. We know how hard all you volunteers work in our venues and we really appreciated seeing you all being so proud and enthusiastic about your clubs. Dave and Brenda also thoroughly enjoyed their 2 days with us and Brenda commented on how much was going on at the clubs which they don’t always get to see. They had already done 2 days in Shropshire so even though they may have been tired they showed appreciation and were really positive about every part of their visit. So many thanks to you all. 

Jo Marks
H&W LTA Councillor

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