New tennis club set to be served up in Reepham

The new Reepham Tennis Club will be launched later this year thanks to a dedicated group of local residents and enthusiastic players.

Led by Tony Gurney-Read, the club's newly appointed chairman, the new tennis club has secured more than �50,000 of national and local funding to completely refurbish the old tennis courts at Stimpson's Piece.

The new club has secured �45,762 of Olympic legacy funding from Sport England's Inspired Facilities Fund, part of the �135 million Places People Play legacy programme that is extending the reach of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games into communities across the country.

Tony Gurney-Read, said: 'We are delighted to secure the first Inspired Facilities grant, which will enable us to upgrade the current premises to a multisport facility, enabling tennis, football and netball to be played again in Reepham. It is the cornerstone of our strategy to have a club which integrates itself into the local community for the 2012 Olympics' legacy.'

The club has also secured a �10,000 Community Grant from Broadland District Council and �1,000 from the NLTA.

Work to redevelop the two disused courts will begin in April and as well as resurfacing the existing courts, the development plan includes new fencing, a patio area with seating for spectators and a clubhouse. The floodlights will also be upgraded to allow members to play at all times of the year. It is hoped that the new club will be open and operational by May.

Gurney-Read added: 'There has already been tremendous support for this new tennis facility and several people have put their names forward for membership. We are affiliated to the National Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) and can be found on their website. I hope the club will be a place that everyone in the community feels welcome to come along to, and have a go.'

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Membership of the tennis club will be open to everyone and all members of the local community are invited to get in touch and register their interest in playing – regardless of age or ability. Local tennis coach, Murray Parfitt, will establish a coaching programme for adults and juniors and lead the innovative sports programme to include free coaching sessions and taster events funded by the NLTA. Eventually it is hoped that the club will be able to field teams to compete in Norfolk tennis leagues.

Other sports clubs in Reepham are also hoping to make use of the new multisport surface too. The netball club will continue to meet at the tennis club and Reepham Town Football Club have also expressed an interest in using the courts for training.

For more details visit, email or call Tony Gurney-Read on 01603 873297.