You can now play tennis in Ferndown after the sun goes down – it’s official!
The Mayor of Ferndown, Cllr Mike Parkes, cut the ribbon and pressed the remote control to bathe the courts in light on the evening of 20 November to a round of applause from members of the tennis club.
Chairperson Lynn Chong said, “It has long been a dream of Ferndown Tennis Club to have permanent floodlights.”
She explained that the bid for £39,765 from Sport England had been submitted twice before being granted and thanked King George V Playing Fields (KGV) Charity for supporting the bids and putting so much work into the applications, in particular former town clerk, Ian Jones. A grant of £15,300 from KGV also helped make the floodlights possible as well as a contribution from Ferndown Tennis Club, West Moors Tennis Club and Synergy Housing. The ‘tennis for everyone’ floodlights will help the club considerably with expanding its busy programme to offer year round, low-cost accessible tennis-based activities to the local community.
Lyn said, “Our mini and junior players can now play twelve months a year so they don’t drift away in the winter months and have to be recruited again the following year.” She explained that the Head Coach Chris Biddle had been very patient in waiting for the floodlights to be installed. He has already built up evening classes by borrowing portable floodlights for the juniors and minis, “and he runs adult classes into the evening, including cardio fitness and rusty racquets,” added Lynn. “It is the aim of the club to offer pay and play in the evening too.”
The mayor made his way between a ‘guard of honour’ made by tennis club members before cutting the ribbon. He said, “It is tremendous that so many have put the effort into achieving the installation of the floodlights, which now offer tennis to all ages in the community throughout the whole year.”
Ferndown Tennis Club is situated at King George V Pavilion, Peter Grant Way, Ferndown. www.ferndowntennisclub.org.uk