Refurbished courts are opened after LTA grant

Tennis players prepare for action at Rutland Sports Park's brand new courts.
Tennis players prepare for action at Rutland Sports Park's brand new courts.

Rutland Sports Park in Ilkeston is now set for tennis all year round after unveiling brand new outdoor facilities at the weekend.

The Sports Park has refurbished its outdoor facilities in order to match its popular indoor courts and offer the community a great facility for both the winter and summer seasons.

The work at Rutland Sports Park was made possible thanks to a grant from the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) totalling £63,083, with support from Sport England, with the club contributing the remaining £21,027 towards the cost of the development.

The club was awarded the funding at the start of the year, and used it to reconstruct four macadam courts at the popular site.

Stanton Tennis Club, who currently play their winter competitions at the park’s indoor tennis centre, will now make the venue their home in addition to making provision for some public access.

Paul Sheard, the LTA tennis development manager for Derbyshire, said: “We are delighted that to have finally completed the project to renovate the outdoor courts at Rutland Sports Park.

“We recognised a number of years ago the huge potential that exists at the site with the indoor tennis centre but needed to bring the outdoor courts back to good condition to make it a flourishing overall venue.

“Our vision has always been to provide opportunities for the whole community to get involved in tennis and the newly-renovated courts will help us try to increase participation in the area.

“I would like to thank club members Mark Hancock and Tony Buck for all the hard work they have put into the project. We’ve had a few setbacks along the way but we’ve now got some quality outdoor tennis courts and a vibrant tennis club for the people of Ilkeston.”

The funding has been provided as part of British Tennis’ facilities strategy which has received substantial investment from Sport England.

This makes an important contribution to the drive to increase tennis opportunities for people to participate, compete and get access to coaching at all levels of the game in communities nationwide.

Richard Lewis, Sport England’s chairman, said: “It’s vital that public funding for sport goes into facilities that meet the highest standards, are welcoming, and cater for everyone. That’s how we’re going to get more people using them every day.

“The new facilities at Rutland Sports Park will offer even more accessibility for its members and encourage more people from the local community to get involved in the sport.”

The LTA makes financial support available through its resources and ensures investments will deliver the maximum return for British tennis through more people playing and across Britain.

There will be an increase in the number and standard of facilities nationwide which will be available to the whole community at a reasonable, affordable cost.

To find a playing partner, a local court or coach, register at www.allplaytennis.com