TENNIS ALL SET TO THRIVE
As we welcome a full week of Davis Cup Manchester Group Stage matches to Manchester, tennis across our city is set to thrive long after this impressive, global sporting event departs the AO Arena.
Bringing some of the world’s best tennis players to within touching distance of Mancunians creates a legacy that will inspire the next generation of Murray’s and Norrie’s among our residents whilst cementing Manchester’s status as a globally recognised city of sport.
And as part of the wider strategic event delivery and legacy, additional investment has been made to make improvements to the tennis provision as we continue to grow the city’s community tennis programme and courts.
In Manchester we have been able to make investments at 9 park outdoor tennis sites as part of a £483,095 renovation project taking place across Manchester City Council, funded by the council, UK Government and LTA Tennis Foundation and delivered by the LTA, to refurbish public tennis courts and open up the sport to many more people.
Last weekend, Chorlton Park officially opened with community sessions being delivered free of charge, and Kingswood Park welcomed some very special guests to deliver coaching with appearances from Team GB Davis Cup players Cam Norrie and Neal Skupski
Manchester City Council and the LTA agree partnership to breathe new life into local park tennis courts across the city. The project will see ££483,095 of investment across Manchester’s public parks
This investment will bring our existing park tennis courts, some in poor or unplayable conditions, back to life for the benefit of our local communities. Supporting the overwhelming demand and popularity of tennis with already 20,000+ registered online park tennis users citywide and over 24,000 park tennis courts booked last year.
Park tennis courts are vital in providing opportunities for children and adults to get active, delivering significant physical and mental health and wellbeing benefits to participants. Accessible facilities in parks are particularly critical to opening up the sport to those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds and women and girls.
Through the Parks Tennis Project, we welcome the transformation of 23 courts, providing a significant boost to sporting facilities. The other park venues being renovated are: Blackley Recreation Ground, Cringle Park, David Lewis Recreation Ground (Boggart Hole), Debdale Park, Fog Lane Park, Ladybarn Park and Platt Fields Park.
Alongside this project, we have also repainted 3 sites which include 6 courts at Wythenshawe Park, 4 courts at Alexandra Park and 4 courts at Fletcher Moss Park.
Working with the LTA we will deliver a range of activities, including weekly organised free park tennis sessions through local provider ‘We Do Tennis’ offering both free and chargeable sessions to meet all needs from beginners to experienced players with equipment provided, and Local Tennis Leagues to allow people to compete regularly.
The park venues being renovated are: Blackley Recreation Ground, Chorlton Park, Cringle Park, David Lewis Recreation Ground (Boggart Hole), Debdale Park, Fog Lane Park, Kingswood Park, Ladybarn Park and Platt Fields Park.
The Davis Cup was also great opportunity to link the grass roots / community parks tennis offer with a major sporting event. We had ball crew from two Manchester Schools, Chorlton High and Manchester Communications Academy to support the event, whilst providing a fantastic opportunity and experience for young Mancunians.
The Davis Cup has also ensured that the Manchester Tennis & Football Centre, on the Etihad Campus, benefitted from additional work in preparation for the event
As part of the conversation to bring the event to the city, a review of the courts at the centre recognised that scheduled improvement work could be brought forward to ensure this much-loved and well-used tennis venue plays it’s part as the practice for all four teams competing at the Davis Cup, and that any existing and new club and community players and residents immediately reap the benefits.
The facility is one of strategic importance for tennis development in the city, home to regional, county, school, and community programmes, competitions, and events. The centre delivers a wide ranging and diverse programme to all ages with high usage from Manchester residents. Facilities are now nearing full capacity with significant local demand in tennis that cannot be met from alternative sites across Manchester.
Thanks to the Davis Cup legacy programme, local schools are regularly invited to come to Manchester Tennis & Football Centre, allowing young primary school pupils to receive free coached tennis sessions.
This investment will protect the existing usage and the benefits it generates for the next 10-year period will provide a great platform for the growth of tennis.