April 2017 Newsletter

Welcome… to the latest newsletter. Since the last newsletter, we have completed the winter league season (where we had some success – see below) and have already started on the very busy summer one. There are developments on court improvements/maintenance and other, related matters, plus information on upcoming events – see details below.

Breaking news…. The club tournament will be earlier this year with finals day, combined with a Club Social, at the end of July. Ernie will be putting up sign-up forms this week so make sure you get your names down. Remember to include your most convenient contact, (either mobile or email) to facilitate arranging matches.

The Courts

Given the huge costs involved, we cannot upgrade the acrylic courts or convert 2 other courts to artificial clay/grass now. Instead, the Committee intend now to concentrate on upgrading the bottom 4 courts to improve their condition and prolong their life. When this work is completed the Club will have 6 good-quality courts. We will also be replacing the chain link fencing at either end of courts 1 and 2.

Fund raising/Future Events

The coffee and book “clubs” continue to do well (but please, no more donated books for a while). The 100 Club is also doing quite well as a money earner for the Club but we really need some new contributors. The cost is only £48 a year (less than a £1 a week) and there are 2 prizes each month of £30 and £15. See Bernie, our Treasurer, and sign up today! The first American tournament of the year will take place on Monday 1st May. All adult members welcome plus advanced juniors (ie those that play in teams). There will be prizes for the leading man & lady. On Saturday 13th May the Club will be running one of the LTA’s Great British Tennis invitation days. These are designed to encourage more people – adults & juniors – to take up the sport. Ernie will be running the event with support from the Committee but all help will be welcome! If you are prepared to help, please contact Ernie.

Committee work and ClubSpark

Your Committee meets on a regular basis to ensure the Club is run smoothly. Without all the hard work that goes on behind the scenes, we would have no fixtures, nobody to collect/pay monies and record membership details, no teams organised, no Wimbledon ballot, no social events – the list is almost endless. To this end, the Club have started using a software tool called ClubSpark. This is designed to make Club admin. much easier – particularly for the Treasurer (Bernie Adams) and Membership Secretary (Barbara Durkin). There have been a few teething problems but these are being ironed out. Our aim is to run all our admin. through ClubSpark from April 2018. Some members have questioned the security of the site. Please be assured that it is as safe as anything on-line can be these days. Your data is not passed on to any third parties and paying your membership fee through the system is just like buying any other product through the Internet. The LTA would not be supporting this if it were not safe. There will be some vacancies on the Committee next year when the Club will need a new Chairman and Vice-Chairman. Please let me know if you wish to be considered for either post. No previous experience necessary and you will be given full training!

Some news of Club success on court….

Our Mens Vets I Teams reached the final of North Kent Division IV and there beat Chipstead 4- 0. This meant a winning season of 56 sets to 0 – a remarkable record. However, the team inadvertently fell foul of an arcane rule on selection which meant the final result was reversed. Bad luck chaps for what was a sorry ending to the season for the team. Better news for the Men’s Vets Over60s team who won their league Division 3. Well done to everyone who represented the Club in those matches.

Finally, a reminder to please take all your rubbish home with you and not leave any debris on the courts. The court tidy-up gang are fed up with picking up drinks bottles, paper cups, ring pulls, sweet/crisp packets etc. Bin it when you come off court please!

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