Club History

In 1938 a small group of people together with help from the local clergyman in Croft Road had formed St Peters and St Pauls badminton Club which played in the Church room in Queen Street. They then decided they also wanted tennis and the Club started behind the old Victoria Mororworks in Godalming ( where Jubilee house is now).

The Club started with about 30 members and they also used to play on Holloway Hill Recreation Ground hence the name at the time was Rectoria Tennis Club. At this time tennis was really only played by the affluent and the Club helped make tennis available to the less well off working man and woman. At the start there were 2 hard courts and no pavilion, members used a long stone wall adjacent to pound lane to await their turn to play.

Despite many men and women joining the war effort the Club continued throughout this period mainly due to Harvey Bierton one of the early members who was in the Home Guard which was a reserved occupation and therefore he was around. In those days a few friendly matches were arranged and catering was proved in the old guide Hut on the Holloway hill site once the Cricketers had been looked after!

The standard started to improve and after the war the Club relocated to two hard courts in Farncombe Street behind Jacksons bakery. It was not ideal, initially the occupants of the surrounding houses whose gardens adjoined the courts were curious with heads peering over the fence to watch, however this did not last and lost balls remained lost and residents often lit their weekly bonfire on a club night to smoke them out! It was at Jacksons that the first pavilion was acquired ( by my father Ted Holl) the club was allowed to erect it on bakery land  as Mr Jackson was also a member. It was really nothing more than a large shed with no water , light or other facitities but did provide shelter. Apparently this venue was very convenient for The Rising Sun opposite and members would take a shopping bag of bread and cheese to accompany their drinks .

The next final move was to our current Broadwater location where the little hut was re erected with the addition of two very small huts at the back to provide very primitive elson toilet facilities ( how things have changed) . With this move we started with two hard courts and obtained a third in the early sixties. At this time the Club had also set up a junior section and received coaching once a week from the Charterhouse professional coach Eric Hawes

The old pavilion was finally replaced in 1972 thanks to the efforts of many members led by Norman Gravestock and we now had the luxury of showers and proper toilet facilities.

In 1994 we acquired the two public courts adjacent to ours to become a 5 court club .

These were officially opened by my mother Erica Holl one of the founder members and a vice president at the time. By now 3 courts were also floodlit which now allowed evening play throughout the year, this was followed by lighting the other courts as soon as funds allowed.

We now have a much more sophisticated Clubhouse thanks to Chris Early and The Committee which was formally opened in 2015.

We have had a couple of celebrations of the longevity of The Club, our 50th at  The Inn on The Lake and 60th at Loseley. This year we celebrate our 80th.

 

Judith Henderson ( member and Daughter of Erica and Ted Holl)