LTA President Visits Northumberland LTA

LTA President Visits Northumberland LTA

(Pictured above at Corbridge Tennis Club)

Northumberland LTA were delighted to host a visit by LTA President, David Rawlinson, over two days on 23rd and 24th August.

Chris Lott, Northumberland Chairman, welcomed David to the Northumberland County Tennis Ground in the heart of Newcastle-upon-Tyne where they were joined for a buffet reception by members of the Northumberland LTA Council, representatives from the Northumberland Seniors Association and members of the Executive Committee of the Northumberland Club.

During the Reception, David made a presentation to Tom Kinloch on his achievement as a National Finalist in the 2022 LTA Awards category for Official of the Year. Tom had been the LTA North region winner of this category.

Following the reception, Chris lott gave a presentation on some of the features of the tennis landscape in the county, the work of the Northumberland Tennis Academy, and on current issues and challenges facing the County, particularly in the aftermath of the recent review of County governance. Mike Smith, Chair of the Northumberland Club, gave an overview of the various facility projects on which the Club were currently working.

Following a tour of the 9 acre Northumberland County Tennis Ground, David rounded off the day with a hit on one of the Ground’s new red clay courts court with Amy Hoburn, Captain of the successful Northumberland Ladies County Cup team who came runners-up in Group 1 at this year’s County Week.

The following day, David visited Riding Mill TC, a small two court club in a rural area in the Tyne Valley. David heard from Club Chair, Steve Gleadhill, about the club’s plans to expand adult and junior membership and their plans to install a lighting system on the courts.

A visit to Corbridge TC followed, a Club adjacent to the River Tyne which was severely affected by Storm Desmond in 2015. David was welcomed by Club Chair Nick Steenberg to the Club’s new clubhouse and viewed some junior coaching on the Club’s 3 outdoor courts.

An afternoon visit followed to Beverley Park TC in the seaside resort of Whitley Bay, where junior coaching and an adult “walking tennis” session were in progress. David, and the Club Chair, Julia Carmichael, played a set against Jane Pledger and Robin Robinson, two of the Club’s veteran stalwarts. Afterwards, David heard about the challenges facing the Club, which is surrounded by residential housing, in gaining planning approval for installation of floodlights.

Following a visit to the historic mouth of the River Tyne and the ancient Tynemouth Priory which overlooks the entrance to the River with its extensive dockyard and shipbuilding facilities, County officials met with David over dinner at which David was presented with a framed print of a watercolour painting of the County Tennis Ground painted 25 years by a well-known Northumbrian artist.

Thanking David for his visit to the County, Chris Lott said that he hoped the visit had helped to raise awareness of the contribution a small County can make to tennis life in the north region.