Success for half-term holiday camp scheme

TENNIS in the Park, Eastbourne’s newest community tennis facility in Gildredge Park, ran a free children’s holiday camp for more than 400 youngsters during half term.

The event was promoted through local schools and was held at the club, run by Gemma and Francis Mackie who said they were delighted with the response.

Gemma said, “All our team are proud but exhausted. It’s been a fantastic week with hundreds of children trying out tennis for the first time. We have had a really successful 12 months since opening last year and it’s great to be able to put something back into the game and the town.”

Stephen Lloyd MP visited the club on one of the busiest days and was immediately put to work, both helping the coaches on court and serving teas and coffees to the parents.

Stephen said, “I really enjoyed my visit to Tennis in the Park. Watching how Francis and all his young coaches work with the kids, teaching them how to play this tremendous game was inspiring. I even got to serve a few balls myself.

“The Lawn Tennis Association invested a substantial amount of money into the club and I know they are absolutely delighted at its growing success.

“Francis and Gemma Mackie run a brilliant facility and the town benefits hugely from their efforts.”

Tennis in the Park has also received strong support from Eastbourne Borough Council. Francis said, “We are

really grateful for all the help we have been given in setting up our community facility. Having spoken to other coaches around the country, it is clear our council is up there with the best.”

As part of its strategy to invest in tennis and health and fitness, Tennis in the Park is now looking to get more adults in involved. It is offering everyone a free tennis assessment and group lesson. It has also taken on a personal fitness trainer who will be offering free of charge training sessions in Gildredge Park.

To find out more call 07837-890429 or visit www.tennisinthepark.orgv