The 2020 season has finally got going at Keswick and Braithwaite Tennis Club, with play resuming under social distancing guidelines and a new head coach appointed.
The men’s and ladies’ first teams were both champions of their first divisions last season but are unable to defend their titles this summer as league matches are not being played.
However, spirits are high and the club is offering a 50 per cent cut in the cost of membership for this year only in a bid to attract more players of all ages, says chairwoman Julie Saxton. “The club has been closely following guidelines from the Government and the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association) and we are delighted to say that we are now able to play tennis again.
“Unlike many other sports, we are able to play this safely following social distancing guidelines. Sadly due to Covid-19 we are not currently able to hold our usual club nights twice a week but new members are very welcome. We are a very friendly and sociable club, with many families and all ages playing,” she added.
The club has three grass courts at Fitz Park in Keswick and another three with hard surfaces at Braithwaite, one of which is floodlit. Only two courts are currently open at each venue.
New head coach Gary Payton is both a very experienced player at an international level and an LTA level four performance coach. He was about to visit local schools and set up a new junior coaching programme just before lockdown. However, he is still available for coaching for members following the current Covid-19 guidelines.
At present, the club’s courts have to be booked in order to play with social distancing. Booking is free but only open to members. Half-price membership is as follows: school children £12.50, students/18-25s £25, adults £45 and over 70s £30. Details of how to join, book courts and the club’s safety guidelines and coaching is on its website.