A Brief History of Goring Tennis

The club had its inception in the late 1960’s, when a small group of tennis enthusiasts from Goring played on courts which were hired at Upper Basildon and later at Mapledurham Club.

The Club was formally founded in its current location in 1973, when the group using the Mapledurham Club arranged with the Goring Parish Council to contribute towards the improvement of the existing courts on the Sheepcot Recreation Field and to rent them for fixed times from the council on an annual basis. The early members who still play include Terry & Karen W, Brian & Barbara B, Muriel S and Ann D.

This was not a very satisfactory arrangement for the Club, which had some difficulty in building up the membership with these limited facilities. The annual renewal meant that there was little incentive for the club to make any long term investment in improving the facilities.

In 1983 a longer 14 year lease was negotiated with the Parish Council and agreement reached that we could resurface three of the courts and renew the nets and the surrounds at our own expense.

The Club raised the money and in 1984, under the Chairmanship of Brian B, this work was carried out.

Towards the end of that lease, prolonged negotiations took place with the Parish Council for an even longer 25 year lease and permission to add a further court, re-lay all the courts, renew the fencing and add floodlighting for two of the courts. When this was agreed, it took a further two years to raise the funds, including a grant from the Lottery via the Sports Council, which raised the total funding to £86,000.

Frank C acted as Project Manager for the whole operation, which included obtaining planning permission from the SODC, getting the Lottery grant, writing the specifications, letting and supervising the contracts. The new courts were finally available in 1999.

Since the New Courts and the Floodlighting have been available, considerable effort has been made to recruit new members, both seniors and juniors, and coaching has become a significant activity especially for the juniors.

Whilst we now had much improved playing facilities, the then Existing Clubhouse facilities were not ideal, being some distance from the courts and often shared with the footballers. On occasions when men’s and boys’ football games were being played at the same time as the tennis, it was very crowded and often very muddy.

The latest addition to our facilities is the New Clubhouse, which again involved lengthy negotiations with the council and the obtaining of Planning permission from SODC.

The new Club house, situated adjacent to the courts, now provides us with a focal point for our many club activities.



Brief History

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