Club Spotlight: 100 years of Stewarton Tennis Club
• 3 MINUTE READ
Stewarton Tennis Club has been home to avid Ayrshire tennis goers since 1923 and celebrated its centenary in October.
Home to 166 members - 86 juniors and 80 adults – the club has three all-weather artificial grass courts which were resurfaced in 2020 with the latest shorter pile carpet. The courts are complemented by LED floodlighting, allowing play around the clock, a necessity at this time of year due to the long Scottish winter nights.
Stewarton has a strongly rooted ‘Can Do’ attitude, which was clearly demonstrated during World War II when the club was temporarily commandeered by the British Army. The site was used to house army vehicles, with trucks being parked on the courts for a period of time.
After the troops and their machinery had vacated the courts, members were unimpressed by the state they’d been left in and managed to successfully petition for the Army to pay for the resurfacing of the courts.
100 years of tennis at Stewarton haven’t passed without challenges, but unsung heroes made up of former and present committee members continue to work to take the club to the next level.
Funding was secured to renovate courts in disrepair in the early 2000s and since then the ball has kept rolling. The committee has worked tirelessly to improve the club over the years with their most recent upgrades coming in the form of resurfaced courts and floodlighting.
The blend of junior and senior members allows for many club events to be held throughout the year, one of which was the inaugural Parent-Child Tournament 2023 on the centenary weekend.
Organised by BL Tennis coaches Brian Griffen and Louise Sansum, the competition attracted 34 pairs competing throughout a day which was described by Junior Convenor James Murray as “the best possible start to the next 100 years”.
Brian and Louise have been implementing the coaching programme since 2020 with a strong focus on grassroots tennis.
Mr Murray said: “We are now able to offer classes at all the LTA levels from mini red ball classes up to yellow ball classes. The coaching programme has been a great success, and we have a large number of junior members who have benefitted hugely from the fantastic coaching they receive from BL Tennis.”
The hard work from BL Tennis is clear to see through the strong turnouts for events such as the Parent-Child Tournament, Junior Club Championships and kids’ holiday camps. Additionally, red, orange, and green ball tournaments are held throughout the year.
Recent success has seen local school Nether-Robertland win the West of Scotland Primary Schools Tournament with the school team composed entirely of Stewarton players.
Louise also recently launched Amazon Prime Video LTA Youth Girls Coaching sessions for girls who are new to tennis. This has been a great success so far, bringing new young players to the club.
It doesn’t stop there for Stewarton, with the committee looking into the possibility of renewing the clubhouse for the next hundred years. The club also has the goal of hosting larger events and further developing the current coaching programme.
- Adult: £150 per year
- Intermediate: £40 per year
- Junior: £20
Click here for more information on Stewarton Tennis Club.