Canterbury City Council has announced work has begun on a £56,000 investment to renovate five public tennis courts at West Beach in Whitstable in a joint project between the LTA (formerly known as the Lawn Tennis Association) and the council.

It will see all the courts resurfaced and relined with new nets and new surrounding fencing.

Photo: Canterbury City Council

Work will take place in phases between now and May, with the fencing the final element to be completed.

Alongside the investment in the courts themselves, the council and a tennis operator will also work with the LTA to deliver a range of activities at the West Beach courts. This will include weekly organised free park tennis sessions for all ages, playing levels and experience where equipment is provided, meaning that people will not need someone to play with or their own racket.

Local tennis leagues will also provide friendly, sociable opportunities to get active through local competition. All courts and sessions will be available to book online via the LTA website www.lta.org.uk/play making it far easier to find and book a court or activity.

The council’s Cabinet member for open spaces, Cllr Charlotte Cornell, said:

“This cash boost for our local tennis courts at West Beach is great news for Whitstable. There’s a thriving tennis community in the town already, but we hope this big upgrade in the quality of the facilities will attract lots of new players to the game.

“We are very pleased to be partnering with the LTA on this project and tapping into all their resources and expertise. It’s really exciting and we can’t wait for the work to be completed and to see that first serve being hit in a few months’ time.”

Chief Operating Officer at the LTA, Julie Porter, said:

“We are delighted to be working with Canterbury City Council to improve their park tennis facilities and provide more opportunities for anyone to pick up a racket and get active.

“This investment is part of the UK government and LTA’s Parks Tennis Project, and will mean that courts will be available for people to use for years to come. We will also be working closely with the council to ensure that the local community has a range of accessible opportunities to get on court, and open up our sport to many more people.”

The UK government and LTA Tennis Foundation is contributing £42,000 to the total cost with the council providing £14,000 using money from the United Kingdom Shared Prosperity Fund. The West Beach project is part of a nationwide investment by the government and LTA Tennis Foundation, delivered by the LTA, to refurbish public tennis courts across the country and open up the sport to many more people.

By Ed

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