Image: Brendan Sapp Unsplash

Four refurbished pickleball courts at the Memorial Recreation Ground in Broadstairs were officially opened at an event on Friday 17 May.

The courts have been improved in a joint project between the Thanet Community Safety Partnership, Thanet District Council’s Open Spaces team, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Kent, the Kent and Medway Violence Reduction Unit and local Pickleball group, the Baypoint Pickleball Club.

As part of the refurbishment, Thanet District Council’s Open Spaces team cleared and painted the courts, updated line markings and installed permanent nets. The project was supported with funding from the various partners as follows:

  • Police and Crime Commissioner for Kent (£2,670)
  • Thanet District Council’s Community and Open Spaces Teams (£2,000)
  • Kent and Medway Violence Reduction unit (£1,500)
  • Baypoint Pickleball Club (£171.00)

The four refurbished, free to use courts are available on a first come, first served basis and players are required to bring their own racquets and balls. They were first opened to the public on Tuesday 9 April, at the Thanet Community Safety Partnership’s Park Life family event.

Growing in popularity around the globe, pickleball is a racquet sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong.

Cllr Heather Keen, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said:

“I am delighted that the pickleball courts are now open to the public, free of charge. Pickleball is an ideal activity for players of all ages and fitness levels. Sport is a fantastic way to become physically active and also supports positive mental health and wellbeing. Delivering a free resource like this is just one way that we are supporting the wellbeing of local people.

“We hope that by providing updated and well maintained sporting facilities, more residents and visitors will be encouraged to use the park, reducing instances of antisocial behaviour.”

Sergeant Sheena Maclean-Bell, of Thanet’s Child Centred Policing Team, said:

“We are pleased to see this public space refurbished and revitalised for local children and residents.

“High-quality public spaces deter anti-social behaviour and criminal damage, but more importantly we hope to arrange events using the courts to give young people in the area an activity to concentrate on and keep them away from potential crime.”

By Ed

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