A well-established club located in the North-East of Scotland – Montrose Lawn Tennis Club is nurturing new and existing tennis players in their community through a whole range of programmes and initiatives that caters to every age group.
Home to six full-size outdoor courts with floodlighting, two mini courts and a comfortable clubhouse, which provides a fantastic social space for its 270+ members, Montrose Tennis Club is certainly paving the way for success in Angus in Scotland.
“A couple of the programmes we’ve set up in recent years weren’t originally being done by other clubs, but now they have followed on from our initiatives”, said Club President, Maggie Hodges. “Our coach, Graeme Walker, started going into a Day Care centre opposite the tennis courts and running a form of tennis with the clients at the centre.
“The sessions have been running for several years, and when the weather permits, he invites the children from a local nursery down to join the older participants from the Day Care centre on the mini courts.
“You’ll have the two age groups interacting and playing together on court – it’s absolutely fantastic to see and now, other clubs are trying to emulate that. For the children, they’re just having fun with the older generation, while for the daycare clients, it’s a joy for them to be able to do activities outside of the usual one’s you’d get in a daycare centre, such as bingo, and interact with the tots.”
Alongside their admirable work within the club itself, Montrose are looking to collaborate with local charity Angus Alive – an organisation which seeks to inspire healthy, active, and creative lifestyle choices across sports in the area. Through their collaboration, the club is hoping to reach out to families to encourage participation in sports.
“We’ve just finished a huge postcode mapping exercise, where we’re trying to pinpoint areas where people don’t participate in sport – whether that’s football, tennis, or anything else, so we can see physically where we can target to try and increase participation.
“Then we can reach out to families in the areas of the towns where there is social deprivation and try to work out how we can formulate plans to encourage those children and families to come along and participate.
“It will allow us to look at the reasons behind low participation levels, whether it’s transportation issues, or they can’t afford the coaching fees, or because they feel that tennis is a middle-class sport – it’s all about breaking down the barriers,”