A London 2012 tennis legacy
Since setting up during London 2012, Cheslyn Hay Tennis Club has grown to over 200 people taking part every week. Here they talk about being open to all and how they are looking forward to I Am Team GB.
How important do you think the Olympic legacy has been for the club?
“The London 2012 Olympics inspired young people to take part in sport whatever their ability. There was a massive buzz four years ago and the legacy must continue. Now it is the role of community sports clubs around the country to take the lead and ensure young people continue playing sport. Through providing enjoyable and positive experiences it will hopefully leave them wanting to come back for more!
How has the club grown since then?
Our first tennis sessions was during the London 2012 Olympics. We used our Join In profile to attract juniors and adults to start participating in tennis and had over 50 people join in. Four years on, we provide tennis at leisure centres and parks for over 200 people every week.
Many youngsters who started during 2012 are now even playing for mens teams at Cheslyn Hay. The project four years ago changed the tennis landscape in the area from somewhere with no tennis opportunities, to now creating a range of accessible, affordable and quality tennis experiences for all ages and abilities.
How many volunteers help at the club?
We have got an army of 15 volunteers at Cheslyn Hay. From volunteer coaches, young leaders, team captains and committee members. We recognise the massive role of these people in ensuring that the Club continues to provide great sporting experiences. Without this dedicated group of people, who willingly give their time to enable others to play the sport they love, the club wouldn’t exist.
“Without this dedicated group of people, the club wouldn’t exist.”
Who has benefitted from joining the club?
We have juniors who started playing during the London Olympics who are now taking an active role as Tennis Leaders↑, by assisting coaches and organising competitions for young people. They have developed a range of communication and organisation skills and are compassionate to young people needs. It is very satisfying as a club to see these young people developing into well-rounded young people, who are role models in their community.
What made you want to get involved in I Am Team GB?
We want to use the excitement of the performances at the Rio 2016 Olympics to inspire the next generation of young people. It is a great opportunity to showcase our sport and to open our doors to welcome new members and supporters.
How do you think the club will benefit from the nation’s biggest sports day?
I Am Team GB will allow us to showcase tennis as a fun, affordable and exciting sport. We hope the event will provide a great introduction to tennis for all ages and abilities. Hopefully some people will like to continue after the event through the range of sessions we provide in the area.”
“Grassroots sport brings communities together. It provides a start for young people to take part, then to be part of their life, whatever their ability.”
– Sign up to take part or help out at the Cheslyn Hay Tennis Club I Am Team GB event.