Chairman’s report 2013 From the AGM
There main focus of my report is the recognition of the success that the club has enjoyed in the past 12 months. Just a fortnight ago we received the news that the club had won the Clubmark League Table for the Band 1 - 0-3 floodlit court category. This is a pilot competition that was set up by Kent LTA whereby clubs are scored on a number of criteria including regularly competing juniors, coaching programme numbers, membership numbers, British Tennis membership numbers, teams, events plus additional areas. Tom and Karen have meticulously submitted results and information relating to the club and at the beginning of September we were notified of our success, narrowly pipping Bexley LTC by only one point to take the first place and the prize money of £500.
This award followed on from the great news that we had been awarded Kent LTA Club of the Year (0-4 courts) back in January, allowing us to bank a further £500 prize money in the form of a voucher from the sponsors Trevor May.
Both these Awards are fantastic and demonstrate how Bethersden is developing and improving as a club.
In terms of the coaching I need to emphasise that good coaches are a major factor in achieving a successful and happy club. A comprehensive junior coaching programme is essential for the future prosperity of the club. So I’d like to thank Tom, Sam, Laurence and Dodge plus all the helpers for all their hard work to ensure the coaching programme runs effectively. The uncertainty surrounding the court usage, I know, remains a critical factor in the future direction the coaching programme takes, but I am confident that a solution will be sorted out in the coming months.
Further to this, we are currently still without a lease with the Parish Council. However I am hopeful that a more systematic approach in working out the terms by both Tennis Club and the Parish Council together will yield a new lease and a better relationship between the two parties.
We now field six senior teams in both the summer and winter leagues including Kent and Ashford, and many junior teams. I won’t dwell on individual teams but suffice to say a big thank you to all team captains for what feels sometimes like a thankless task organising and rearranging fixtures, especially with the dreadful winter, but I know is appreciated by the players.
§ Winter Leagues
o Kent League Men – Runners Up in Division 7
o Kent League Mixed – Runners Up in Division 6
o Ashford League Men – Winners of Division 1
o Ashford League Ladies – Runners Up in Division 1
o Ashford Mixed League – 3rd in Division 1
§ Summer Leagues
o Kent Men – Relegated to Division 6
o Kent Mixed – Runners Up in Division 4
o Ashford Men – Runners Up in Division 1
o Ashford Ladies – 4th in Division 1.
o Ashford Mixed A– Currently top but Knoll has a game in hand inDivision 1.
o Ashford Mixed B –Runners Up in Division 2.
All age groups from 8U - 18U entered the Kent Aegon Club Junior Leagues in both the winter and summer sections. Whilst competitive throughout, the only winners were the U14 girls - both winter and summer, and the 8U's who won their group last winter. The 8U have also qualified for the finals for this winters event. The boys 16U and 18U were runners up in the summer leagues.
We ran four tournaments this year including a very enjoyable opening tournament in April which was well attended. The Annual George Tournament again was a success although entries were lower than we would have liked. However, credit is due to all committee members who each ran a court. The Wooden rackets tournament didn’t attract as many entries as we would have hoped, but it was an enjoyable couple of hours on a beautiful Sunday morning – perhaps more interest will be generated next year? Our Club Championships remains a challenge rather like pushing water up hill in terms of getting entries and completing matches. However, Pete Jones has done a sterling job of encouraging players to compete, and we look forward to finding out the results in due course.
I take this opportunity to ask all members to seriously consider giving some of their time to help in managing our club and supporting the tournaments/event that we run. It is worthwhile, rewarding and fun.