For immediate release
Tuesday June 9th 2015
SPORT ENGLAND INVESTMENT ENSURES TENNIS FOR ALL ON THE BACK OF AEGON OPEN NOTTINGHAM
The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) has announced today that it has secured significant financial backing from Sport England for a series of participation events around this summer’s Aegon Open Nottingham tennis tournament.
The £199,300 Sport England Major Events Engagement Fund grant was announced today at the Aegon Open Nottingham and will link the tournament with projects that will make a lasting impact on tennis participation in and around Nottingham.
The event was attended by: Michael Downey, The LTA Chief Executive; Phil Smith, Sport England's Director of Sport; Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture for Nottingham City Council; and Paul Hutchins, Tournament Director, Aegon Open Nottingham (ATP).
Implemented in partnership with Nottingham City Council, the participation plan will have two core elements. Firstly to build mass engagement opportunities in tennis around the tournament, and secondly to establish a community based legacy from the tournament.
Activities taking place during the tournament will include: a discounted summer membership offer for selected clubs in the city, a series of tennis activities in Nottingham’s Market Square, and a number of tennis hitting walls at various sites across the city that will bring tennis to people in areas not traditionally associated with the game.
The recruitment and training of a Community Tennis Officer, forms the back bone of the long term legacy strand of the plan. The Community Tennis Officer will work closely with Nottingham City Council and Sport England’s regional teams, to develop a team of tennis activators to bring tennis opportunities to Community Centers and Multi Use Games Areas (MUGA) to different areas of the city.
The Aegon Open Nottingham (ATP) Tournament Director, Paul Hutchins, said: “We are delighted to bring world class tennis back to Nottingham this summer and it is vital that this great event has a long lasting impact on tennis for all in and around the city. This grant will ensure that we harness the heightened interest in tennis during this summer and give opportunities to pick up a racket and get on court to as many people from all communities in the region.”
Speaking at the announcement, Phil Smith, Sport England's Director of Sport, said: "The closest most of us usually get to the action at major sporting events is watching from the stands and cheering on our side. But that's about to change. This programme means that people can play an active part in the Aegon Open Nottingham, making it a truly interactive experience. Whether you're a diehard tennis fan or someone who's never picked up a racket, there will be something for everyone."
Hugh White, Director for Sport, Culture & Parks at Nottingham City Council welcomed the announcement and said: “This is fantastic news and a great opportunity to work in partnership with the LTA to deliver events that widen opportunities for citizens to live a more active lifestyle through sport. We are proud to see world-class tennis returning to the city this summer and the Sport England grant allows us to continue to raise awareness and make the sport more accessible in communities.”
David Macmillan, Chief Marketing Officer at Aegon added: “We are delighted to be involved in a programme that will bring tennis opportunities to more people across the region. Aegon support British tennis at all levels, and using the high profile of our summer tournaments, including the Aegon Open Nottingham, is a great way to get more people on court and playing tennis.”
As part of the project, seven clubs are participating in a campaign to encourage more people to join a tennis club in Nottinghamshire. The offer, a trial 8 week family membership for £29, aims to encourage families to choose tennis this summer. Participating clubs are Attenborough Tennis Club, Burton Joyce Tennis Club, Eastwood Tennis Club, Caunton Tennis Club, Magdala Tennis Club, West Bridgford Tennis Club, Wollaton Village Tennis Club. For more details of this and other ways to play tennis in Nottingham visit www.tennisinnottingham.com
For more information on the Aegon Open Nottingham and to purchase tickets please visit: http://www.lta.org.uk/major-events/aegon-open-nottingham
- ENDS -
For media enquiries please contact:
Charlie Bosomworth; LTA Communications Officer
0208 487 7021 or 07932 276 053
Katie Nixon; LTA Communications Officer
Notes to Editors:
- The Lawn Tennis Association’s (LTA) mission is to get more people playing tennis more often, and its role is to develop, promote and govern tennis in Britain.
- Aegon is Lead Partner of British Tennis and is helping to transform the sport in this country. They’re supporting young talent through the Aegon FutureStars programme, as well as sponsoring the junior and senior GB Davis and Fed Cup teams and amateur and professional events. Aegon sponsor three world-class grass court tournaments; the Aegon Classic, Aegon International and Aegon Championships and will also sponsor the new WTA and ATP events in Nottingham from 2015. For further information visit www.aegontennis.co.uk
- The Aegon Open Nottingham will see two tournaments take place in June, the women’s WTA event taking place from 8-14 June 2015, and the men’s ATP event being staged from 22-28 June 2015. Both tournaments will be an integral part of the new British grass court season, which in 2015 will see a three week window between Roland Garros and Wimbledon for the very first time.