Edinburgh's flagship tennis facility at Craiglockhart has been served up six new outdoor tennis courts, having secured funding from Tennis Scotland and sportscotland.
The new all-weather courts are official being opening tomorrow with an exicting Festival of Tennis. The general public can get involved in some free coaching sessions from She Rallies, Disability Tennis with Advantage Tennis as well as some of Edinburgh Leisure's own coaches. As well as that, the Centre Court will see an exhibition match between some of Scotland's top players.
This will see Colin Fleming (Tennis Scotland National Coach) and James MacKinlay (Current U18 GB National Doubles Champion) take on Scott Duncan (ITF Nottingham Futures Doubles Champion and World number 481 in doubles) and Alan MacDonald (part of Jamie Murray's coaching team and former World Number 6 over 35 player). The event is completely free and we cant wait to see this fantastic match take place on the historic court.
The outdoor tennis courts at Craiglockhart have seen many world-famous players grace their surface over the years from Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe in the 1970s to Andy Murray in the 90s.
Blane Dodds, CEO at Tennis Scotland said: "It is fantastic to see the development of the outdoor courts at Craiglockhart come to fruition. Tennis Scotland was delighted to be able to support the development of these courts including floodlights through the Tennis Scotland Community Fund. It has been great to watch the project develop from the Tennis Scotland office and we are looking forward to start seeing players of all ages and abilities stepping out on the courts to enjoy the new court facilities. These courts will play a big part in our competitions calendar as well supporting in our drive to grow and develop tennis in Scotland."
Kirsty Stobie, Manager at Edinburgh Leisure's Craiglockhart Tennis Centre said: "Edinburgh Leisure is very grateful to Tennis Scotland and sportscotland for their funding contribution. We're thrilled that the new surface will allow us to continue to host the Junior International Edinburgh and the Scottish Junior Open Championships each year, which will bring the outdoor courts alive with talented players from all over the world coming to participate. We also hope that this fantastic venue will be able to host other events with the addition of the new courts.
"The surface will help support the development of our junior players within Edinburgh Leisure's programme as well as the development squads supported by Tennis Scotland and can also be enjoyed by members of the public."
Stewart Harris, Chief Executive at sportscotland said: "At sportscotland we are committed to ensuring that sports facilities are well planned, well placed, sustainable and as a result, able to deliver more opportunities for people to take part in sport at every level. The development of these courts at Craiglockhart will now provide year-round access, allowing the expansion of the tennis coaching programme and positively impacting on both participation and progression in the sport of tennis.
"That's why we were delighted to play our part by providing expertise and £100,000 of National Lottery funding to support our partners in Edinburgh Leisure and Tennis Scotland to deliver this terrific project. I'm sure it will be an asset to the sport and the community for many years to come."
Craiglockhart Tennis Centre has six indoor courts and a further three outdoor clay courts at the back of the building in addition to these new courts, a cycling studio and Harry's Café. Its Leisure Centre also boasts a spacious gym with over 70 pieces of kit, fitness studios, squash courts and a multipurpose sports hall.