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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

LTA and Highland Council’s Inverness Park Tennis Court Transformation Set to be Smash Hit  

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Highland Council and the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association) have served up a new partnership to invest in and transform the park tennis courts in Bellfield Park, Inverness.

The 10-court venue (eight standard and two mini courts) will benefit from a £192,000 investment to ensure quality facilities for the local community.

Work on site is now underway.

In addition to investment of £167,000 from the UK Government and LTA Tennis Foundation, £25,000 is also being invested by Highland Council.

The project is part of a £30m nationwide investment by the UK Government and LTA Tennis Foundation, delivered by the LTA, to transform park tennis courts across the UK, and open up the sport to more people.

This investment will see thousands of existing park tennis courts in poor or unplayable condition brought back to life for the benefit of communities across the country through renovation works, and improved court accessibility with new gate-access technology and booking systems.

Park tennis courts are vital in providing opportunities for children and adults to get active, delivering significant physical and mental health and wellbeing benefits to participants.

Accessible and affordable facilities within public parks are critical in terms of opening up the sport to all.

Alongside the investment, The Highland Council, High Life Highland and Bellfield Tennis Club will also work with the LTA to deliver a range of activity across the park sites.

This will include weekly organised free park tennis sessions for all ages, playing levels and experience where equipment is provided, meaning that people will not need someone to play with or their own racket.

Local Tennis Leagues will also provide friendly, sociable, opportunities to get active through local competition. 

The refurbished courts and venue at Bellfield Park and will be available to book online including via the LTA website LTA website making it far easier to find and book a court or activity.

Investment into parks is one way in which the LTA is working to open tennis up across Scotland, in partnership with Tennis Scotland.

The LTA, Tennis Scotland and Sportscotland are also delivering the £15million Transforming Scottish Indoor Tennis fund to provide more year-round community accessible tennis provision, including the development of new indoor facilities in Oriam and Moray which are currently underway.

Following the hosting of the Billie Jean King Cup Finals and Davis Cup Regional Finals in Glasgow last year, which were both attended by hundreds of school children, work is ongoing to significantly increase the number of young people who have the opportunity to pick up a racket at school, through the LTA Youth programme.

Chair of Highland Council’s Education Committee, Cllr John Finlayson, said:

“People living in and visiting Inverness and the Highlands will soon have access to some truly ‘ace’ tennis facilities, thanks to our partnership with the Lawn Tennis Association.

“Play-based outdoor activities for young people and adults are a crucial part of the continuing progress we have made against the harms of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Physical exercise and outdoor activities like tennis have a well-documented, positive impact on people’s mental health and well-being and we need to ensure that initiatives like this continue to be developed right across the Highlands.”

Julie Porter, Chief Operating Officer at the LTA, said:

“We are delighted to be working with The Highland Council to improve their park tennis facilities and provide more opportunities for anyone to pick up a racket and get active.

“This investment is part of the UK Government and LTA’s Parks Tennis Project and will mean that courts will be available for people to use for years to come.

“We will also be working closely with The Highland Council to ensure that the local community have a range of accessible opportunities to get on court and open up our sport to many more people.”

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