Coronavirus club update and newsletter

Dear Fishbourne Tennis Club member,

Please read this important update from your committee about activities at Fishbourne Tennis Club, all of which takes immediate effect.
Our motto during the coronavirus emergency is: Keep active, keep smiling, keep safe.
Courts can continue to be booked online and used by members for private games as usual. In addition all mix-in club sessions are continuing for members who wish to take part, and who do not fall within vulnerable group government guidelines.

But… keeping the courts open will only be possible if all FTC members show strict adherence to all current and future government and NHS health advice, as laid out in the FTC email to members of 11th March. Your committee has also taken decisions that will change some things we take for granted.

The position as of 19th March (bear in mind it could change at any time) is as follows:

  • All group coaching classes with Generation Tennis have ceased until further notice, at Alex Bone’s request; further information about Junior Easter camps to be advised.
  • The club’s Open Day, AGM and table tennis competition have been postponed.
  • The 2020 Club Championships will not take place but an exciting new alternative club competition open to all members will be held when appropriate.
  • The clubhouse kitchen facilities are closed and the clubhouse is not to be used for socialising/meetings/match teas. It should only be accessed for balls and floodlight switches, and hand-washing.
  • The Portsmouth & District summer league matches, due to start 1 April and which include seven teams from Fishbourne, are still on but individual captains, and our league coordinator Jazz Kimbell, are proceeding on a match-by-match basis only.
  • And in case you’d forgotten: No handshaking, and all advice re handwashing, “social distancing” and tissue disposal to be followed.
  • Please can anyone diagnosed with coronavirus or who has been in contact with someone with coronavirus must tell the club immediately and not attend the courts.
  • Anyone showing any cold or flu like symptoms, even if mild, should not come to the club, even if given the all-clear for coronavirus.

Remember: Keep active, keep smiling, keep safe.

As FTC members have previously been advised, the adult membership subscription for 2020/21 is £130 and it is now due. Paying promptly will make life easier for your committee, ensure your continued access to the courts – and allow improvements to proceed so when things are back to normal tennis at Fishbourne will be better than ever.

Meanwhile, take a moment to reflect on what £130 buys you…

  • Five mix-in club sessions a week
  • Free informal adult coaching on certain Wednesday afternoons
  • Free junior membership for families
  • Free use of floodlights
  • Free online booking
  • Free balls at club sessions
  • Subsidised travel for matchplay
  • Complimentary tea and coffee in the refurbished clubhouse
  • Mostly cost-price social events and tennis competitions
  • Plentiful and free parking
In spite of the difficult times, it is still your committee’s hope that 2020 will see completion of the club’s improvement plan with a new Tiger Turf surface (identical to Court 2) laid on Court 1 along with new super-bright and efficient LED floodlights. A recently awarded grant of £15,000 from the district council brings all this a lot closer to reality. The money will also pay to ensure Fishbourne Tennis Club is one of few clubs in the area to offer wheelchair-tennis. The club would like to thank FTC member Debbie Jupp for acting as a consultant in the successful grant aid application.

With the AGM postponed, and with it the club’s Wimbledon ticket ballot, we left it to the LTA computer to allot the 12 pairs of tickets that the club won this year. Of course, we can only hope the championships will proceed in the face of so many cancelled sports events. For the record though, the winners of the 12 pairs of tickets are: James Course, Elizabeth Williams, Barrie Dunn, Bob Murray, Faye Jones, Joe Daborn, Chris Pring, Bill Cove, Leslie Kelsall, and Susie Upton-Brown, with two more to be redrawn.

A  birthday card signed by many members of the club was given to Sheila Hill recently. Sheila writes: “I was so pleased to receive a lovely birthday card signed by so many club members. I would like to thank everyone for their birthday wishes on my BIG birthday.”


The American Tournament on 15 March went off as planned, with close  matches and a particularly close finish. Sue Lord on 22 points just pipped husband David by one point. Third was Peggy Burnand while five players – Lorna and Charles Donnelly, Amanda Slevin, Cressida Williams and Jim Welsh – tied on fourth place.  Dipak Duggal, Persephone Hagan, Jan Howard, Priscilla Pendle and Sandy Thornton all tied on fifth spot. Thanks to the sensational soup makers, Sue Lord and Nicola Dawtrey, to Sheila Hill for all the admin and Roy and June for their advice and help.