Club

February Newsletter

Hope you have all had a good winter and are looking forward to the prospect of spring and the sound of tennis balls fizzing of the strings. It is time to get you briefed on a few things tennis wise. Please read to the end, there is important information below:

Membership Renewal
Claire will be sending out the membership renewals very shortly from ClubSpark, when you receive your renewal email just follow the link contained to renew your membership. The membership year runs from 1st March to the 29th February. Each year we tend to do quite a bit of chasing to remind people to renew, please action the email as soon as you get it and save us all a lot of time and save you some money. Those that renew before 1st April get a discount for prompt payment between £20 to £5 depending on your membership category. If you are not renewing, please tell Claire (Allen) so she will know not to chase you! Each year we try to keep any increases to a modest amount and depending on membership category the increases vary between 0% and 5%. There are no increases on any of the junior packages. BSTC membership rates remain very competitive, even cheap in comparison with comparable rural clubs let alone any clubs within the city of Bristol.
A frequent question we get asked by parents with children in coaching is why do they pay the coaches but still have to pay for membership of the club. The coaching charges only cover the costs of the coaching staff and their time and equipment, this does not provide any income for the club to maintain and eventually replace the courts. We are also keen that all children have a chance to practice outside the lessons and membership allows them to play with their friends outside the lesson times. If you as a parent would like to encourage and play with your child we also have a very modest membership named Playing Parent(s) that enables you to play with your child without having to apply for a full adult membership.

Wimbledon Tickets
The club is allocated pairs of tickets on the basis of the number of British Tennis Memberships that are members of BSTC and have opted in by the 23rd February 2018 -THIS FRIDAY. To obtain a British Tennis Membership and/or opt in to the Wimbledon ballot please go to www.lta.org.uk The free opt in process takes a few minutes, so even if you are not interested in going please help the club and your fellow members to get more tickets by opting in. To date we have only 220 members opted into the ballot, versus 280 last year out of a potential total number in excess of 650!

League Matches
The winter league matches are starting to wind down now with the juniors doing particularly well and we hope for a number of top positions in the leagues. This year we will be running 4 lady's teams in the summer league and 3 men's teams, the matches are played mainly on a Friday night and will start in early May. If you are not a regular league player and would like to play this year then please let Lyn (florincottage@gmail.com) know for the ladies and me (Tonkin.dj@gmail.com) for the men.

Club Tournament
Please look out for an email in the next few weeks about the junior and adult member's knockout tournament that we run each year. For doubles it is done by drawing for a partner. We always try and seed the entry so that we get a balanced draw and reduce the chance of two very strong players being drawn together in the doubles. It is a great social and a way to meet other people in the club plus of course as it gets into the closing rounds and on the Finals Day (9th September) very competitive.

Housekeeping
As you may have seen the painting of the clubhouse is well underway and we hope to have a fully refurbished clubhouse completed by the start of April. Please be careful around the clubhouse while the renovations are under way. Can I appeal to all to look after the clubhouse; in particular can we continue to leave the main clubhouse free of bags by utilising the changing rooms and tidy when the need arises.
I am afraid I have had to engage with a number of parents re the lack of care or direct damage that their children have caused to the premises. Please can I reinforce with all parents to ensure that their children treat the clubhouse and grounds in the correct manner and in particular ensure that the clubhouse is clean after use and the courts free of any litter or balls. Persistent offenders will be asked to leave the club.
Finally, there has been a spate of incidents of vandalism in the Chew Valley and so please ensure the clubhouse and courts are locked after use. During the day lock all the courts, including the kids zone when you are leaving, don't assume someone will be down later to play.

Guidelines about age of unsupervised children at the Club
A parent has recently asked us at what age we consider it acceptable to leave children at the Club unsupervised. We have taken the advice of the LTA in conjunction with the NSPCC and decided that children must be in Year 7 or above before they are left without a responsible adult/older sibling. Please also ensure you child leaves the courts today and locked up after use.

Tennis Clothing
If you are after some great t-shirts and hoodies for yourself or the kids, please contact Suzanne McDonald who has a good selection of sizes in at the moment: suzanne@mcdonaldmccall.com

Appeal for Help
The tennis club is a members club, it is run by the members for the members. There is a hard core of people who dedicate some of their time to help provide the great facilities that we all enjoy. We are always on the lookout for any members or friends happy to help with some of the duties both small and large - if you are interested in getting involved in helping then please drop a line to Sarah Jane: sjsj246@gmail.com

Finally, dates for the Diary:
Road To Wimbledon (Children's U14 tournament) Sunday April 8th
Wimbledon Draw Saturday April 14th at 4pm
Annual General Meeting Monday April 16th at 7pm
Great British Tennis Weekend Sunday May 20th 11am - 2pm
Finals Day Saturday Sunday September 9th 12 noon - 5pm

Many thanks
David Tonkin

Bishop Sutton Tennis Club