Tennis Centre makes a racket
LIVERPOOL Tennis Centre has done the
double and scooped 2 top gongs at an industry award ceremony. The venue took
gold for:- 'Disability Tennis Programme of the Year' and their head coach,
Andy McGarry, took the title of:- 'Lancashire Tennis Coach of the Year' at
the Lancashire in the '2016 British Tennis Awards', beating off competition from
across the region.
Over the past 12 months the scheme has significantly increased the number of
opportunities available for people with disabilities to enjoy tennis. This has
included introducing new weekly wheelchair tennis and visually impaired
sessions, supported by the Tennis Foundation, with players attending regularly
from across Merseyside. The centre also runs a Downs Syndrome mini tennis
activities each week as well as delivering taster sessions for local special
In August the venue hosted the first ever Liverpool Wheelchair Tennis Tournament
with 20 players competing from across the UK.
Added to this, as part of a commitment to the 'Active Me' programme (which aims to
encourage people to take up exercise) tennis has been delivered in every
Lifestyles centre giving many disabled adults the chance to enjoy tennis for the
George Ferguson, who takes part in the visually impaired tennis sessions, said:-
"I was a newcomer to tennis when I 1st tried it at the Liverpool Tennis
Centre back in October. I wasn't sure what to expect when I first arrived, as I
had never tried tennis before and thought it would be too difficult due to
having a visual impairment. However, the coach who was assigned to deliver the
visually impaired tennis sessions was fantastic with the group. He made us feel
very welcome and comfortable during the session, which in turn helped us enjoy
the session even more than we thought we would. Following a successful and
enjoyable first attempt at tennis, I have been going every week since. It is a
great feeling being able to play tennis, something I thought I would never do. I
would never even have tried playing the game at any point if it was not for
these sessions being hosted in Liverpool."
The double celebration continued as Andy McGarry, was named Lancashire 'Tennis
Coach of the Year.' The accolade recognised Andy's success in increasing the
number of children playing tennis, which has grown from 38 to more than 400 in
just 18 months. He is also committed to developing a new team of coaches through
a Tennis Leaders programme, with the aim to inspire the future generations of
Councillor Tim Moore, Mayoral Lead for Sport, said:- "This is fantastic
news for Liverpool Tennis Centre and I'm delighted that their hard work and
dedication to getting people involved in tennis, regardless of age or ability,
has been recognised across the region.
The programme and the experienced team of coaches, give people the opportunity
and confidence to try something new, which not only has physical benefits, but
also introduces a social element; being part of an activity and making new
friends can do wonders for a person's health and wellbeing.
I'd like to congratulate everyone involved and l am sure the programme will
continue to go from strength to strength."
Liverpool Tennis Centre and Andy McGarry now progress to the regional section of
the 'Aegon British Tennis Awards' where they will compete against other winners
from the North of England, in the New Year.