Tennis Centre makes a racket at awards
Liverpool Tennis Centre has scooped two top gongs at an industry award ceremony.
The Wavertree 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’ in the 2016 British Tennis Awards.
The awards come in the wake of an increased number of opportunities available for people with disabilities to enjoy tennis, including the introduction of new weekly wheelchair tennis and visually impaired sessions.
The centre also runs Downs Syndrome mini tennis activities each week as well as delivering taster sessions for local schools.
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 first time.
George Ferguson, who takes part in the visually impaired tennis sessions, said: “’I was a newcomer to tennis when I first 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.”
The double celebration continued as Andy McGarry was named Lancashire Tennis Coach of the Year.
He has also committed to developing a new team of coaches through a Tennis Leaders programme, with the aim to inspire the future generations of tennis players.
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. 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.