AGM report & New Committee

Many thanks to all those members who braved a chilly night at the Clubhouse to come along to our AGM on January11th.

Chairman Bernadette Hillman reported that despite our membership being slightly down – and hence also our income – the club still managed to make a small profit. The bulk of this came from the two quiz nights that we staged together with the Village Hall committee; another is planned for 16th April and these are always a sell-out. The Play Tennis Day in June whilst not attracting as many new members as last year, was still worthwhile, and we shall plan a similar event for this year.

Sara Leavy, our coach, is doing a wonderful job continuing to encourage juniors and adults alike, and her Monday and Saturday coaching sessions are very well attended. Indeed our Men’s ‘B’ and ‘C’ teams both won their respective summer leagues, and in addition our Men’s team has just won the Winter league. This is a superb performance for a small club like ours. Two Round Robin tournaments were held, and Bernadette plans more for this year. We also ran two Table Tennis competitions which were very popular and – very competitive! We also enjoyed an excellent late-summer Chairman’s barbecue, the food at which, despite the best efforts of under-sous-chef Dave Hillman, was mouth watering!

Bernadette concluded by thanking Glenn Wigley for his fantastic organisation of the Mike Venn Trophy games on Sunday mornings. To rapturous applause, she agreed (after much arm twisting) to stay on for another year! The new committee was elected and is listed on page five. Finally, Bernadette chaired the vote on this year’s subscription charges, and the good news is that despite a small rise in some subscriptions (see next article) the rates remain extremely competitive, so please tell your friends how they and their families can still play tennis for as little as 65 pence each per week (example of family and two children; have more children and save even more!) or just 48 pence per week for a junior member! 127 people can’t be wrong!

The 2010 Club tournament cups were then officially awarded (unfortunately in the absence of several winners!) to Darren Kerins for the Men’s Singles, Darren Kerins and John Slater in the Men’s Doubles, Janet Hale and Judy Venn for the Ladies Doubles, and to Jane Wigley and Stuart Adolph in the Mixed Doubles. Further awards were made to Stuart Adolph for Most Improved Senior Player and to Laura Williams for Most Improved Junior. Finally, Bernadette announced that our club President for 2011 will be Judy Venn. A very popular choice!

Thanks to all our members for your continued support – without you there would be no club. We’re always on the lookout for people who’d like to become more involved, and it’s nice to see a couple of new faces on the committee this year. Remember, this is your club. See later in the newsletter for a full list of who to contact.

Your Club Needs You!!

We’re always on the look-out for more people to help on the committee, to bring in some new ideas – we need to encourage new blood to prevent the club from going stale. So please, do consider helping out a bit for the sake of your club, it’s not onerous and we do have a lot of fun! Call us – we don’t bite J!

Social Tennis Sessions

Confirmation that our Tuesday evening social sessions now run from 6pm to 9pm so that those who may work late still have the opportunity to come along. We hope more members will take advantage of these sessions in the current fine weather. It’s all included in your membership! And don’t forget we also play on Sunday mornings from 10am….all are welcome.

Clubhouse Heaters

Just a friendly reminder to please ensure that the heaters in the clubhouse are switched off if you’ve used them, before you leave. They’ve been left on a couple of times recently which isn’t good for either our carbon footprint, or our bank balance!


Subscriptions for the year 2011-2012 were voted to be as follows:

Adult £75
Couple £115
Family £135
Senior Citizen £65
Student £27
Junior £25
Child under 10 £12
Social (non-playing) £10

These represent excellent value for money for a club with three new courts, floodlights, clubhouse and superb coaching facilities. We look forward to enjoying your membership for another year – the new forms will be around in a few weeks!

Like to play more regularly?

Some members have said that they would like the opportunity to play the occasional friendly game against other club members. However they don’t know who to call who might be in a similar position. So, Glenn has offered to maintain and publish a list of members who would like to be contacted by others on the list for the occasional (or frequent…) game. If you’d like to be included, then please let Glenn know by either calling him on 01525  220006, or e-mail glenn.wigley@kier.co.uk


For more than 25 years TennisPlanet has been operating in the tennis sector and now offers the broadest assortment of tennis articles in Europe.
Besides the U.K., TennisPlanet is active in the Netherlands, Germany, France, Luxembourg, Sweden, Spain, Belgium and Italy.

As a tennis player, you can buy all your tennis equipment through TennisPlanet. You have access to tennis rackets, tennis apparel, tennis shoes, tennis balls, strings and grips as well as stringing machines and court equipment. Besides TennisPlanets own brand TYGER, TennisPlanet has all major brands in its product range such as Adidas, Nike, Babolat, Wilson, Head, Prince, etc.

As an extra bonus, if you choose your equipment via their website, and place your order through member Nick Boys, then you will benefit from an additional discount. Just contact Nick for details on 07810 832774. Just go to tennisplanet.co.uk and start choosing!

If at first you don’t succeed…

‘Never give up’ is the motto of long-standing EBLTC member Jo Venn, sister of founder member Mike and sister-in-law to current secretary Judy. Jo has been a member of our 100 club from its outset back in 1987, and until this summer, had never won a penny, being our longest standing non-winning entrant. That is until her lucky number came up and bagged her £50! For the record, that’s 276 draws she was unsuccessful in before her big win! Congratulations Jo, your total investment to date of £276 is clearly starting to pay off!!

Thanks BLCF !!

The Bedfordshire and Luton Community Foundation is a grant maker supporting local community groups and charities. It encourages philanthropy and its funds come from local businesses and individuals and from national charities and organisations which recognise their skills and local knowledge. In some cases, donors can double the value of their investment into their charitable trust fund through the Grassroots Grants scheme.

Their principal aim is to support any charitable purpose for the benefit of the community and in particular the advancement of education, the protection of good health, both mental and physical, and the relief of poverty and sickness.

We are extremely lucky to have been awarded a grant of £625 to use towards our coaching programme for our junior members. Sara Leavy, Peter Hale and Ross Bagni were instrumental in securing this grant, and we are extremely grateful to them, and especially to the Bedfordshire and Luton Community Foundation. Read more about them on: http://www.blcf.org.uk/

Summer League results

Here’s a brief summary of how our teams performed in the 2010 South Beds Summer Leagues.

Men’s A Team; Played 7, Won 4, Lost 3. Points 88.  3rd out of 7 in Div 1

Men’s B Team; Played 6, Won 5, Lost 1. Points 97. Champions of Division 3

Men’s C Team; Played 7, Won 6, Lost 1. Points 113. Champions of Division 4

Men’s D Team; Played 7, Won 2, Lost 5. Points 37.  8th out of 8 in Division 4

Mixed Team; Played 7, Won 1, Lost 6.  Points 52.  6th out of 8 in Division 2

A total of 34 matches were played. Thanks again to all of the Captains who ensured that Eaton Bray played all of their matches except one where the other team didn’t turn up! (a “walkover” for the Men’s B)

Focus on the Coach!

Our club coach is Sara Leavy, who comes to us courtesy of Nick Boys of Elite Management. For those of you who have not yet met Sara, here is a reminder of her background. We encourage you to come along to a session or two and see for yourselves how Sara can improve your game!

Sara has been playing tennis since she was 4 years old and has represented the county continuously over the years and started playing for the ladies teams at the age of 12. Sara has been county number one in her age group since she was 8. She has played at club, county and national levels and at the age of 18 was given a full scholarship to America at the University of Tennessee at Martin. In the 4 years Sara spent in America she consistently played in the top 2 positions on the team for singles and doubles. In 2006 Sara was awarded Freshman of the Year in the Ohio Valley Conference and in 2009 she was awarded Athlete of the Year at her University. In her senior year Sara was undefeated in the conference with a 10-0 record. Sara’s current LTA rating is 3.2

As a coach, Sara has been coaching since she was 12 years old where she started as a tennis assistant at Linslade TC. Sara has experience of coaching children and adults of varying standards and for the last 3 years has coached at a summer tennis camp at the University of Pepperdine in Malibu, California. Sara is a qualified professional tennis coach.

For individual lessons contact Sara on 07561 571578. Prices for private lessons start at £15 an hour.

Broken A String?

Contact Sarah Leavy on 07561 571 578 for a restring – £20 per racket


Photos from the 2010 Final’s Day

January 2011

The large crowd eagerly awaits start of play

January 2011

Mixed doubles runners-up Martin Clark andDanielle Tansley on the left, with winners Jane Wigley and Stuart Adolph

January 2011

Keith Hillman after a close point  In the Men’s singles final

January 2011

Keep Out – Umpire at Work!!

January 2011

Darren Kerins serving in the Men’s singles

January 2011

Men’s Doubles runners up Nick Boys and Glenn Wigley on the left, with winner Darren Kerins and John Slater on the right

January 2011

Ladies Doubles winners Jan Hale and Judy Venn on the left, with runners up Carole Thorp and Des Antoniou