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Tennis fans thank weekly for helping to revamp public courts

Tennis enthusiasts have thanked a weekly newspaper which successfully campaigned to get public courts on its patch revamped.

The Droitwich Standard helped raise £40,000 to refurbish the tennis courts at Lido Park, in the Worcestershire town.

The Standard had been contacted 14 months ago by reader Elaine Ball about the state of disrepair into which the courts had fallen due to broken tarmac and holes.

The paper ran the launch story on its front page and regular stories on fundraising events and donations, which included ‘Leave a Lido Legacy’, a scheme run by Elaine and fellow fund-raiser Neil Bates.

Droitwich tennis

Standard editor Tristan Harris said: “When we were contacted about the campaign by Elaine we just had to help. Her and Neil’s enthusiasm to raise the money so tennis would be freely available to everyone in Droitwich was an inspiration.

“And her timing on launching the campaign was perfect – it was just before Wimbledon fortnight when the nation is traditionally gripped by tennis fever. We’re just as ecstatic as Elaine and Neil that this campaign has been a fantastic success and are looking forward to covering the official opening of the courts early next year.”

Wychavon District Council assisted the fund-raising by first agreeing to match-fund a £20,000 total but then, thanks the strength of public feeling, the authority put forward another £10,000.

Elaine said: “We would like to thank everyone who has helped, in particular the fantastic support from Wychavon District Council and the Droitwich Standard newspaper which have both backed the project right from the start.

“Without them and the help from all of our sponsors this would never have happened.”