Tennis boom can't be ignored

THE tennis boom that is being enjoyed currently at Brelsford Park is enough reason for Coffs Harbour City Council to make room for at least eight courts when the updated plans for the city icon is released.

According to Coffs Harbour Tennis Club president Ryan Simpson, his club has changed dramatically recently with the club's lease holders Tiebreak Tennis now having two business owners instead of one and the number of people catered to in this time tripling.

Simpson added that the club has also become a community asset in the time with the increased involvement from so many new players.

“Notable in the last six months is also the change of attitude, freshness and vibe in and around the club,” he said.

“It really is all happening down here at the moment. The club looks fresher, it feels fresher and it's full of positive, happy momentum that's wearing off onto everyone.

“We have younger vibrant people now attracting a new generation of players into the complex. People are no longer seeing the place as having that 1970s look and feel with tea and biscuits and a formal intimidating environment. That's simply not us anymore.

“We're getting more and more new faces in the door every week including members from other clubs who are attracted to the more laid back approach and freshness of it all.

“Coming along on our weekly social night with a beer and snacks to enjoy a good night of tennis and laughs is the direction we're heading and it seems to be what everyone wants.”

Simpson believes the club's committee has enjoyed a good working relationship with Council on the issue of the plans to upgrade Brelsford Park and accept that the concept plan, for now, is an idea put on paper that can be changed as progress is made based on community concerns.

The club has supplied evidence to support keeping at least one of the two courts they wish to remove clearly indicating it wouldn't be negotiable to take two without severely jeopardising the community.

“The letter was very direct and to the point so there was no mistaking our thoughts,” Simpson added.

“We've agreed as a club to issue our concerns and let the council have some breathing space to make the changes. This isn't an us against them thing despite them taking 22 per cent of our space away on the concept plan.

“We've now given them the information they need to identify as to why seven courts aren't enough and acknowledge that we've had our say now and we should allow them a right of reply by means of a second draft plan. Until then all we can do is wait.”

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