Be TT funding is helping Aireborough Community Table Tennis Club go from strength to strength and get new players into the sport.
The club was originally established as part of the Leeds Priority Zone work in May 2016, when eight tables were placed in Aireborough Leisure Centre to try to develop the sport.
The club now has a regular Wednesday evening ladder league involving up to 20 people. The league is inter-generational, with youngsters playing against adults, and the plan is to develop this into a short format pairs league in the near future with the aim that some of the players will join the Leeds League in September 2019.
Most of the players have joined the social ladder league from local Satellite Clubs at Guiseley Baptist Church and Guiseley Primary School and also the very successful Friday morning Bat and Chat session at the Leisure Centre.
Head Coach Rick Gonzalez said: “Most of the players are either new to the sport or have come back after a long break from playing. There is a really inter-generational feel to the sessions and the new social competition format is proving a really popular option.
“The Be TT funding and Satellite Club funding has allowed us to expand our programmes to offer a more social level of the sport to all.”
Sally Shutt, Table Tennis England Development & Volunteering Officer, has been really impressed with the progress. She said: “This has all grown from placing eight tables in a council leisure centre.
“The two weekly sessions have now evolved into a progressive community club offering a range of open play, coaching and social competition. They have successfully developed links with local schools and community groups which is really helping them grow and sustain their membership.”