Thanks to the generosity of the Jack Petchey Foundation the ETTA, in partnership with ESTTA, has enabled 53 schools in London to receive 4 free table tennis tables and an equipment pack. In total 212 tables have been donated this year. This fantastic scheme shows how popular table tennis is and what a great activity it is for young people.
“We are quickly proving that where there are table tennis tables provided, there are no barriers and people play; it’s really as simple as that.” said Richard Yule, ETTA Chief Executive
Hannah Bladen, Sport England’s Regional Lead for London, said: “The opportunity to try a new sport for the first time is often all a person needs to catch the sporting bug. The Jack Petchey Table Tennis Donation Scheme is a great way for young people to try table tennis and have a quality sporting experience that will encourage them to stay involved.”
The schools have already noticed the positive impact that table tennis has brought to their school. Paul Walsh, PE Department, Woolwich Polytechnic revealed: “We recently held the district table tennis tournament, for both key stage 3+4, the first time that anyone in the borough had held it for three years, because of these [Jack Petchey table tennis tables].”
Becky Forshaw, Sports Co-ordinator, Harris Academy Morden says that before the Jack Petchey tables arrived they were having to turn pupils away due to a lack of tables. “Having the new tables has enabled more pupils to attend the table tennis club. The school has also opened up table tennis clubs during lunchtimes as well which has 20 regular players each lunchtime. The club has helped with managing behaviour during lunchtimes as majority of year 10/11 boys attend the club.”
The benefits of the Jack Petchey table tennis donation scheme on increasing regular table tennis activity are evident: “Since the tables have arrived the popularity of table tennis as a sport has increased at Welling School. I believe that the students would like to play outside of school and some may have already joined clubs or play at home.” said Alex McWhinnie, Head of Faculty, Welling School.
Philippa Lark, Head of PE, at Bentley Wood High School for Girls said: “The students that go to table tennis are not our regular ‘club go-ers’ which really helps us to increase participation across the school and we have begun to develop links with an outside school club.”
A selection of photos are available below and more schools will have the opportunity to apply for tables in Spring 2013, details will be advertised here in 2013.