Ping! will grow again this year, as for the first time South Norfolk and Portsmouth welcome the tables offering even more people the chance to play free table tennis in their community spaces.
The Ping! initiative has evolved over the past 8 years from a six-week summer festival into a year-round mission to help people lead active, well-balanced lives by introducing table tennis into the spaces they already spend time.
Supported by National Lottery, Government and Local Authority funding, Ping! places free to play ping pong tables in public spaces all over England and by providing bats and balls on tables, the game is made accessible for everyone to play and enjoy.
There are now hundreds of easy to access and free to play tables nationwide all year round, but it’s the summer months when the outdoor tables really come to life as the Ping! festival re-launches. In 2017 over 745 tables were played on in public spaces of 24 towns and cities, with 1.5 MILLION visits to the tables over the summer and nearly 200 social events held.
New Ping! locations
This summer two new areas of England will be joining existing Ping! cities to bring the ping pong extravaganza to their communities.
Ping! Pompey will receive 12 tables to be placed in central locations including: Guildhall Square, Gunwharf Quays, Lakeside North Harbour, Hilsea Lido and the seafront. The aim is to target Portsmouth’s inactive residents and integrate table tennis into the community.
Cllr Luke Stubbs, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Adult Social Care at Portsmouth City Council said;
I’m excited for Ping Pompey to launch and think it will be a popular activity in the city. Table tennis is something that everyone can get involved in and has many health benefits. Having places that people can play for free across the city is another boost to our physical activity offering.
Ping! South Norfolk will be on a slightly smaller scale. Six-tables will be placed across the various parishes, and will form a ‘roadshow’ at various show events including the popular South Norfolk on Show. As the area’s population is older than national averages, the South Norfolk Council recognise that helping people to remain active into later life brings clear health and social benefits. In the long term they hope to be able to develop the project and take table tennis into other settings such as care homes.
To find your nearest Ping! location, visit the Ping! website
Ping! National Launch
Table Tennis England will launch the 9th annual Ping! festival season in May with an event in Nottingham’s Old Market Square.
Already a champion of Ping! and a hub of table tennis nationally, Nottingham has been selected as this year’s flagship location and national launch venue. The event will be held on Saturday 19th May in the iconic Old Market Square. It’s Royal Wedding day so look out for plenty of royal references! There’ll be novelty tables, professional players, a table tennis robot and loads of opportunities to pick up a bat and play. The fun starts at 10am, and everyone is encouraged to come along.