With the welcome news of a vaccine, the dark days of lockdown should soon be behind us and we’re hopeful that our Ping Pong Parlour project will once again be a regular feature in city shopping centres. All tier levels fortunately allow Ping Pong Parlours to reopen, albeit with restrictions in place, in line with the same advice given to clubs, and this has brought some great new opportunities for the project.

Rainbow Rising

Excitingly, we have welcomed a new Ping Pong Parlour in the Southside Shopping Centre, Wandsworth.

The project has come about as a result of a collaboration with Temporary Aid Solutions (TUAID), a charity that helps transform unused spaces for good causes and their initiative Rainbow Rising which partners with landlords to give charities rent-free temporary accommodation to help unite people and bring communities closer.

Rainbow Rising has taken over the recently vacated Debenhams unit and filled it with numerous projects, including a food parcel service, furniture upcycling scheme, art gallery and of course a Ping Pong Parlour, complete with 3 tables. Manned by volunteers, the Parlour is able to provide free to borrow bats and balls, sanitised after each use.

Shaylesh Patel, Trustee of TUAID, told us:

We’re delighted to be able to host a Ping Pong Parlour in the unit.  Initially people were surprised to discover that it was completely free to play; but once they realised this, they loved it and at least one table is always occupied.  I think people are just so relieved to be able to get out and be together safely, in a way that is within the rules and is fun and active.

It’s a great release after the months of confinement.  Generally everyone has respected the social distancing measures we have put in place and understands the reasons for the rules.

Reopening of Parlours

More fantastic news is that Longton Exchange, Stoke and the Eden Shopping Centre, High Wycombe have already reopened their Parlour doors.  Brooks Shopping, Winchester will reopen within days, followed by more in the new year.  Watch this space for further announcements, follow Ping! on Facebook or keep an eye on the Ping! map.  As always, we welcome the local table tennis community to get involved with Ping Pong Parlours and of course to use the facilities, especially if they have found due to covid-19 their clubs are unable to open at present.  For more information please contact us.