Welcome to Old Wilsonians' Tennis Club
Please read the Chairman's note regarding use of the courts, booking of courts and use of the Pavillion during the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic
Commanding views from the top of Hayes Hill (see map) and with adjacent open land, our small and friendly club provides a haven in commuter-belt suburbia. At the same time, being part of the wider Old Wilsonians family of sports clubs means that we enjoy unparalleled facilities and support, including the services of a full-time resident groundsman. We welcome new members, young or old, of all standards, and our Equality & Diversity policy means everyone is treated fairly.
A recently introduced coaching programme by a fully qualified LTA coach is available for those who wish to get the best out of their game, irrespective of age or standard. Providing a safe and encouraging tennis environment is very important to this club. And ensuring that children and youngsters remain safe and protected is a key priority. We have a range of Health & Safety policies and Safeguarding policies to ensure we achieve these aims. To see details of our Colts membership for youngsters please click here.
As a club we strive hard to meet all the differing needs of our members, and have an enthusiastic management committee to achieve this. We care what our members think, and have published management-related policies to ensure that the club is operated and managed in ways that are open, responsive and accountable.
Please click here to see a complete list of policies.
The club has been awarded LTA Clubmark status. In achieving the standards for Clubmark accreditation we have taken many important steps forward in the development and long-term sustainability of our club. Clubmark accreditation effectively says to prospective members that our coaching programme is a quality product. It also confirms that the club’s management is professional and that proper safeguards for the safety and well-being of members, particularly youngsters, are in place and working effectively. It also acknowledges that we have firm plans for the future and are effective in delivering against those plans.
We have six fully equipped floodlit courts and all the benefits of a members-only clubhouse with a well stocked licensed bar. There is something to enjoy all year round, both on and off the court.
As a player at the Old Wilsonians Lawn Tennis Club you will also become a member of a wider family of sports clubs. Indoor sports such as squash and racketball are available, as well as football and cricket. All of the other sports clubs will welcome new members of all ages, whatever your standard. Please ask if you would like further information about membership fees for any of those sports.
If you wish to play tennis, or any of the other sports mentioned, there is certain to be something for you at Old Wilsonians – whether you are a beginner or an experienced player.
Here is what some of our newer members have recently had to say about us:
“Having tried out the club on a few Monday evenings, I would definitely like to become a member. The guys I have played with seem a really nice bunch and the club has a friendly but competitive, atmosphere” (new adult member 2013)
“My son has recently achieved the very top tennis rating possible for a 9 year old in the UK. He is expected to finish the summer 2013 tennis season high up on the overall Kent leader board and in the top 20 for SE England. He began playing tennis at Hawes Down Infant School under the scheme in place with Jake Johnson at Old Wilsonians. I cannot speak highly enough of the work Jake does in teaching tennis to the younger children from Hawes Down and beyond. “ (Colt member)
Please click here if you’d like to know a bit more about the history of the club.
Clubhouse & Bar
The club house changing rooms and showers are open to our members and guests all day. Outside standard club hours the ground and changing rooms are accessible with a security fob provided to all paid-up members.
The licensed bar promotes a warm and friendly atmosphere and enables members of different clubs to socialise and chat with each other. It is open from around 8 p.m. every evening except Fridays. Most weekends the bar is also open at lunchtimes and throughout the afternoon when there is cricket or football to watch from the terrace. On warm evenings telescopic folding doors allow the entire bar area open access onto the terrace, providing an ideal location for a drink in the evening sunshine.
There is also a drinks machine providing tea, coffee and hot chocolate, which can be a pleasant alternative on colder days. There is free WiFi and Sky Sports on the TV. A dartboard and pool table are also available.
Facilities and Activities
We have four newly laid artificial grass courts and three hard courts, all of which are floodlit. There are NO charges for the use of courts, and tennis balls are provided free to members as part of the annual subscription. Light tokens are £4.00 each and provide lighting for 45 minutes on the artificial grass courts and 60 minutes on the hard courts. During club social tennis in the winter, floodlighting costs a nominal £1 per session.
Changing rooms and showers are available in the club house. Additionally, the smaller hut adjacent to the courts provides facilities for making a hot drink, especially welcome on a bright winter morning, as well as offering immediate sanctuary in the event that “rain stops play”.
There is a practice wall and an automatic ball “firing” machine – both of which allow you to practice on your own if that is your preference.
We organise a range of tennis and social events as well as offering coaching to both adults and youngsters alike. Being a very friendly club, the social aspects are just as important as the sporting achievement. We hold a great variety of social events throughout the year, including wine tasting, quiz nights, family discos as well as more formal dinners. Guests are always welcome. There is a great selection of alcoholic drinks on offer, including draft beer and a wide selection of wines and spirits. Non-alcoholic drinks as well as tea coffee and hot chocolate are readily available.
Should you wish to visit and try out the facilities, please just let us know. One of our members will be pleased to show you around – please see the Contact Us page if you would like to arrange this.
We have 7 all weather courts (4 artificial grass and 3 hard) which are available to all members free of charge. Members have the ability to book any of our 7 courts using our online booking system. (Click on the Booking tab and sign in to ClubSpark using your existing login details (which you use when renewing your membership). If you do not already have an account with ClubSpark, please contact Judith Heayberd, Membership Secretary, on firstname.lastname@example.org who will send you an invitation to register.)
We provide a wide range of coaching and competitive opportunities. Whatever your age, if you are just starting to learn or are an experienced player looking to improve your game we cater for your needs. Our Equality & Diversity policy ensures that everyone is treated fairly and with respect.
Jacob Johnson, Head Coach, RAW Tennis
With over sixteen years of experience, a passion to teach and wonderful enthusiasm for the game Jacob has successfully ensured RAW Tennis has fast become one of Kent’s foremost tennis coaching choices – offering group and private coaching programmes for juniors from as young as four years old to adults, incorporating both novice and intermediate players.
Jacob previously coached at the Parklangley club and Sundridge Park LTC before taking a permanent residency at Old Wilsonians in 2013 where he officially launched RAW Tennis. Much of his coaching today focuses on development work with youngsters, bringing them through to team and county level especially with juniors in the Mini Red, Mini Orange and Mini Green categories.
Jacob runs school initiatives where he provides free coaching for children during Spring and Summer terms and optional after-school programmes at Hayes, Pickhurst and Wickham Common in addition to Raglan where he also holds a position all year round for both curriculum and the after-school club.
RAW Tennis programs for adults and children run during term-time and the super popular junior multi-sports camps are held when schools are out. Membership of the Old Wilsonians is compulsory for Juniors to join the programme. Coaching sessions cost from just £5 for 45 minutes and £6.60 for 60 minutes. Adults can join the programme as non-members although membership is encouraged – they can then benefit from the perks available within a wider multi-sports club. Individual coaching is £25 per hour and for more than two people from £30. All of the coaches are licenced, qualified, DBS checked and hold relevant first aid qualifications.
To enquire about coaching at OWLTC
please contact email@example.com or call 07563 603822
Historically most of our juniors have come from coaching initiatives or were introduced to tennis by parents who were members of the club. Junior members have priority use of the hard courts most of the time. There are junior coaching programmes on Thursday and Friday evenings and Saturday mornings.
We actively encourage our more experienced junior members to join in adult tournaments and adult club sessions to assist in their development. This helps to prepare them for to play in inter-club matches, both friendly and league games, when they are ready and keen to do so.
Competitions and Social
If you have a competitive streak you might wish to consider playing in one of our teams in inter-club competitions. We enter Men’s, Ladies’ and Mixed teams in the North Kent League as well as some teams in the Kent League. We have a Veterans’ team too.
We play regular inter-club friendly matches and run a singles box league for members. These allow us to ensure there is good competition, whatever your standard.
We hold regular club tournaments. Whilst the annual Club Tournament attracts our more serious players, most of the other tournaments are largely intended for fun. For example, the George Rice trophy is a mixed doubles competition completed on one day, where the combined ages of the 2 players must be at least 100. The Handicap Tournament includes singles, doubles and mixed, and the handicaps applied make the matches more competitive, giving everybody a chance. This encourages wider participation and helps members to meet and play with others who they might not usually see or play with.
Alternatively, if you are looking to play just for fun – to get some exercise and enjoy the fresh air – you’ll be able to come along to our club sessions. These take place every Saturday afternoon from 2 p.m Play consists of short matches played with other club members on a rotating basis. Organising regular American tournaments at these sessions provides an alternative structure at these club sessions. Afterwards you can retire to the bar for drinks and a chat.
Tennis balls are provided free of charge and floodlighting (when needed) is a nominal £1 charge.
The Old Wilsonians' Association and the Old Wilsonians' Lawn Tennis Club (OWLTC) are not-for-profit organisations.