'Pay and play' tennis courts could be opened in Scarborough and Whitby under new 'Tennis Strategy'

A number of “pay and play” tennis courts could be opened in Scarborough and Whitby as part of a drive to encourage people in the borough to take up the sport.

'Pay and play' tennis courts could be opened in Scarborough and Whitby.
'Pay and play' tennis courts could be opened in Scarborough and Whitby.

Scarborough Council, in conjunction with the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA), has just completed its new Tennis Strategy which will help to develop the sport locally for the next 15 years.

Following a consultation with local tennis clubs and players across the borough, one of the highlighted issues was the lack of pay and play courts, where members of the public can turn up without being a member and play there and then.

Among the courts proposed are replacements for the facilities lost when the Filey Road Sports Centre in Scarborough closed in 2017 following the opening of the Scarborough Sports Village at Weaponness.

The site of the former sports centre is now earmarked for the development of houses and apartments.

Scarborough Council’s cabinet recommended on Tuesday that the strategy be approved by the full council, when it meets again next year.

The councillors were told that there were two specific schemes for pay for play courts which fell under the responsibility of the council, one each in Whitby and Scarborough.

A report prepared for the cabinet stated: “The Whitby scheme relates to the disused tennis courts at Whitby Leisure Centre.

“These are currently outside of the Leisure Operating Contract with Everyone Active, although there is provision within the contract for the management of the courts to be included in the contract if these are brought back into use at any point in the future.

“Funding options for this scheme will be the subject of a separate report.

“An option to develop four new pay and play courts on the Scarborough College site is currently being considered as part of the development proposals for the Filey Road development.

“This is currently being assessed through the planning process.

“Notwithstanding the outcome of that process, the strategy recognises that four pay and play would be required as appropriate replacement court provision in order to ‘unlock’ the Filey Road Sports Centre site for redevelopment purposes.

“All options for making such provision, including the present proposal, should be further explored off the back of the strategy.”

The need for the strategy came after concerns were raised by the LTA and Sport England following the closure of the Filey Road Sports Centre and the decision not to include any tennis courts as part of the replacement Sports Village.