FUNDING for improvements to tennis courts worth around half a million pounds have been approved by Bridgend council this week, allocated to replace or refurbish a total of nine courts across the county borough.
The funding of over half a million pounds will be made up of £328,000 from the Lawn Tennis Association, and matched with £191,000 from Bridgend council, from their Community Asset Transfer Fund.
The proposal was approved unanimously at a cabinet meeting on March 14, for tennis courts that had been assessed in four areas of Bridgend, including three at Maesteg Welfare Park, two at Heol-y-Cyw Playing Fields, and two at Caedu Park, in Ogmore Vale.
There will also be funding set aside as part of the project for the development of two brand new courts in Porthcawl, to replace to existing courts in Griffin Park, which are set to be demolished as part of the new sea-front development.
Funding from the Lawn Tennis Association was given as part of a £21.9 million grant directly from UK Government’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, aimed at improving tennis courts based in public parks across the UK.
Council bosses in Bridgend were asked to grant a change in the terms and conditions of their Community Asset Transfer fund, allowing it to be used for match funding which would not have previously met the criteria.
Council leader Huw David said: “We’ve made big strides now in terms of the sport being a very inclusive sport, open to people of all backgrounds, ages, genders and identities, and this is very much part of that effort by the Lawn Tennis Associated and Tennis Wales to encourage more people to participate in this sport.”
Cabinet member for regeneration Neelo Farr said while the grant would not go towards refurbishing the courts in Porthcawl’s Griffin Park, it would help honour the commitment made by the authority to replace them.
She said: “Griffin Park was part of the regeneration plans. We made a commitment that we were going to replace the tennis courts in Griffin Park so this funding will go towards keeping that promise.”
The decision follows the announcement of a major new tennis centre and swimming pool that has also been approved in Bridgend at Island Farm, Ewenny Road.