Canterbury Area Pickleball Club
The Garden Of England
Pickleball has been taking off in the past few years in Kent, “The Garden of England,” with Canterbury Area Pickleball, the latest club to establish itself in the region.
Lisa Evans, who was involved in setting up the Canterbury club, previously helped start a club in Ramsgate, Kent, about seven years ago, which is still running.
Polo Farm Sports Club, Canterbury
“We’re actually doing a session at Polo Farm on August 17. It’s an Ed Glover charity event for a young lad that passed away last year, so we’re doing two courts of pickleball up there for a charity event.”
Canterbury Area Pickleball held its first festival in June at the University of Kent, proving a massive success.
Evans, herself from Canterbury, reflected: “It went really well. We advertised for 80, and I think we had about 90 in the end.
George Clooney, Kim Kardashian and Ellen DeGeneres are all fans! https://t.co/7xEPAOWnRl— Kentish Gazette (@KentishGazette) July 8, 2023
“We had a beginners’ court for ‘newbies’ to try it out, then we had professional coaching sessions for people who hadn’t been playing for long.”
Funds were raised for a charity called Friends of Thai Daughters.
No Excuses When Pickleball’s On The Menu!
There is also a competitive element: Evans has competed in the UK and Europe and has won medals of all colors.
She said, “I have been playing for nine years. Previously, I was a qualified BoxFit and running coach.”
“People say ‘I can’t do that because I have pickleball,’ whereas before, with boxing or running, people would say ‘I can’t come tonight because I’m washing my hair’ or ‘the dog’s hurt his foot’ – all these silly excuses. But no one drops off from pickleball.“
Pickleball has given Evans the chance to travel as well.
“I went to Ireland to play in a little village, and I won gold with my partner in the mixed doubles and gold with my women’s doubles partner. That was about four or five years ago. I’ve also won gold in Spain and other medals out in Amsterdam.”
Canterbury Area Pickleball plays on Tuesday evenings but hopes to start on Thursday nights as well.
A Huge Success
Telford Pickleball Club’s first-ever Sunday morning session was a huge success, with many players turning up to participate.
The weekly sessions will take place at a new community club based at the Holy Trinity Academy school in Priorslee.
Alison Lynch, a club founder, was delighted with how successful the first session was.
She said, “It was great to see so many people turn up to the first sessions on Sunday morning. We provide all the equipment needed, and it’s a great way to get fit and have fun, as well as being a great way to meet new people from the town.”
The English Open
The club runs the sessions on Wednesday evenings and Sunday mornings, with further sessions planned. They offer individual and group coaching and welcome beginners of all ages.
Pickleball England has also announced that its flagship international tournament, The English Open, will be held at the Telford International Centre this year.
The sport’s governing body reported Telford will organize the event. The best players from around the world will converge on the International Centre from August 3 to 6.
Telford Pickleball Club hopes holding the English Open in Telford will raise local awareness and prompt a new wave of interest in the sport.
We’ve also featured pickleball in the United Kingdom in these other great articles.
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