Do you fancy yourself as the next Roger Federer or Serena Williams?
If so then you may be in luck, as one of Mansfield’s oldest sporting associations and the town’s main tennis club is set to bask in a fresh lease of life - with a new state-of-the-art clubhouse.
Mansfield Lawn Tennis Club, based on Pheasant Hill, has been using a former military hut for meetings, events, refreshments and as their changing facilities for almost 100 years.
The current hut was once based at the old Clipstone Army Camp nearby and was used by soldiers training for combat in the First World War.
While there, many of the soldiers played tennis at the club during breaks in training.
But now the club, formed in 1883, can look forward to a bright new future in a facility which will “open up the opportunity to play tennis for hundreds of people” in the town - calling game, set and match on its current hut.
Construction work started on the new club house this week and is expected to take four months.
Nottinghamshire County Council has contributed £50,000 towards the project from its local improvement scheme, with the club meeting the remainder of the costs from its own funds and an interest-free loan from the Lawn Tennis Association.
The new club house will provide disabled facilities for the first time and a veranda viewing area for parents to watch their children during coaching sessions and summer camps.
Sharon Cox-Smith, chairman of the club, has welcomed the clubhouse which she feels will “develop” the both the club and the community.
She said: “Mansfield Lawn Tennis Club has a long history and replacing our ageing club house with a new purpose-built development is a significant moment in that history.
“As a club, we are passionate about the positivity sport produces, how it can help develop people on a personal level and improve health within the community.
“By developing our existing facilities and improving access to grass roots tennis in the process, we can not only benefit our members, but the community as a whole.”
Councillor Joyce Bosnjak, Nottinghamshire County Council member for Mansfield North, who supported the club’s application, said: “The club has been a local institution for the last 136 years.
“It is a real asset to the community that continues to do some outstanding work in promoting tennis and keeping people of all ages healthy.
“I am proud to support their new club house development which will help to attract even more people to play and secure the club’s future for many, many more years to come.”
The club has five hard courts - three of which are floodlit - and four grass courts at its Pheasant Hill base - with the grass courts among a handful that still remain in the county.
As well as being used by its 120 members, the club hosts pay-as-you-play sessions for non-members, coaching programmes for young people, social events, open days and family days, and outreach work in local schools.
The next community event takes place on May 18, from 1pm until 4pm, as part of the LTA Nature Valley Big Tennis Weekend.