Rain stops play! Wetherby Castlegarth Tennis Club counting cost of deluge

Flooded courts at Wetherby Castlegarth Tennis Club
Flooded courts at Wetherby Castlegarth Tennis Club
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Wetherby Castlegarth Tennis Club is facing up to three months without a ball being hit in anger after flooding devastated its courts and clubhouse.

Heavy rains from storms Desmond and Frank over the Christmas holidays saw a deluge of water flood into the club, based just off the River Wharfe.

The force of the water ripped down fencing around the club’s six tennis courts and caused more than £25,000 of damage.

Wetherby’s committee are holding an emergency meeting this week.

“We flood quite often but this time, the damage has just been horrendous,” said committee member Jo Coverdale.

“It’s unprecedented. I have never seen anything like it.

The damage to the fencing at the club

The damage to the fencing at the club

“It was so substantial it actually flooded our clubhouse by three feet. We have an Arctic fridge freezer in the clubhouse which was turned over inside.

“I know we are only a club, but the impact on the sporting community is massive.”

Wetherby has more than 350 members as well as a thriving junior set-up run by Angela Crossley, who was named the Lawn Tennis Association’s coach of the year in 2014.

More than 30 members started the clean up at the Scott Lane club on December 28 and the fire service has also assisted in pumping water from the courts.

Volunteers start the clean up mission including head coach Angela Crossley (pictured)

Volunteers start the clean up mission including head coach Angela Crossley (pictured)

Safety officers have been assessing the damage to the floodlights.

“I don’t know what it’s going to cost us to get up and running. We have 350 members that want to get back playing in January,” Coverdale added.

“I can’t see us being properly back up and running until March but we are trying to be optimistic and saying February half term.

“We are not sure whether we are insured for the fencing around the courts. It’s going to cost around £24,000 if we’re not insured for it.”

Collingham and Boston Spa Tennis Clubs have stepped in to offer support to the club and provided court slots for the academy.

However, there is uncertainty over whether the Winter Floodlit League, hosted by Wetherby, will take place.

Players from Boroughbridge, Starbeck and Rufforth take part in the league and Coverdale hoped the competition would still go ahead at Boston Spa.