Street Squash Club has teamed up with two local schools in a bid to boost the sport after scooping a £50,000 grant from Sport England.
The funds, part of the Inspired Facilities scheme, will be used to refurbish the club’s facilities and help safeguard the future of the sports in the area.
Tony Milford of Street Squash Club said: “Our idea in applying for the grant was to increase participation in squash and racketball among women and children. If we can introduce more children and women in what has been a traditionally male sport it should mean the sport can remain more viable in the future. The grant will hopefully guarantee the viability of the club for the next ten years”.
To help make the club’s idea a reality, Mr Milford contacted both Crispin and Strode College in the hope of getting more young people involved.
Shonagh Butler, of Strode College said: “My involvement in this project came about through my role at Strode College as Head of Sports and Enrichment, and my involvement in the Victoria Squash Club. One of the club’s objectives for this project is to increase participation of young people and females, so Strode College is working with the club to get more young people involved in playing squash. We are taking part in a six-week ‘Sportivate’ project at the club, funded by the Somerset Activities Sports Partnership. We have also contributed £500 to the project. Fourteen of our students are attending the club to learn and develop their squash and racketball skills and, when the project is over, we hope they will continue the sport as a college enrichment activity and maybe also join the squash club”.
Mrs Gibson, Head of PE at Crispin, said the school was thrilled with the injection of much needed funds: “Squash is a fast paced, athletic and fun game which many pupils at Crispin really enjoy. Some play at league level and have used squash as part of their GCSE PE grade. We hope to further our work with the club in order to increase the number of players in the coming years”.
The grant will go towards improving the courts, changing rooms and creating an entrance to the courts without having to walk outside making it more appealing to both new and existing members.
It is hoped that the refurbishment work will begin in February and be completed by June.
*Article courtesy of the Central Somerset Gazette
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