We are very lucky to support some fantastic clubs around the country and the enormous work and effort many of them put into Table Tennis is quite amazing! We are going to feature some of the clubs we know well over the coming season – so watch out for one near you!
Portishead is a Table Tennis England Premier Club. It was established in 1946.
It has around 60 members of all ages – the youngest is 10 and the oldest in his 80s.
The club encourages members of all ages and ability ranges. New members are always welcome.
The club plays matches at the Portishead Lake Grounds and at Walton Hall. It also has regular training nights at Gordano School.
It currently has 14 adult teams and four junior teams playing in the British League, the Bristol and District League, The Weston-Super-Mare League, the National Junior League, and the Bristol Junior League.
The club was recently named as the South West Region’s first ever Club of the Year in the Pride of Table Tennis Awards, beating off competition from hundreds of others throughout Gloucestershire, Wiltshire, Avon, Somerset, Devon, Dorset and Cornwall.
As South West winner, Portishead has now been shortlisted for Table Tennis England’s National Pride of Table Tennis Awards, where the winner will be announced on March 30 in Leicester.
South West regional chairman, Jos Kelly, who made the presentation at Gordano School, said: “Portishead Table Tennis Club seems to have burst on to the scene in a big way.
The club’s drive and energy to promote the sport, and also bring its many benefits to the local community, has seen it grow at a tremendous rate and attract new players from all age groups.
Many of the innovations of the last couple of years have been overseen by Portishead Club Development Officer, Derek Connop, who said: “We are absolutely delighted to be
named regional club of the year. It is particularly special as this is the first time such an award has been made under the Pride of Table Tennis Awards banner. We have made huge leaps forward in our table tennis offering in the last year and we are proud to continue to promote and grow the sport in our local area.”
Connop, himself, was named South West Region Volunteer of the Year in the same competition and has been shortlisted for the 2019 National Award.
The Portishead innovations that so impressed the judges included:
• Seven Portishead members attending courses to become Table Tennis England grade one coaches;
• The club launching regular Monday evening coaching sessions at a local youth centre;
• In partnership with Gordano School, setting up a regular after-school table tennis club attended by more than 30 youngsters;
• Establishing a 15-table regular club training night, which even attracts players from other clubs;
• Recording what the club believes is the best-ever member satisfaction score in a Table Tennis England national survey;
• Making history by competing in the British League – the UK’s premier club competition – for the first time in Portishead’s 72-year history.
• Providing the local Bristol Table Tennis League with the most teams entered in both the winter and summer league competitions.
• Entering the Weston Table Tennis League in 2017-18 and doubling the entry in 2018-19.
• Entering three teams in the 2017‐2018 Bristol Junior League, finishing first and second in Division 1;
• Entering two teams in the 2018‐2019 National Junior League and two teams in the Bristol Junior League.
Chatham TTC is a three star Premier Club founded in 1999 to give opportunity and coaching to youngsters in Medway, Kent.
The club prides themselves on being able to provide Table Tennis to all ages and abilities every Friday Evening (Juniors from 5.30-7.30 and Adults 7.30-10pm) in a casual and friendly way.
Home for Chatham TTC is the purpose-built Table Tennis Centre at the Howard School (Derwent Way, Rainham, Kent ME8 0BX) which was opened in 2005.
The Table Tennis Centre has 10 tables ready to use, kitchen, viewing area and changing facilities.
An important part of their outreach is working in local schools so that as many children as possible can learn to play at a young age.
In 2017 the Under 11 Girls team from the Pilgrim School became National Champions, this was through the coaching and hard work of Roger Chipperfield one of the club’s coaches.
In 2018 Roger was rewarded for all his enthusiastic and dedicated work when he was presented with the ‘Coach of the Year’ award at the National Championships!
Chatham TTC also enter a number of teams in the local Medway Towns League and also have players competing in both the National Junior League and Junior British League competitions.
The club have recently invited Craig Bryant from (Top Edge Table Tennis) along to run his ‘Service Day’ to help improve club members play and they have also held a First Aid training evening…
Club Chairman and Senior Coach Trevor Towers ‘We thank Bribar TT for supporting our club and Junior players over many years. We would recommend them to anyone looking for great Table Tennis Equipment’.
Morpeth Table Tennis Club was created in 2011 following a huge investment by the English Table Tennis Association and Tower Hamlets – the aim being to provide a much needed quality Table Tennis facility in London.
The club is open Monday to Friday from 6pm with coaching, open play and competition available and also from 10am to 4pm on Saturday’s.
Morpeth TTC’s community targets include junior coaching with free sessions twice a week for local players through to supporting performance level play for their National Junior girl champion.
Working with the local authority, Morpeth TTC have supported coaches going into 5 local secondary schools over the past 3 years and they are currently liaising with Tower Hamlets to run a series of ‘Taster Sessions’ to schools and clubs in the local – including a ‘Women and Girls’ event.
As a focus for the Table Tennis community, it’s no surprise that Morpeth TTC are the largest supporter of the local league with 16 teams and will look to support club members with subsidised fees/kit when playing for the club.
The club is also heavily involved with hosting local events through to entering teams into the British League. Events include: National Cadet League, National Junior League, Jack Petchey Foundation, National Schools Championships, London Youth Organisation, UK Chinese Association, UK Hungarian Association plus Table Tennis England UKCC1 and First Aid Courses!
Morpeth TTC is an inclusive club with members from all sections of the community along with a number of disabled players who are looking at competing nationally – overall the club’s initial target for members was quickly met and is continuing to grow.
Sponsorship – TIBHAR/Bribar Table Tennis
John Payne, Club Chairman ‘The club is now sponsored by TIBHAR who understand the importance of club collaboration, across the UK and Europe. This deal was negotiated through Bribar who have a long standing successful relationship with the club’.
A recent training camp with the excellent coach and ex Top 20 ranked player in the world Lucjan Blaszczyk, was a huge success and hopefully a sign of things to come..
You can catch up more with Morpeth TTC’s activities here on their facebook page.
Established in 2011, Torbay Table Tennis Academy is a thriving club based in Torquay, South Devon. Located in an area of outstanding natural beauty, the area is often compared with the French Riviera!
Kris and Jo Piwowar started the Academy with a Saturday session and on just five tables. However, with over 20 years of playing and coaching experience in Poland and the UK, the news of the quality coaching at the Academy soon spread… new members started to join and it was not long before the club was at near capacity.
These days, a large part of TTTA’s coaching work takes place in local schools and they run three after school clubs. They have also entered into partnerships with two Sports Colleges, this has allowed for a fast expansion of sessions into two new venues – today the club runs coaching sessions five days a week, in a number of locations and with fourteen tables available!
With all the additional activity and coaching, Kris and Jo are now helped by another UKCC Level 1 coach and five assistant coaches, three of which are currently undertaking the Level 1 coaching course. TTTA’s planning and hard work has paid off by achieving Table Tennis England Premier Club status in 2012, followed by a Star and Club Mark accreditation – all whilst the club expanded into a new venue…
Working with Torquay Academy they have added Table Tennis to the school curriculum (as a core subject to Years 7 and 8), giving the club the opportunity to feed these pupils into the club training sessions.
With the facilities and great atmosphere provided by the partners at Torquay Academy and Paignton Community and Sports Academy, this has greatly enhanced the experience of the membership at training sessions. This in turn has led to a rapid growth of new members and players locally who attend regularly to take advantage of the high quality of coaching available – once again TTTA are approaching the limits in space and tables – a nice problem to have!
A speciality of Kris and Jo is their work with cadets and juniors, where the coaches have created a performance and talent group for promising players to receive extra time with the coaches during each week.
TTTA’s coaches believe that an early start is very important, therefore they have opened a separate session for very young children from five years old – the mini Table Tennis club called Busy Bees! This group, is run two days a week with great enthusiasm/patience and potential has been spotted in several of the youngsters which, it is hoped, will lead to rapid progress through the club ranks and onto competing in the National Cadet and Junior Leagues.
The club also caters for Senior and Veteran players, with six teams competing in the local South Devon and Torbay Leagues – a long way from the beginning when the club was only able to enter one team!
TTTA’s further ambition is for the club to expand the sport to allow more people to enjoy Table Tennis for fitness, social interaction, and/or for just sheer enjoyment…
The TTTA is based in an area of deprivation, and to this end, the club makes a determined effort to help by offering a subsidised low cost way of getting into Table Tennis for local youngsters.
Jo and Kris, kindly commented on the partnership with Bribar ‘From the very earliest days of the club, a consistent and friendly ally has been the Table Tennis equipment distributor Bribar Table Tennis, who with great warmth and knowledge, have supported the club at every turn providing their brands, Joola and Tibhar to the club making our players very distinct in the area.’
‘The club acknowledges with gratitude their support and in particular the sponsorship of three of our youngest players, Jakub Piwowar, Herbie Sage and Daniel Barnett, as they work their way through National and Regional competitions.’
Swerve Table Tennis Club is quite a story!
Swerve was the vision of Club Chairman, Paul Warters, who wanted to create a Dedicated Table Tennis Training Facility with a Head Coach to lead the way!
To get things started Paul secured a facility with fantastic potential, the soon to be demolished largest youth club in Middlesbrough and with top coach Steve Brunskill on board (formerly head coach at Ormesby TTC) they set to work to create Swerve Table Tennis Club.
Swerve opened its doors in September 2013 and only three years later they are not only established but have captured the imagination of the local community and the wider Table Tennis world.
As a warm and welcoming club, it’s not surprising that their club numbers have rocketed but this is also down to the hard work they have put into starting and delivering satellite clubs in local schools and in setting up a Table Tennis Academy in close conjunction with Middlesbrough College.
As you would expect, Swerve TTC are a Premier Club and are looking to expand this with further work with disabled players. They currently have seven coaches delivering sessions and travelling with players for tournaments. Having enough trained volunteers is crucial in maintaining one of the clubs core aims of ‘offering unparalleled opportunities for the local community.’
The club currently delivers up to 22 hours of coaching at a very reasonable £15/25 per week and the sessions are always to a high standard. Swerve currently have twenty players nationally ranked with Lucy Gent holding the National U/10 title, Alec Ward ranked no 6 in the Junior Boys and Sophie Barlow ranked no 8 in the Junior Girls to name but a few…
What sets Swerve’s facilities apart is being able to offer two training halls, a one-to-one practice room, its own gym, fitness studio, physio room and changing facilities and that’s just the ground floor!
On the first floor you will find a casual social café seating area, with views over the training hall and a fully equipped kitchen. There’s also a club members social room complete with pool table, dart board and mini TT table!
Having recently gained a Table Tennis England grant the club were able to upgrade the main training hall lighting and this has made a big improvement to the playing conditions.
And if that wasn’t enough, Swerve can offer residential places for training camps with up to fourteen players and two coaches able to stay at the club. With three highly successful ‘sold out’ Summer training camps under their belts and with top coaches from Bulgaria and Malta attending plus our very own Paul Drinkhall lending his experience… it’s clear to see that the club is setting the training bar high!
Swerve has now built up a strong presence in the Junior British League with one boy’s team and two girl’s teams and in the Senior British league they have two teams currently sat at the top looking for promotion – watch this space.
Bribar are Swerve’s official club sponsors supplying Joola equipment and Club Chairman Paul says, ‘having the support from all the staff at Bribar has helped the club develop in the right ways, ranging from on-going technical support, to equipping the teams with clothing – it’s a winning combination and we are looking forward to continuing for the long term!’
Bishop Auckland Table Tennis Club
Founded in 2012 Bishop Auckland Table Tennis club started life as a weekly 1-hour session in a small dance studio. The club now runs sessions every night of the week both in Bishop Auckland and all across south Durham. These sessions include Junior Beginners, Talent ID, Performance squads, Adult Coaching, Over 50’s sessions, social play, disability sessions and Alzheimer’s sessions. Along with working with several secondary and primary schools which feed into the coaching sessions.
The club is a Table Tennis England 4-star ability Premier Club and has club
mark status; the only one in the North East. The main home for the club is a newly refurbished hall at Bishop Barrington School, having just spent £30,000 turning our hall into a table tennis centre with 12 Tibhar tables and Taraflex flooring.
We pride ourselves on offering a welcoming and friendly environment, with table tennis for all ages and all abilities throughout the community. As part of the club’s community commitment, the club runs a volunteer training programme to help to provide training opportunities to members which has seen the clubs coaching team go from 1 coach to 17 coaches, 7 level 2 and 10 levels 1s. We have also run County Umpires training and an Aerobic Table Tennis Instructors course.
On top of the clubs coaching sessions, the club has players competing in National Tournaments, teams in Senior British League, Junior British League and National Junior and Cadet Leagues, and the local league. Furthermore, the club also runs 3 national 2-star tournaments a year and a disability Grand Prix, all of which provide a pathway for players to improve.
During school holidays we provide open training camps with our most recent Bishop Auckland Bribar Summer Camp benefitting from the skills of Craig Bryant, Stephen Gertsen and Mark Simpson, all providing coaching at the club for a week for the incredible cost of just £60 to the players.
One of the club’s core values is to support the wider community. We have undertaken a number of charity events over the years in aid of a number of charitable organisations. We’re proud to have adopted the Alzheimer’s Society as our charity of the year and will continue to support the charity with events as well as Pink Pong UK.
Over the years the club has seen its growth and development awarded: With the club winning South Durham Dales Junior sports club of the Year and County Durham Junior Club of the year along with Matt Porter winning Coach of the year in 2013. In 2014 club volunteer Carol Rodway won Table Tennis England Volunteer of the year, and Matt Porter won Coach of the year. In the same year the club was runner up in the Northern Echo Sports club of the year, losing out to Sunderland Ladies FC. This year the club was honoured with winning Table Tennis England National Club of the Year!
We’re proud to have support from Bribar Table Tennis and Tibhar, who we have been with since 2012. We couldn’t be happier with the Tibhar range of products, the quality is excellent, we’re now known for our striking green kit! The support from Bribar has been fantastic, the customer service is fantastic, we always know we get a straight answer no sales talk and their passion for Table Tennis and its development clearly shows though their support.
Cleeve Park Table Tennis Club is one of the fastest growing clubs in the South East! Based at Cleeve Park School in Sidcup, Kent, they are a thriving club with over 80 members of all ages and abilities.
A quick history
After Kemnal TTC closed in 2016 a number of club members, including Kent County players Phil Cox and Chris Bartram, looked to start a new club in an alternative venue. Having found an accommodating school and a hall with real potential for Table Tennis… things have taken off!
The Cleeve Park facility has the ingredients required for a modern Table Tennis facility – the playing conditions are excellent with 15 brand new TIBHAR tables, bright LED lighting, a quality wooden floor and during the summer of 2016 the hall was painted to Table Tennis England specifications.
Open for play
The club has open practice sessions three times a week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and during the winter league season the club is also open on Tuesday nights.
Cleeve Park caters for beginner’s right through to International players and the focus of the club is on keen Table Tennis players that wish to improve as well as enjoy the company of like-minded players.
The club has experienced a very rapid growth in its junior coaching and development so much so that they have had to recruit more coaches to meet demand. The coaching team put a premium on young players showing enthusiasm to play the sport, to learn and improve and this year the club has entered three teams into the National Junior League.
Adult members can practice 3 or 4 nights a week at the club and players of a competitive nature can sign up to play in one of their many teams involved in all divisions of both the Bromley and North West Kent leagues.
Summer Training Camps
This summer Cleeve Park ran three successful training camps – with plenty of fun, coaching, training, and top tips! These camps have helped develop the young players and adults alike and given them a head start for the new season.
Cleeve Park will be hosting its first Junior Invitation Tournament on Sunday 15th October 2017, the format starts with groups of 5/6 players, moving on to another group, offering plenty of matches through-out the day. You can see the entry form here.
Chris Bartram, Committee member:
‘From the original meeting in the pub of whether the new club could work or even pay for itself it is now thriving and every night tables are full. There is a real buzz and real credit should go to all the committee, especially Tony Anand, as anyone running such a large club knows how much work is needed behind the scenes as well as front of house to make it a success.’
‘We’d also like to thank Bribar Table Tennis and TIBHAR for their support with the new club equipment – it has been a great help in creating the excellent facility we now have.’
Byng Hall Table Tennis Club is one of the few Advanced Level, 4 Star Premier Club’s in the country and was the South East winner of the 2007/08 Club of the Year Award presented by the English Table Tennis Association.
Byng Hall TTC (named after the hall it was originally founded at in 1990). It is now based at St Johns C of E Primary School in Tunbridge Wells. View map
The club focuses on all aspects of the game but also values good club spirit and a sense of belonging. The club makes use of up to 10 tables and over 50 individuals (aged 6 to 80) benefit from our five sessions that we offer every week.
The club boasts some of the county’s top players in the Under 11, Under 13, U15 and U18’s as well as top senior men, women and Vetts.
The Club’s greatest achievers to date are the 2016 Paralympic GOLD medallist, the 2012 Paralympic silver medallist, world champion 2014 and World ranked No 1 Will Bayley MBE who started his playing career age 11 at the club where he went on to be National senior champion as a junior before progressing to the dizzy heights of an international super star!
The club currently supports 2 British League teams, 1 Women’s and 1 Junior. We also regularly run one of the South East Regional National Junior and National Cadet League divisions as well as hosting regional qualifiers for National events and championships.
Club Chairman and founder Gary Howes: ‘We have had a great relationship with Bribar Table Tennis down the years and would always recommend them to anyone looking for great quality Table Tennis equipment’
For more information on Byng Hall’s activities please visit their website
|Joola||Tibhar||Table Tennis England|
|VETTS||Table Tennis PRSS
|Bishop Auckland TTC||Joola Morpeth TTC
||Joola Plymouth TTC|
|Cleeve Park TTC||Cliffedale Chandlers TTC||North Ayrshire TTC|
|Swerve TTC||Blitz TTC||Torbay TT Academy|
|The Warriors TTC||Canterbury & District TTA||Weald TTC|
|Top Edge TT||Burton Uxbridge TTC||Knighton Park TTC|
|Byng Hall TTC||Guernsey TTA||Ellenborough TTC|
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