Coaches complete three peaks challenge
Tennis club coaches enjoy a knock-about at the summits of Ben Nevis, Snowdon and Scafell Pike
Coaches from Rutherglen Lawn Tennis Club have become the first people to play tennis at the peak of Britain’s tallest mountains.
Jonny Willcox, Cedric Decuyper, Jacob Jacob and club president Gareth Ellor completed the three peaks challenge on June 5 by climbing to the top of Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis within 24 hours.
But in a twist to the usual gruelling challenge, the four men played a game of tennis at the top of each mountain.
Dubbed Expedition Mountennis, the challenge is a highlight of the tennis club’s ReturnToSplendour campaign, which aims to save the derelict tennis courts at Burnside Bowling Club.
Located around the corner from Rutherglen’s existing grounds, the Burnside courts would allow the tennis club to expand and cater to the needs of its membership which has more than doubled in the past few years.
Taking to the mountains to raise awareness of and cash for their plight, the foursome completed their challenge despite very hot conditions.
Gareth said: “It was incredibly hot so it was pretty gruelling and obviously we had to carry all our equipment as well.
“I think the main thing for us was seeing the looks on people’s faces when we were setting up the tennis court.
“The reaction was amazing and it was a lot of fun. People were keen to have a shot and everyone got into the spirit of things.
“It was fantastic to see people having so much fun playing tennis in such unique and picturesque locations. The looks on their faces when they saw what we were doing and started setting-up each court was a real joy.”
ReturnToSplendour aims through fundraising, existing club funds and grant applications to raise the £200,000 necessary to complete the works at Burnside. This includes replacing the existing artificial grass carpet, replacing fencing, upgrading the floodlights and building a modest clubhouse.
Last week the club submitted a planning application for the improvements to South Lanarkshire Council and is urging local residents to air their support for the initiative either via the local authority’s online planning portal, or in writing.
Should the planning and funding applications be successful, Rutherglen Lawn Tennis Club will be have a sevencourt facility capable of delivering an expansive schools programme and disability tennis.
To date, the Mountennis climbers have raised £2,500 and people are able to donate to the campaign by logging on to www. gofundme.com/rkucuqk4. Half of the cash rased will be donated to Sport Relief, a national charity that supports communities in the UK and around the world.
Landscape A picture with a view
Peak Another mountain challenged