News: News 25-05-2020


Thrilling Action Once Again

Members were out in force last Monday, enjoying the glorious sunshine and even more, the thrill of hitting forehands, backhands and using all our other exciting tennis skills. The early and very keen players to be back in action were Martin and Harry O’ Rourke followed by twins Cesar and Andres Leal. Two of the first ladies to grace the courts were Mary Jo O’ Farrell and Anna Walsh, Rose Costello and Mary O’ Neill were also early hitters, ladies the camera never lies. Pat Conway and Dave Costello, The Mc Carthy and Del Saz Palos Families participated in some friendly action also. Members are reminded that Phase 1 of the Guidelines are to be observed. Hopefully COVID 19 will be very soon, just HISTORY.

 Membership Forms

Membership forms for existing new members can be downloaded from our web site with bank details included. Arrangement about providing fobs will follow for new members soon afterwards.

 Club Nights

During Phase 1 of the current restrictions club nights are suspended. Members are free to book the courts and play singles matches instead.

 Athlone GAA Tennis Club.

 The following report in the May 2nd 1970 Westmeath Independent states, "Good news for all tennis enthusiasts this week was the formation of a new Tennis Club in Athlone.”  The officers and committee elected at that historic meeting were:  President: Rev Fr Harte, Chairman: Mr E. Costello, Vice Chairman: Mr P Rohan, Secretary: Miss Ida Smyth, Assistant Secretary: Mrs Madigan, Treasurer Mr E. Kelly, Assistant Treasurer Miss Lorna Burke.

Committee: Miss S Kelly, Mrs Mc Carty, Mrs Keary, Mr Butler, Mr T Finn, Mr Kieran Connolly, Mr E Stanley, Miss Mary Sweeney. It was known as Athlone GAA Tennis Club until 1991. Not much is known about the first twenty years of the club as there are no minutes of meetings or correspondence in our possession or on file.

 Athlone Tennis Club

 The earliest correspondence we have of activity within Athlone Tennis Club is a letter dated 10th April 1991. This letter from Luke Walsh, Tennis Chairperson, to John Cummins, Chairperson Athlone GAA, states “At a public meeting held on the 12th December 1991 a committee was formed with a view to setting up an independent tennis club in Athlone.” This was formally ratified by the signing of an agreement dated 8th September 1992 by the Chairpersons previously mentioned.

 According to the minutes of Athlone Tennis Club’s AGM of the 21st October 1993, Luke “outlined the future options for the Tennis Club. They were as follows:

  1. The Sports Complex, (sic) Athlone Regional Sports Centre
  2. The Rugby Club Land
  3. The Leisure Centre
  4. The purchase of land at Ballykeeran”.

 The minutes if an Executive Meeting from 24th January 1995 details discussion on the purchase of Department of Defence lands at Cornamaddy.  According to the minutes of an Executive Meeting dated Thursday 20th July 1995 “The Committee was informed of an invitation, to attend a public meeting in the Mill, to discuss the conversion and development as a sport’s amenity, the Roadstone disused quarry, at Rooskey, Bealnamulla”

 To celebrate our Golden Anniversary I wish to explore how the Tennis Club happened to remain at Páirc Chiaráin, and the others were discarded. I will also detail how €70,396 from The National Lottery was used to refurbish the four existing courts with floodlit, all weather playing surface and how showers, toilets, kitchen and canopy were added to enhance Athlone Tennis Club’s facilities.

 COVID 19 Antidote

The following letter was written by Jesus Areso addressed to Julie Costello, Membership Secretary, when renewing his membership for 2020-2021. It is very moving and sincere and a marvellous antidote to COVID 19. Thank You Jesus.

“I had such a great time all the days that I have been attending the club. That I can’t wait to come back to play mixed and men’s games again.

Great people in the club that welcomed me with open arms. Thanks a lot for all the work you and your tennis family are doing to improve this club.

Please find attached the renewal form. I just did a bank transfer to the account with my name on it.”

Jesus Areso

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