Club Rules

Membership Packages

1. Limitations on Use of Courts

The ground staff have the right to close any courts that they consider unfit for play. In these circumstances the courts must not be used without the permission of the ground staff. Members are asked to respect the notices on each court. Members are asked not to clear snow from courts as this may damage them. Should weather conditions deteriorate and a Committee Member considers the courts have become unfit for play then members must respect that decision.

On Club Finals day the tournament referee will have the absolute discretion over the use of any court.

2. Dress on Court

(a) All players representing the Club in matches must wear recognised tennis clothing (i) to meet current Kent LTA rules and (ii) acceptable to the team captain.

(b) At all other times when playing at the Club members must wear clothing appropriate for tennis which can be of any colour. Other clothing, such as jeans is not acceptable. Playing on any court bare chested is never permitted.

(c) Footwear must be “appropriate for tennis” and of a type designed not to damage the surface of the court being played on. Soles must be non-marking, must not be black, and must not be ridged or studded.

3. Shoe Tags

If the Tennis Committee decides to have a Shoe Tag policy for that season, tennis members will be issued with a tag on payment of their subscription. The tag must be worn at all times when playing at the club. Membership checks may be conducted at any time by the Club Stewards.

4. Visitors

Members must sign in their visitors (i.e. any non-tennis member) and pay the appropriate visitors fee shown in the book before playing. The visitors book is kept by the public telephone and the visitors fee should be placed in an envelope and deposited in the Secretary’s Office. No visitor may play at the Club more than four times in one calendar year without the Committee’s permission.

5. Outside Tournaments

Members may play outside tournament matches but must sign-in their opponents as visitors before play commences. The visitor’s fee is waived in this circumstance.

6. Court Behaviour

When tennis is being played, players wishing to access an adjoining court are not allowed to enter the court to pass behind the players until the point has been played. They may then request to join an adjoining court.

When a match is in play members and their guests are not permitted to pass behind the court until the point has been completed.

7. Grass Court Season

The grass court season will be from early May to Late September. The availability and opening times of the grass courts is at the discretion of the ground staff. Please refer to Tennis Section notice board for updates and variations.

8. Special Notes

(a) Courts 11 and 12 may be used for Kent League club matches

(b) Courts 13-16 may be booked on Saturday and Sunday mornings by full tennis members for the session 11:00 – 12:30.

9. Scholarships

A number of scholarships may be awarded by the Tennis Committee to juniors, students or others and will have all senior playing rights. Some of these scholarships may be at a reduced senior subscription rate approved by the Tennis Committee.

10. Court Priority

(a) Coaching

1. The Club Coach has priority on Court 7 at all times.

2. Coaches authorised by the Committee have priority on Court 7 when not being used by the Club Coach.

3. During the Grass Court season Group Coaching authorised by the Committee has priority on Courts 8-10 as follows:

  • Saturdays 09:00 – 11:00 and 16:00 – 18:00
  • Sundays 09:00 – 11:00
  • Mondays 18:00 – 21:00

4. Coaches authorised by the Committee may coach on Courts 1-10 without priority (i.e. the coach must vacate if all available courts are in use and members are waiting).

(b) Junior Club Play Sessions

Juniors have priority on courts 1-10 on Fridays from 16:30 – 19:30.

(c) Club Play Sessions

1. Club Afternoons and Club Evenings have priority on all courts as follows:

  • Wednesday 19:00 – Close
  • Saturday 14:00 – 18:00

2. Members participating in Club Evenings and Club Afternoons shall join in organised doubles and play one short set* with a tie break at 4 games all. *Since October 2014.

(d) Club Tournaments

1. Club Championship matches have absolute priority on all courts (save court 7) during the fourteen days prior to Club Open Finals’ Day.

2. Handicap Tournament matches shall have priority on all courts (save court 7) except Junior evenings and during Club Play sessions.

(e) Other Club Tournaments

Organised single session tournaments – e.g. American Tournaments have priority on all courts (save court 7) for their duration.

(f) Booked Courts

Members who have booked a court under the court booking system (see Court Bookings) have priority on that court for the duration of the booked session subject to Court Booking Rule 5.

(g) Acrylic and Grass Court Priorities

If all available acrylic or grass courts are occupied and Senior members are waiting on those courts the following priorities apply:

(i) Juniors playing with Juniors to vacate.

(h) Hard Court Priorities

When grass courts are in play, if all available courts are occupied and Senior members are waiting the following priorities apply in order:

(i) Juniors playing with Juniors to vacate.

(ii) Coaching to vacate – except court 7 and Group Coaching authorised by the Committee.

(i) Organised Inter-Club Matches:

Senior inter-club matches have absolute priority on courts 1-4 and 11 and 12. If those courts are not available these matches have priority on courts 8 – 10 (if a three pair match) or on courts 5 and 6 (if a two pair match).

(j) Junior Matches

Junior matches have priority on courts 5 and 6.

Notes with regard to Court Priorities:

“priority” means members must vacate a court when requested so to do by those having priority on that court. “vacate” means members may finish the game (not set) in progress and must then leave the court.

In Rules 10(i) and 10(j), “Junior” does not include Scholarship Junior; Scholarship Juniors enjoy all Senior playing rights and priorities.

11. Court Bookings

(a) All Bookings

1. Bookings are made on the Booking Sheets (until 25 October 2015) kept in a ring binder kept beside the public telephone in the Clubhouse. From 26 October 2015, the online Court Booking System is to be used.

Book Your Court

2. Booking Sheets are made available each Saturday morning, one week before the start of the period concerned.

3. Each booking must state the names of all players.

4. A member may not book to play in more than one booked session on the same day.

5. If a booked court is not occupied within 10 minutes of the scheduled starting time, it may be taken over by other members.

(b) Winter Mornings: from mid-September to end April

1. Courts 1-6 and 8-10 are available for booking on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Two sessions are available each day: 10:00 to 11:30 and 11:30 to 13:00.

2. Bookings may be made up to one week in advance; no booking fee is required.

3. Inter-club matches have priority on courts 1-6 and 8-10, as required.

(c) Summer Mornings: from early May to mid-September

1. Grass Courts 13-16 may be booked by full tennis members for the single session 11:00 – 12:30 on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

2. Acrylic Courts may be booked on Saturday and Sunday mornings by full tennis members. Two sessions are available each day: 10:00 – 11:30 and 11:30 – 13:00.

3. Inter Club matches have priority on courts 1-10 as required. Junior inter club matches have priority on courts 5 and 6.

(d) Floodlit Courts: 16 August to 15 May only

1. Courts 1-7 may be booked for floodlit play on any evening except Sundays and Bank Holidays.

2. Three bookable sessions are available each evening: 17:30 – 19:00, 19:00 – 20:30 and 20:30 – 22:00. The floodlights may also be used from 15:30 – 17:30 but may not be booked for this period.

3. The floodlights are activated by a token which must be purchased from the Club Bar at a cost of £6.00.

4. Members are requested not to book more than one peak time session per week (19:00 – 22:00 Monday to Thursday) unless a session is vacant three days after bookings commence.

Note with regard to Court Bookings:

Whilst every effort is made to book courts for all Club Matches. In the event of this failing to happen, the Club Match will still have priority over a privately booked court except court 7.