PremierClub is the ETTA national programme for club development. It aims to help clubs grow and strengthen, and is directly aligned to Sport Englands CLUBMARK scheme a cross sport accreditation scheme signifying the sign of a quality club.
Club of the Year Awards aim to recognise and reward good practice in club development across a broad range of areas such as growth of membership, volunteers and club playing programme.
Four levels and four awards partnership working
The four levels of awards acknowledged were as follows: ClubMark Level, Participation Level, Advanced Level and Excellence Level. Winners received a crystal trophy for the club to keep, along with a certificate, and the runners-up received a certificate.
The winners and runners up are as follows:
Club Mark Level
Winner: BATTS Harlow, Essex
Runner-up: Crawley Community TTC
Supported by ETTA, BATTS (Burnt Mill Academy of Table Tennis Skills) has developed from a small church hall to a lottery funded school site, and now has a long lease conversion of a redundant recreation centre in Harlow, Essex.
As is often the case, club development needs a small band of dedicated volunteers and in this instance Eric Todd, Neil Brierley, Sharon Head and Dave Wright have all played key roles.
Over the years key ingredients have come together, coaching at all levels, school links and different age teams in local, county, national and British leagues has created a recipe for success and achievement.
The icing on the cake will come in the new year following the completion of the refurbishment of the Norman Booth Recreation Centre.
The ETTA looks forward to continuing to support the club and seeing it going from strength to strength.
Winner: Woolwell TTC, Plymouth, Devon
Runner-up: St Neots TTC
Woolwell TTC is currently the largest club in the South West of England, with players regularly attending from all over Devon and Cornwall. The club currently has around a dozen ETTA qualified (and CRB checked) coaches, including former international players and current England coaches.
The club has 16 teams playing in the Plymouth & District League, as well as many others in national competitions, and its teams have won the Womens and Veterans British Leagues, and, representing the Plymouth League, the National Junior Inter-League team title.
Other notable aspects are:
Sunday evening club cafï¿½ staffed by club volunteers, with proceeds going to club funds.
Club championships held every spring with an awards evening part of a 24 hour marathon of fun event, as well as other all day and social events.
Website, regular e-mails and printed newsletters.
Recently celebrated its 10th birthday with a club championships and fund-raising event.
John Smith and his committed band of volunteers work tirelessly to create a friendly, social atmosphere at the club which continues to produce fantastic results.
In conjunction with the ETTA and other partners, the club is currently nearing the recruitment of a Community Table Tennis Coach, and a long awaited new facility project is in the pipeline.
Winner: Fastbats TTC, Bradford
Runner-up: Blackpool TTC
Bradford Fastbats TTC was formed from the nucleus of Clayton Heights TTC originally founded back in 1927. In 2001 the club elected to find a suitable venue to enable the club to join the ETTA PremierClub programme. The club took its first steps to outreach coaching at Allerton Primary School, and from these humble beginnings the club has continued to grow, relocating to Bradford Girls Grammar School. It operates every day of the week with either coaching, open play, schools outreach or competitions. The current venue offers a minimum of 16 tables in coaching sessions, and the club membership exceeds 150 from all ages and genders.
The key to the club success is strong leadership, planning and partnership working. New Chairman David Adams has been a major driving force to the club committee, proactively seeking funding for coaching and equipment, and the implementation of the club action plan. Clubmark accreditation has helped with the clubs vision and future planning.
Last season the club ran over 10 teams in the Bradford League, including running summer tournaments, NCL, NJL and British League teams.
Partnership working has developed with the ETTA and local authority culminating in the appointment of a part-time PESSYP coaching position.
Strong school to club links have matured through relationship building by head coach Sally Shutt with school sport partnerships in Bradford. Regular meetings with partnership development managers have become a key element to the clubs outreach schools coaching and a link for prospective new club venues, new junior members and especially new club volunteers.
Winner: Ormesby TTC, Cleveland
Runner-up: London Progress TTC
Third place: Halton TTC
A leading English club for over 40 years, Ormesby is fast re-approaching the heyday of the seventies and early eighties when a large team of voluntary coaches, facility availability (albeit a converted chicken hut) and insatiable drive from Alan Ransome produced international players of the calibre of Denis Neale, Nicky Jarvis, Carole Knight and others. Ormesby TTC won the European Club Championship in 1972 the only ever British success.
Following an enormous amount of hard work to get their specialist club centre up and running, extensive school and community links (including a disability programme) and a large scale coaching and competition programme has developed, resulting in a growth of membership and emerging talented players – particularly from the girls squad.
This is on top of established England players Paul Drinkhall, Danny Reed and Karina Le Fevre.
The club was a founder member of the British League and continues to support all sections with eight teams in the different categories.
Always at the front of the queue to take advantage of partnership and funding opportunities, the club has recently appointed a full-time coach/manager whose role not only includes coaching at all levels, but also to develop a volunteer infrastructure capable of taking the club further to reach greater heights.