News Release - BSMTTC News 95
Dateline: 10 August 2019
New Home Arrives!
Bath Street Marine Table Tennis Club is proud to announce the arrival and opening of its new home at the Marine Travel Arena in College Road, Crosby; a project that has taken almost 3 years to bring to fruition!
Way back in 2013 Bath Street Marine Table Tennis Club, one of the oldest table tennis clubs in the Liverpool area, learned of plans of its landlord, Marine Football Club, to demolish the building which the table tennis club had occupied for a number of years as part of a proposed redevelopment of the football club facilities.
Working in partnership with Sefton Borough Council the table tennis club started a search for new premises. Initially looking at former public library sites as well as a number of other possible venues. However nothing materialised. For a short while it seemed that the football club's development plans may have come to an end, but then in 2016 news was received that the redevelopment of the Marine site was going ahead, and that the new plan could not include provision for a new home for the table tennis club.
However, working with Marine FC a new plan was developed. This would effectively allow the table tennis club to stay on the Marine site, but the table tennis club would have to build its own separate building. An area of land on the Marine site was identified as being suitable for a new building and so the work began to assess the feasibility and affordability of the table tennis club developing and owning a home of its own!
Working with local chartered architect Bill O'Hara, who provided his professional services to the table tennis club free of charge, various options for a new building were considered and eventually a modular construction based on 'containers' was selected on the basis that for the space needed it provided the best value for money. Estimated costings were obtained, and with the help of the Sports Development Department of Sefton Borough Council (SBC) a funding bid was made to Sport England as well as an application for funding support to the SBC Community Transition Fund. Designs were drawn up, and all relevant planning applications made.
In November 2018 an Award Offer for a sum of £57,000 was received from Sport England together with an offer from Sefton Borough Council for a contribution of £10,000 from the Community Transition Fund. It seemed that with these offers on the table a new build might just be possible.
Local contractor Eagle Containers Ltd, of Derby Road, Liverpool, were chosen as the preferred contractor for the development and detailed negotiations were undertaken for a formal lease of the proposed site of the new building. In the meantime the club vigorously undertook fund raising activities to fill the gap between the anticipated cost of the project and the grants offered by Sport England and SBC. Gradually the strands started to come together.
The club's old home, The Peter Ross Table Tennis Room, was demolished on the 29 April. At that stage a new home still looked quite a long way off. But step by step, and like a phoenix out of the ashes, with some tremendous team working the new building finally arrived. We are now planning the official Grand Opening, which will be on Friday 30 August at 7:30pm.
It has been an amazing journey, with a few slips along the way. The main contractor has been fantastic and really delivered on every aspect of the task. And now we have a new home of which we are extremely proud. We truly believe this will be a facility for the whole of the local community, where healthy exercise can be offered in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. And because the facility is our own, we aim to make it accessible to all who would wish to join us or give table tennis a try. It is a great game and one which we really believe can be enjoyed from 8 - 80! Indeed our youngest member is 8, and our oldest, way over 80! Our home is 'accessible' and we have a real mix of male and female members. The one thing that all have in common, is that we really enjoy playing social, recreational or competitive table tennis! Maybe we will see you there, come and give us a look!
The short film below tells the story of the fall and rise of an amazing table tennis club!