Late last year, local Liberal Democrats ran a successful campaign to stop Haringey’s Labour council introducing charges to use public tennis courts.
Now we are concerned they are trying to privatise the courts through the back door. What’s more, they didn’t consult residents on your views.
The council is entering a contract with a private company, who will run sessions (for a fee) at peak times. This takes the courts out of public use at the times most people want to use them, and we are concerned it could be the tip of the iceberg - the council could easily hand over more and more time slots to the company.
The council is entering a contract with Georgians Tennis Club, allowing them to run private sessions every week for up to 28 hours at peak times and 20 hours at non-peak times. Courts in the following parks will be affected:
- Chestnuts Park
- Downhills Park (currently 4pm-6pm every Thursday and 11am-1pm on Saturdays)
- Down Lane Park (currently 4pm-8pm every Tuesday and Friday)
- Markfield Park
- Priory Park (currently 4pm-8pm every Tuesday and Friday)
- Stationers Park
Additional days and times may also be booked out for further private sessions, so the above list is not exhaustive.
The contract will raise £30,000, which is less than 0.01% of the council’s total budget. The council has said this money will be spent on “free and low-cost coaching opportunities” - a service which has historically been provided by the council anyway.