Fives Players Return To The Court

10/09/20: It may be not be the normal start to a season, but after almost six months with no play, club Fives resumed this week as a small number of venues opened their courts.

Most sets of courts are still off limits for the time being and the normal EFA league and tournament programme is therefore currently on hold. However, with the recent news that the EFA return to play guidelines have been successfully reviewed by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport play has resumed this week with the Newbury club taking to the courts at St.Bart's, the Heath moving a few miles down the road from Aldenham to Mill Hill and the new Emanuel Wednesday night club back up and running. The single outdoor court at High Elms in Kent has also seen more play in recent weeks than in most of the previous 150 years of its existence.

Phil Lyndon from Aldenham reports: "Fives is back at Aldenham...well, Mill Hill actually. Ten AFC members met on court for the first time since March on a humid Tuesday evening. Our seven-month lay off due to Covid-19 did not hamper the energy or the banter flying around the courts. A phone-scannable QR code is being used by Mill Hill to facilitate track and trace and hand sanitizer is available. We followed the EFA guidelines. New restrictions allowing, we’ll be back at Mill Hill every week until the Aldenham courts re-open after October half term."

Mike Till reports from Emanuel: "It was great to be back on court last night, and our trial run appears to have been successful and hopefully we will continue to play on Wednesday evenings from now on. You would be most welcome to come along if you are interested. Naturally, there are various measure in place to comply with COVID-19 protocols. Do please get in touch if you would like to play. Players commented on feeling a little rusty and the return of cut was perhaps not as sharp as it once was, nonetheless, everyone was soon back in the groove and delighted to be playing once again. The standard quickly improved and it was not long before whoops of delight outweighed the cries of despair; though of course, all expressed in a suitably responsible sotte voce to avoid the risk of spreading the virus. My thanks to Emanuel School for allowing us access to the courts once more."

A handful of league and Barber Cup club matches are also planned over the next few weeks and as the court situation at Westway and Eton becomes clearer, we will hopefully be in a position to look at how best to complete last season's Kinnaird Cup and Ladies championships and make some more informed decisions on what will be possible over the next few months.

In the meantime, it is great to see people enjoying being back on court and we hope that more people get the opportunity to start playing again sooner rather than later.

Information on where you can currently play is below. Please remember to read the guidelines carefully before you play and to make every effort to ensure that they are followed safely.

Emanuel: The weekly Wednesday night Emanuel club starts up again this week. Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.for details.

Mill Hill: The Mill Hill courts are available to hire, either as individual courts or as a block of three. Click here for details.

St.Bart's, Newbury: The Newbury club are currently running evening sessions from 7-9 on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more info.

High Elms: The outdoor court in High Elms Country Park in Orpington is available and currently in good nick (weather permitting). Check with This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for availability.

Westway: The Westway courts are still currently unavailable but we hope to have some positive news on that front over the course of the next few weeks.

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