Moving to Loughborough
Blow for Tennis Scotland as Stirling academy to close
Five years after opening in Stirling with the aim of continuing the legacy of Andy and Jamie Murray, the GB Tennis Academy is to pack its nets up and move to Loughborough.
The current deal with the Lawn Tennis Association has two years left to run but in a major blow to Tennis Scotland, 2024 will see all operations transfer to the sport’s other UK academy in Leicestershire.
Tennis Scotland has been delivering the GB National Tennis Academy at the University of Stirling in partnership with the sportscotland Institute of Sport and Dollar Academy.
The facility has six indoor courts, two outdoor clay courts and two synthetic courts and was launched in 2019 with the aim of providing a pathway to success for Scotland’s most promising tennis stars.
However, Edinburgh youngster Matt Rankin, who is in his final year as a junior, is the only Scot to have been involved in the programme.
Towards the end of 2016, the Lawn Tennis Association and sportscotland proclaimed that the number of covered courts in Scotland would be doubled by 2026 thanks to a £15m joint-funding agreement. During that timeframe it was hoped the number of covered tennis courts north of the Border would rise from 112 to 225.
There is little sign of that target being achieved and the closure of the academy in Stirling is bad news for a sport hoping to increase participation and capitalise on the success of the Murray brothers who have 10 Grand Slam victories between them.