Many congratulations to Les Mellor who has not only won the East Region Award but has now been selected as a finalist for the LTA National Award. well done Les from everyone and very well deserved !
Les has made an exceptional contribution to his tennis club for 30+ year. Looking at Les’ life in tennis it is probably easier to say ‘what hasn’t Les done?’. He started playing tennis aged 12 at a local 2 court club. In 1996, he was appointed as a Nestle Panel Tutor for Teaching Tennis in Schools, running a number of courses each year – teaching teachers to teach tennis in Primary and Secondary schools. A crucial factor in the strategic development of tennis and junior involvement within the area. When he joined Brentwood Tennis Club in the early 2000’s – he immediately become actively involved in a complex and successful Sport England bid, enabling the club to build a new club house and 3 additional courts and practice wall in 2003 – growing junior membership to over 250. In 2018 he played a major role in introducing two tennis academies to the club. Les’ ability to introduce practical working solutions ensured the smooth integration of what could have been a very disruptive period for club members. A trailblazer in opening up tennis to enable more people to play and enjoy tennis Les’ influence is typified by the introduction of Padel – representing the committee on all aspects of Padel integration. Les’ ability and willingness to adapt has led him to fulfill a wide range of Committee roles and activities, throughout his 22 years at his club – including that of: Tennis Manager, Facilities Manager, Membership Secretary, Head Coach etc. As Tennis Manger he managed a number of Head Coaches – ensuring coaching programmes met the needs of those attending and those of the club and members – organised club championships and has personally introduced and managed Club Access Systems. As Facilities Manager he has shown exceptional commitment – remarkably retaining the responsibility for the club alarm systems, including being the named 24hr callout attendee into his 80’s. Les was dealing with safeguarding issues at the club before safeguarding in it’s present form even
existed. This involved safe working practices with the coaches including lone working, safe entry and pick up of all pupils. He also organised suitable training for the coaching team and ensuring CRB/DBS checks were in place at a very early stage in ‘safeguarding’ development. He has also represented the club and dealt with land and technical issues. He has also played a very active role in continually securing the finances of the club, using his analytical brain to determine the most efficient way of doing things. Les is a major factor in ensuring the club’s sustainability. Without Les’ contribution in all aspects of club life – the club would no longer exist. Les has also served on the Essex Tennis Council for a number of years His contribution to tennis throughout his life has been remarkable and formal recognition of this is very long overdue.
Les has done much more for his club and tennis than the above and this is just a part of his tennis story. We congratulate Les and thank him for all his hard work and dedication to tennis over the years.