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Benefactor Membership Scheme
A letter from David Watson, Tennis & Rackets Association Chairman
The T&RA Benefactor Scheme was established by our then Chairman, William Maltby in 2013. Since that time more than 60 T&RA members have volunteered to make additional contributions in excess of the normal Annual Subscription as part of the Benefactor Scheme. We are always looking for new participants who, like so many of us, are passionate about the games of Tennis and Rackets and wish to ensure their existence and development for future generations.
Need for money
The T&RA finances are in a reasonable state and have been managed to cover routine expenditure out of regular annual revenue sources. As we approach the end of Neptune’s most generous sponsorship of Tennis, the Association faces a real risk that it will not have the resources to meet the large but frequent requests it receives to provide more structural support to our games.
These typically fall into two areas:
- Development of new and restoration and repair of existing Courts
- Recruitment and training Professionals
The generosity of historic donors and Benefactors has allowed the Association to make significant contributions to both new build (Wellington/Tonbridge) and repair/improvement projects that have greatly enhanced the playing opportunities and experience for our members in many different parts of the country. We have been able to support new LED lighting projects across much of the UK estate and are presently considering urgent requests from Moreton Morrell and Jesmond Dene for significant structural repairs. These challenges and opportunities will keep coming!
Equally importantly, it is critical that we enjoy the support and capabilities of a skilled and inspirational set of professionals able to draw new players into our games and inspire both young and old to greater heights of play. Both games are suffering from an ageing professional profile and a serious shortage of young professionals which, if not addressed urgently, will leave many Clubs and Schools without a suitably equipped professional team able to teach to a high level and to support the courts’ economic operation. With your support, we are financing major programmes in both games to subsidise the training of young professionals so that the next generation can be as fortunate as many of us have been to be taught and inspired by great coaches and players.
The benefits of becoming a Benefactor include all the regular benefits of being a member of the T&RA together with upfront recognition in the Annual Report and on the website; a Chairman’s update report summarising the pipeline of major projects and the T&RA’s support for them; and an annual Benefactors’ Cocktail Party, the next to be held at Queen’s on 4 April 2017 around the Brown Advisory British Open Rackets Doubles. In addition, you will receive the Benefactor’s tie, or brooch for the ladies, on joining. Becoming a Benefactor is a wonderful way to contribute to the future prosperity of our games that have given us so much pleasure over the years. I very much hope that you will join me in supporting this initiative.
Now that the T&RA Limited itself has become a charity, we have two bodies within the T&RA Family with charitable status. You can decide to whom you wish to make your payment (T&RA Ltd or the Dick Bridgeman TRA Foundation). If you are a higher rate taxpayer, you will be able to claim gift aid on your payments other than in your first year as a Benefactor where, due to the gift of a tie or brooch on joining the scheme, your benefits exceed the HMRC allowance.
If you are willing to become a Benefactor and contribute a minimum of £300 per annum (including your annual subscription), please complete the attached forms, as appropriate, and return them to Andrina Webb, Membership Secretary, at the T&RA’s office at Queen’s.
I do hope you will agree to become a Benefactor and join the select group who are pleased to give something back to the game that has given us all so much pleasure.
Benefactor Membership form