Welcome to the Second edition of the London Area blog.

It’s certainly been a busy time since Christmas, with The Jack Petchey Schools competitions at the forefront.

The Jack Petchey London Schools Team finals were held at Redbridge on January 24th. It is the fifth year I’ve been part of this competition in some capacity and the first time leading it. I’m always blown away by the standard of the young athletes at the finals. Having over 30 tables set up during the day, in one hall, gave the venue a good atmosphere for some fierce table tennis. It was definitely London Academy’s day who thoroughly deserved their 5 wins in the respective categories. Well done to all the players and coaches involved! For a full report, please visit the link below:

Congratulations too, to everyone who participated at the qualifiers and finals. Best of luck to the teams going through to the Area Semi Finals in Bristol!! Many thanks to the Schools County Secretaries for their valuable time and expertise during the qualifiers. A special thanks to the Jack Petchey Foundation for the continued support of table tennis in London and Essex.

As the team finals concluded, it was then the turn of the Jack Petchey Individual Qualifiers (which is also part of the national schools pathway.) This didn’t disappoint. It will be interesting to know the final numbers of the qualifiers, but it is likely to be over 600 participants in the 5 London ‘counties’ and Essex, with more than 200 participants in South London alone. It was great to see so many young people having the opportunity to test their skills and gain valuable competitive experience. Many thanks again to the county secretaries, teachers, coaches and participants for making these event so enjoyable! Best of luck to the participants at the Individual finals in April and Jack Petchey Finals in May.

We have a full range of pictures of the team and individual events on our Flickr page. To view please visit the link below:


Having been my first taste of the schools competitions at a hands-on level, it gave me food for thought on how London can develop more opportunities for schools to increase their exposure to competition in the boroughs, whether this is through matches with other schools, local schools’ leagues or tournaments. Facilitating more competition is one of the key aspects of my work going forward.