Gloucester Table Tennis Club were thrilled to use their new Donic Tables for the first time at their Memorial Tournament on 1st June 2024. The fun day of ‘friendly’ intraclub had a healthy dose of banter. It marked the culmination of a huge amount of work and problem solving, something that the committee is rightly very proud of.

New Tables & a Shipping Container

Having raised the funds for new tables, the storage requirements had increased and it was apparent that the club would need a different solution. A situation echoed in Table Tennis Clubs of all sizes and facility types. With a great relationship with Quedgely Town Council the site operators, they investigated solutions and a shipping container on the side of the building was deemed the best solution.

Shipping containers an ‘easy’ storage solution

The club successfully applied for a grant for £4,000 from the Urbaser Fund – the Gloucestershire Energy from Waste Community Fund. They applied for planning permission. The club raised funds for the base and the path to give easy access to the Sports Hall fire exit. When I visited the club were waiting on a bespoke metal ramp which allowed the bottom door locks to work.

The container itself had been thoughtfully spec’d up with ample ventilation and a spray coating inside to preserve it and reduce condensation build up.

If you are considering a shipping container and looking for advice please let me know.

The Gloucester Memorial Tournament with a novel handicap system

Dave Adamson set up an interesting handicap system to ensure that everyone had a chance to enjoy and compete in the tournament, whether it was their 1st or they were a super vet.

Dave explained “24 members entered the memorial tournament (which went down really well). There was a vast age range ( 13-75) and mixed abilities. Two of the committee ranked the players 1-24, firstly on their league average then on their known ability. We finished with a list that nobody queried but we were open to change should anyone have felt wronged.

We decided to play up to 21 best of 5 in the group stages, 4 in a group, 1 from each group of 6 in descending rank. Winner and runner up went through to the knock out stage with the first 4 seeded players ( winners of groups 1-4) having a bye in the first round, the others played in round 1 ( 4 matches) same format with the winners going forward to play the seeded players. 

The only shock after the groups was the number 2 seed ended 3rd in a count back with 3 of them winning 2 each. 

Handicaps where decided that over 24 players with the number 1 ranked on 0 and the 24th on 16, then literally number 12 had 8 start, number 6 had 4 start, in other word dividing the handicap as equal as possible with two in each set of 6 having the same handicap. Outcome so many games went to 20-21 ( we made it first to 21 as the new score boards didn’t go any further 😂) meaning the rankings were pretty good and handicaps likewise. 

Refreshments were provided on each scoring table ( 6 groups of 4) Haribo for energy, you were given a raffle ticket relative to your ranking (1-24) for a free raffle. 

Outcome was the number 1 seed ( me ) won the event (nearly lost in the quarterfinals to a 14 year old ( handicap 14) l was 2-1 down and 20-20 in the fourth, managed to win the next point and then went on to win the 5th. 

Toughest match was semi final against number 3 seed (handicap 2) managed to win 3-1, played joint number 3 seed in the final won 3 straight, so my banter worked.

The Event took 10.30am – 3.30pm. Very enjoyable day.”

A visit to Gloucester TTC

I visited the club session on Friday 31st of May. There was a buzz of excitement as players discussed the Memorial Tournament. The session itself was impeccably organised and administered. There was a warm welcome for everyone on arrival. The whistle blew every 15 mins for a change of partner.

In one area, some adaptations had been for a member with dementia, who stayed where he was and players came to him. Care and consideration was given to create the best environment including additional barriers and a corner to reduce disruption by ingress of balls from other tables.

I was struck by the talent and commitment of the Gloucester Table Tennis Club committee and their love of Table Tennis shone through. Developing Table Tennis in Gloucester with friendliness and inclusivity at the heart of what they do.

Gloucester TTC foster and promotes the sport of table tennis at all levels, providing coaching and competitive opportunities. It is open to anyone who wants to play or learn to play the game.

The Club’s mission

I’ll report another time on their work on Junior Development.

Good news and topics of interest

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