COULD a future Wimbledon tennis champion emerge from Cardigan? Not if prospective fees to use the courts at Gwbert Road under a potential new scheme are anything to go by.

That is the pessimistic view of Cardigan town councillors who feel the Lawn Tennis Association’s fees for £4.50 per session or £39 for a family would deter any aspiring Cardi champion.

Cllr Philippa Noble confessed she was ‘uncomfortable’ at the thought of charging such amounts, while Cllr Nick Bolton was more direct.

“People around here are not going to pay those kind of fees,” he forecast.

The Lawn Tennis Association and UK Government are jointly investing £30 million into transforming local authority park tennis facilities across Britain.

And as part of the initiative they are checking out the current facilities in Cardigan.

“Park tennis venues are vital in providing accessible and affordable opportunities for communities to pick up a racket and get active, no matter their age, gender, background, ability or disability,” said a spokesperson.

“This is a once in a generation opportunity looking to attract one million more players into tennis.”

Under the scheme the LTA will use a national framework to recruit contractors, schedule works and finalise project details prior to paying agreed funds to the local authority.

Members heard that should the LTA scheme be adopted there would be much greater security at the Cardigan courts, something which Cllr Clive Davies said he would welcome.

“That would be good because then the vandalism would hopefully stop,” he said. “There were a lot of smashed wine bottles lying about when I was last down there.”