Historic tennis legacy goes up in flames - TennisForum.com
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2007, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Paneru's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 22,129
Historic tennis legacy goes up in flames

Historic tennis legacy goes up in flames


05 April 2007
Katie Davies

A HAMPSTEAD Garden Suburb tennis centre founded by a woman who overcame anti-Semitism to become a Wimbledon champion has been burnt down.

The Northway Tennis Centre was set up by tennis star Angela Buxton who lived in Market Place when she won the woman's doubles title 51 years ago.

And last week the club's courts and buildings were badly damaged in what may have been an arson attack.

Lisa Gershon, who has been a coach at the club for 10 years, said: "The main club building has gone as well as the changing rooms. All the records we had of all our past members have gone, all our photographs and memorabilia. It is not just a loss for club members but to the history of the area.

"The centre is a part of the Suburb and for this to happen in the centenary year is just awful. A little boy went past with his mother and he asked what we were going to do. I said rebuild it and he said 'I have got £6 if that would help'.

"It is part of the local environment and it is shocking - people are really upset. The only reason it exists is because everyone loves the club but there have been several things over the years. We have had break-ins and people trying it on."

On June 17 Ms Buxton, who is currently in Florida, was due to return to the Suburb to present a trophy at the Centenary Tennis Tournament at the club, half a century after her finest sporting hour.

She paired with American Althea Gibson for the 1956 Wimbledon tournament. Ms Gibson, who was black, faced racist discrimination at tennis clubs and Ms Buxton was refused entry to the fashionable Cumberland Tennis Club because she was Jewish.

Despite their very different backgrounds with Gibson from Harlem and Buxton from a well-to-do Jewish family in London the two joined forces to win the title in inspiring fashion.

They maintained their inspiring friendship until Ms Gibson's death in 2003 at the age of 76.

Fire chiefs are investigating the cause of the blaze and have not ruled out arson.

Steve Poxton, who runs the centre with Charles Swynnerton, said: "The fire brigade called me on Thursday morning after finding my number on one of the notice boards that didn't burn down.

Charles is out of the country so he doesn't even know what has happened yet. I came to the Suburb to work there when it was run by Angela Buxton in 1984 and named after her. In 1989 we took it over and have run it since.

"The authorities can't say for sure what caused it - I don't think we will ever know whether it was arson or not.

"But we have insurance and there is a lot of hope we can do something about it because it is a lovely tennis club. Everyone is rallying around and any help would be gratefully appreciated"


Paneru is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2007, 04:13 PM
Serena's #1 Hater
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 19,725
Re: Historic tennis legacy goes up in flames

The more things change.....

"He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord." -- Proverbs 18:22

"Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard." -- Herb Brooks

"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life." -- Muhammad Ali
darrinbaker00 is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the TennisForum.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome