Tag Archives: Table Tennis

Active Life, including Table Tennis, at Armley Leisure Centre Leeds

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Active Life at Armley Leisure Centre, Leeds, leaflet.   Featuring Mick Burton, veteran table tennis player.

Active Life is an exercise programme especially designed for the over 50’s that can include more than one activity in each session.

There are a broad range of activities giving a variety every day of the week. Fitness class, gym session, go for a swim or the multi sport sessions which include Table Tennis, Mini Tennis and Badminton.

Joan has been going to the two hour table tennis sessions for about 5 years, starting as a beginner. The standard varies from beginners, people starting again through to improved players now in the local league.  I go along with Joan, when I can, to support table tennis coach, Sandra Rider who runs the Table Tennis and Mini tennis on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

There are 10 table tennis tables with an attendance of about 30 and two mini tennis courts attended by up to 15.

Some people switch between table tennis and mini tennis.

It is a very social group and Sandra also organises separate events such as annual ten pin bowling and the Xmas lunch.

Sandra has vast experience both as player and coach and still plays at League, County and Internationally as a veteran.  She also has medals at Veteran European and World Championships.

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Sandra Rider, on the right, with her Bronze Medal in the over 60’s Ladies Doubles event at the World Veterans Table Tennis Championships, 2018, held in Las Vagas.  Her doubles partner Shirley Gelder is on the left.

I have played in leagues since I was 16, including mostly full seasons in Leeds Division 1 for 50 years for Victoria Table Tennis Club, until 4 years ago when I moved to Leeds Judean Table Tennis Club.

Joan and myself decided to join Sandra at the Veterans World Championships in Alicante in 2016.  I lost all my group games three straight, although the other player who went into the Over 70’s Consolation with me won it.

Joan led a lady from Brazil in the Over 70’s Singles by 2 games to 1 before losing in the 5th.

Joan Frank playing in the over 70’s doubles with her Japanese partner at the 2016 World Veterans Table Tennis Championships in Alicante, Spain.  Photo Mick Burton, continuous line artist.

People just seem to keep on playing table tennis. 

Last week, I was short of two players for my team’s first Summer League match in Leeds Division 1 against Lawnswood YMCA A team.  I thought I may have to re-arrange the match but was given two lower division players.  Step forward Malcolm Shedlow, age 86, and Dennis Fisher, age 80, who both started playing for Leeds Judean Table Tennis Club in the 1950’s and spent many years in Division 1.  I am only 75 so brought the average age of my team down to 80.

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Leeds Judean table tennis C team in the Leeds Summer League against Lawnswood YMCA A team at the YMCA on 4 June 2019. Dennis Fisher, aged 80, Mick Burton, age 75 and Malcolm Shedlow, age 86.   Photo by Mark Bleakley of Lawnswood YMCA. 

Our opponents were Mark Bleakley, Ankush Vidyarth and Kiran Babra with average age early 40’s.  The result reflected our respective ages!

Tour of Britain, Continuous Line, new version by Mick Burton. Inspired by Tour de Yorkshire 2019.

Tour of Britain, new continuous line drawing by Mick Burton. Inspired by Tour de Yorkshire 2019.

The Tour de Yorkshire annual cycle race has become a fixture in the Yorkshire calendar, but can be disruptive to other events or day trips we may plan.

Harrogate and Nidderdale Art Club’s exhibition, intended to take place on Early May Bank holiday, was moved this year to Spring Bank Holiday weekend 25-27 May 2019 due to the Tour de Yorkshire coming through Ripley, where we hold the exhibition, on Friday 3 May.

Harrogate and Nidderdale Art Club Spring Art Show and Sale of Work, Ripley Town Hall, 25-27 May 2019.

My Tour of Britain drawing has a continuous line starting and ending in Yorkshire as well, but would take slightly longer than the 4 days of the Tour de Yorkshire and require some trips over water.

The Tour de Yorkshire passed Ripley Town Hall, where the Exhibition will be held this weekend, and the Television coverage did a feature on Ripley including aerial views of Ripley Castle and the family of Sir Thomas Ingilby our art club’s patron.

Ripley Town Hall.   Photo from Harrogate and Nidderdale Art Club website   www.handnart.co.uk

That day’s stage, from Doncaster to Bedale, passed some other places which have a close connection to myself.  As well as passing Scholes Village Hall, near Leeds (where Joan and myself play table tennis on a Sunday morning), Harrogate (where I went to school and served as a Police Cadet) and Ripley (as above), into Ripon passing two road ends where I grew up in the 1950’s and it ended in Bedale where my mother’s family (Mace) were based from the early 1800’s.

Last year’s Tour de Yorkshire went through Bedale and the reception was so impressive that the organisers decided to finish a stage in the town this year.  Here is a photo from the 2018 race where the riders went over the railway level crossing from Bedale into Aiskew and on the left is Park House, the Mace family house from the 1920’s.

Tour de Yorkshire 2018 at level crossing from Bedale into Aiskew passing the Mace family Park House on the left.  Photo Northern Echo 2018.

Joan and myself had intended to visit my Aunty Vi Doyle, 98 years old and who’s first husband was my mother Brenda’s youngest brother Harry Mace, on Friday 3 May.  When I realised that the Tour was finishing in Bedale that day I knew that we would not be able to get any where near her house and so we went a few days earlier.  Vi’s health had been deteriorating for some months and she was distinctly weaker this time and did not eat much of her fish from Fishy Hall’s for the first time ever.

We found out about the exact route of the race which included going past Vi’s bungalow in South End at the start of the finishing straight and we told her she would here the cheering.

Joan and myself watched the end of that stage on the television and after passing Vi’s the riders went up the main street passing the top of Emgate, in sight of the Oddfellows Arms (now The Three Coopers) where my mother was born, and finished next to the house in North End where my parents had their first home.

The cheers of the crowd would be one of the last memories of Aunty Vi who sadly died peacefully this morning in her own home.