Mission: To be the inviting, family friendly sporting and social club that cares.
Excerpt from 50th Anniversary Booklet produced by Ray Reay
On 3rd August 1948, Wollongong City Council's Chief Engineer reported to Council that McCabe Park was too narrow for the proper provision of sports grounds. In his opinion, playing areas should be located closer to where people lived rather than to where they worked. his recommendation was that the playing facilities should be removed and the park converted into a park and garden.
Nothing eventuated from this report until the Council meeting of 28th September 1955, when, as a matter of urgency, a resolution was passed "that no buildings be permitted on McCabe Park other than those already erected and the Wollongong Baby Health Centre; and that the Tennis Association and Cycle Club be allowed a period of five (5) years to vacate those sections of the Park occupied by them".
Council wrote on 10th October 1955 to advise the Association of this decision and stated in their letter:- "Your Association's lease of the area occupied by tennis courts and tennis buildings expires on the 1st September 1957. Council would like possession of the ground on expiry of the lease, but if the Association is not able to make alternative arrangements in this time, Council would permit it to remain in occupation on licence for a further period of three years to 1st September 1960".
The Association then asked Council to receive a deputation so they could discuss the use of Beaton Park. This meeting occurred on 25th January 1956 when the Association was represented by Jack Bell (Treasurer), Harold Stapleton, Lionel Burrell, Harry Chapman, Bob Clayton and Ken Plumb. After discussion, Council's Committee agreed to recommend "That the area in the section of Beaton Park shown on the Master Plan as reserved for Tennis Courts be enlarged to enable the erection of 16 courts and a Clubhouse, and that the enlarged area be allotted to the Wollongong District Tennis Assoc. The annual charge for the right to occupy the area to be fixed at a later date".
On Council's record of this meeting there is a typed file note which reads "(His Worship the Mayor asked that his name be recorded as voting against the recommendation)". Despite this note, the recommendation was adopted by Council on 1st February 1956.
On 17th September 1958, the Town Clerk wrote to Council's solicitors and asked them to draft a Beaton Park lease agreement for submission to the Minister for Local Government. The Town Clerk stated "that no objection is raised to entering an Agreement wight the Trustees of the Greater Wollongong Tennis Club as opposed to the Association. Council has also indicated that it will acquiesce in the granting of a Liquor Licence to the Club".
The draft 21 years lease was returned to Council on 6th February 1959 and subsequently signed on 17th February 1959 by both the Mayor and Town Clerk, and by the five Trustees of the Tennis Club. Council immediately forwarded the signed lease to the Local Government Department, with a note saying "It was considered the Club's application for a Liquor licence would more likely be successful if the Club held a Lease given with the approval of the Minister. As the Club's application is returnable at the Wollongong Licensing Court on 23rd February 1959, it would be appreciated if the documents could be endorsed and returned as early as possible".
While the approved lease was not returned to Council until 23rd June 1959, the Club's liquor licence application proceeded. It came up for mention on 23rd February and was listed for hearing on 14th April 1959. Finally, the Club's Solicitor Noel Lamerton (of Lamerton Brown & Co) advised the Town Clerk on 14th July 1959 that "the Club was granted a conditional Club Licence under the Liquor Act at Sydney on 10th July 1959. The Magistrate accepted the photostat copy of the Lease and we desire to thank you for your courtesy and co-operation".
When the Club stated operations as a Licensed Premise it opened only of Friday, Saturday and Sunday of each week. The Club traded from 3.00pm to 8.00pm each day. Mrs Rose Young managed the bar during the daytime, while volunteers did the evening hours. These included Jack Hogben, Jack Townsen and Harold Stapleton from City Club, who were assisted by members of the Inner City Tennis Clubs of Figtree, Wisemans Park, Gilmore Park and Wollongong Workers. All of these volunteers freely gave their time to help the new Club get on its feet.
The City of Wollongong Tennis Club practices the Responsible Service of Alcohol. Please Enjoy Responsibly.
For information about problem gambling and help options, call Gambling Help 24/7 on 1800 858 858 or visit www.gamblinghelp.nsw.gov.au