A TENNIS club which moved out of a housing estate to take over its town’s civic courts has been crowned county club of the year 2016.

Wantage Tennis Club picked up the award ‘for services to British tennis’ at Oxfordshire Lawn Tennis Association’s (OLTA) annual awards this month in Oxford.

The club is now in the running for a national award which could see it collect a £5,000 facility grant.

At the ceremony OLTA said: “Wantage Tennis Club are deserved winners of this award for not only creating a fantastic new facility but also for increasing participation and for raising the profile of the sport in the community, and what’s more this has all been achieved by officers of the club who are volunteers and did this in their spare time.”

The award was presented to club chairman Mark Rowe and vice-chairman Steve Thompson.

Mr Rowe commended all his colleagues for their hard work and said: “The journey has been tough, even scary at times, but we did it.

“We have fantastic new courts, in a fantastic setting in Manor Park for both members and ‘pay as you play’ for the public. It’s just brilliant to be officially recognised for our efforts.”

The club was based at Foliat Drive for decades but, surrounded by housing, was unable to put up floodlights.

Last year it sold the old courts to a housing developer and took control of Vale of White Horse District Council’s courts at Manor Road Recreation Ground.

The club has built six new courts and a new clubhouse.