Family-owned Colten Care has teamed up with The West Hants Club in a move that will also support talented youngsters seeking to play sport at higher levels.
Under the two-year agreement, residents of seven care homes in Bournemouth, Poole and East Dorset can go to the club to watch games, either brought along by their families or on minibus trips.
Up to six residents at a time can also use the club swimming pool for an hour on weekday afternoons.
To promote wider understanding of fitness and wellbeing in later life, Colten Care’s clinical experts will host presentations for club members on aspects of elderly care and health.
The partnership was launched with a visit by residents from Avon Cliff care home in Bournemouth.
It coincided with the 50th anniversary of West Hants staging the first ‘open era’ tennis tournament, widely seen as paving the way towards the global, professional sport tennis is now.
Just yards from where Virginia Wade and Ken Rosewall won their respective titles in 1968, the visitors stood rackets in hand to survey the facilities and take a tour round before a celebration lunch.
“We all had a really lovely time,” said Avon Cliff resident Anne Cardwell. “It was a beautiful sunny day and everyone was so welcoming.”
In return for access to the club, Colten Care becomes the latest business to support West Hants’ expanding youth academy which saw a junior tennis team win two categories at the National School Championships in 2017.
Peter Elviss, Chief Executive of The West Hants Club, said: “We and Colten Care have a shared commitment to promoting health and well-being and so our partnership is a natural fit.
“With increasing emphasis on the importance of staying active and healthy into later life we are delighted to welcome them on board.
“At the same time, partnerships such as this provide financial help to cover coaches’ fees, the costs of clothing and equipment, and scholarships for talented youngsters who may not normally have access to professional coaching and support.”
Tim Wookey, Director of Marketing and Companionship at Colten Care, said: “The West Hants Club is a long-established yet forward-looking country-club style sports centre and gym. It’s very conveniently located for a number of our homes.
“We’re thrilled to open up access to the club for our residents and their families through this new association.
“Many of our residents have a life-long love of tennis and sport in general. They will really appreciate the opportunity to come along, watch games and make use of what the club has to offer.”
As well as Avon Cliff, the partnership will benefit residents of the nursing and residential homes Canford Chase in Poole, Brook View in West Moors and Amberwood House in Ferndown. The forthcoming Bourne View home in Poole will be included when it opens in 2019.
Residents at two dedicated dementia care homes, Fernhill in Longham and The Aldbury in Poole, will also be able to visit the club.