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Chorley aims to become squash hub
5:44pm Tuesday 5th March 2013 in Sport
PLANS are in motion to make Chorley a ‘hub of activity’ for squash after the town hosted East Lancashire’s first professional tournament.
Following the success of the CourtCare Open and roadshows held in schools across the borough, a scheme to establish the game in the area is now under way.
The $10,000 tournament was organised by world number three Laura Massaro and her brother Chris Lengthorn, head squash coach at the national centre in Manchester – he also headed up the roadshows, coaching and a school event.
With sponsors agreeing to back the CourtCare Open for the next five years, Lengthorn has set a similar time scale to get more schools playing squash.
“We want Chorley to become a hub of activity for squash,” said Lengthorn. “We know it is something that won’t happen overnight but we are very encouraged by the response and feedback we have had from schools.
“The Open itself was superb and I don’t really think it could have gone any better.
“The aim has always been to make this a long term objective and that is exactly what we are trying to do as we attempt to create a squash legacy.”
That legacy begins this week when David Lloyd Chorley opens its doors for the first time to non members.
Community sessions for six to 15-year-olds, which will run for 10 weeks, begin on Thursday (4-5pm).
The scheme has the backing of Chorley Borough Council’s sports development team.
“This is the exit route from the roadshows and the coaching we have already held,” added Lengthorn. “We just didn’t want it to end after the tournament so this will give youngsters the opportunity to carry on playing or try it out for the first time.
“We know it will take some time and we have to deal with pre-conceived ideas of what people think about squash.
“But it is a great game and hopefully within four or five years, squash will be established in the town.”