Free tickets to some of the UK’s major tennis tournaments, including the Nottingham Open, will be offered to key workers for their ongoing efforts during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) announced last week that they’d be giving out more than 1,000 tickets across four events.
The Nottingham Open, a grass-court tennis tournament held in the city each June, is one of those events that free tickets will be given out for.
Tickets will be made available to key workers from the police, NHS, the fire service, local transport workers and other local authority workers from the local area.
Scott Lloyd, the chief executive of the LTA said: “We are delighted to be able to make these tickets available to key workers to thank them for their incredible efforts over the past 14 months.
“Everyone at the LTA is very grateful for the sacrifices they have made in what has been an exceptionally difficult time for the whole country and we sincerely hope that they will enjoy our events.”
It is understood that the number of tickets made available will vary depending on the venue.
As a result of the government’s covid-19 guidance, the tournament is set to operate at approximately 25% capacity this year in order to allow for social distancing.
Reaction to the announcement by the LTA from local tennis fans has been positive.
Gerry Radford, who works at West Bridgford Tennis Club, said: “I think it’s a great idea and certainly better than giving the tickets to corporate sponsors who inevitably leave the seats empty.
“Key workers deserve everything they get right now to be honest.”
Asked about his thoughts on the tournament in general, Mr Radford, who’s played tennis at a national level in the past, added: “It’s a fantastic tournament and it brings a high level of tennis to this area – which is really good.
“I don’t think the people of Nottingham realise how good the tournament is.”
Tickets will be distributed by local key worker organisations to their staff and therefore there is no central application process for this scheme.
However, the general public can purchase a limited number of tickets for the tournament that runs between June 5 to June 13, from next Tuesday via the LTA website.