Home Our News Frome Leisure Centre's Badminton Extravaganza

Frome Leisure Centre's Badminton Extravaganza

DSCF0003In the absence of the National Leisure Centre Badminton Championships this year, Frome Leisure Centre took the bold step and decided to stage their own badminton championships.

Players from clubs, schools and sports centres within the East Somerset and West Wiltshire region were invited to come along and have a go.

Around 50 players of all ages from (mostly) Frome, Norton Hill, Writhlington and Phoenix (Trowbridge) descended onto Frome Leisure Centre over the weekend of 11th / 12th June to take part.

With some current and former National Leisure Centre Badminton champions amongst the entries, the scene was set for an exciting two days of play under the watchful eyes of Ben Keates – Frome Leisure Centre’s Sports Development Manager responsible for organising the event, and the Frome Junior Badminton Club Coach Clive Davis who was asked to help run it.

With 12 categories available, it was the Men’s Doubles that proved to be the most popular with 11 entries, and those who were fortunate to watch were treated to some impressive play, as each point was very closely fought over. In the end, it was Dan Jones & Pete Ross from Phoenix who dominated to win the event, despite Pete sustaining a minor injury in the semi-final.

Some of Frome’s young guns were also in action, and former Junior Clubbers Francesca Slay & Chris Harley convincingly won the Mixed Doubles. Francesca also collected a further trophy in the Ladies Singles and silver in the Ladies Doubles with partner Linda Perry, while Chris collected a silver in the Mens Singles after losing out in an epic battle with another Junior Clubber Daniel Willcox who took the trophy.

In the other events, defending National Leisure Centre O50 Ladies Doubles champions incurred a rare defeat at the hands of Ruth Charles & Issie Tucker. Ruth also picked up a 2nd trophy in the O50 Mixed Doubles with partner Andy Hendra, while Brian Garrett & Gary Holmes were an unstoppable force in the O50 Mens Doubles.

Sunday the 12th saw the Junior events take place, and for many of the entrants, this was their first exposure to competitive badminton. Nevertheless, despite being up against some experienced players, they all gave it their best even if some of the results were a little one-sided. However, Norton Hill’s James Shemilt and Sam Roberts took the U18 doubles crown, while James also won the U18 singles. In the U14 events, James O’Connor did the same – winning the singles and also doubles with partner Will Perry.

Ben Keates said at the end: “It was a fantastic weekend of badminton, it was all good humoured and a joy to watch. Everyone who took part thoroughly enjoyed themselves, and feedback on the day was definitely to do it again next year – who knows. Congratulations to all those who won; it was well deserved. A special thanks has to go to Clive Davis who did a lot of work in organising the event prior to, and as well as running it, and also to his helpers James O’Connor and Will Perry.”

Report by: Clive Davis

Picture: Sam Roberts & James Shemilt (U18's Doubles)

The results:




Under 14 Singles

James O’Connor

Bradley O’Connor

Under 14 Doubles

James O’Connor & Will Perry

Joseph Davies & Bradley O’Connor

Under 18 Singles

James Shemilt

Aaron Suarez

Under 18 Doubles

Sam Roberts & James Shemilt

Aaron Suarez & Dominic White

Ladies Singles

Francesca Slay

Ruth Charles

Ladies Doubles

Lindsay Copperman & Gill Moore

Linda Perry & Francesca Slay

Mens Singles

Daniel Willcox

Chris Harley

Mens Doubles

Dan Jones & Pete Ross

Andy Hendra & Daniel Willcox

Mixed Doubles

Francesca Slay & Chris Harley

Lindsay Copperman & Brian Shemilt

Over 50s Ladies Doubles

Ruth Charles & Issie Tucker

Rosemary Evans & Gill Moore

Over 50s Mens Doubles

Brian Garrett & Gary Holmes

Andy Hendra & Bob Knee

Over 50s Mixed Doubles

Ruth Charles & Andy Hendra

Issie Tucker & Geoff Cardnell