CAGS Tennis Group
CAGS Tennis Group is the tennis section of Croydon Area Gay Society. It was formed in 1977, and has been playing regularly on Sunday afternoons ever since.
In June 1976 CAGS (then the Croydon CHE Group) held a "fun" tennis tournament for women at the Northampton Road Recreation Ground, followed by another in August.
Tennis however did not become a regular event in the Group's calendar until an article appeared in the July 1977 Newsletter under the caption "Anyone for Tennis". This was the start of the Tennis Group, and by October it was reported that 22 players had taken part. The venue chosen was the Park Hill Recreation Ground, Croydon.
The first tournament was held in the summer of 1978 with 20 entries, but matches proved slow to arrange, and the results were not announced until the following January. Singles and doubles tournaments heve been held twice a year ever since. There have also been occasional handicap events, and one-day American tournaments, raising money for causes such as the ACE Project.
Between 1983 and 2001 the group played 33 matches against the London Gay Tennis Club: Croydon won 19, London won 12, with one match abandoned, and one match drawn. Home matches were played at Trumble Gardens, away matches at the Islington Tennis Centre or at Chiswick and Barn Elms.
By 2011 the state of the Trumble Gardens courts had been deteriorating for some time, and there had occasionally been problems with local youths. So from the start of 2012 the group has moved to the much more prestigious surroundings of Court 4 of the National Sports Centre in Crystal Palace Park.