About The Albert Club
Established in 1874, we are a not-for-profit sports and social club with a long and proud history.
We offer a diverse range of sporting activities (tennis, bowls, table tennis and snooker), cultural and social events. Our sporting activities are aimed at high performers, social and players developing their game and we work hard to encourage participation with under-represented groups and develop links with the local community.
The Albert is a members club but one that welcomes guests who are encouraged to become members. We are proud of how our members feel about the club and offer a warm welcome to all.
All of this is made possible by a professional team of paid staff and dedicated volunteers.
The Albert has always been a non-profit organisation. The majority of our income comes from our annual Tennis and Social memberships as well as bar sales made to members and through private bookings and events.
We also rely on grant funding - we've been fortunate to secure large and small grants in the past for our floodlights, fencing, grounds, defibrillator and changing rooms to name a few.
The club's roof is the original 1870's roof. It's been on our maintenance list for a long time but other projects have always taken priority, such as our much needed changing room and toilet refurbishment which was completed in 2017 and, more recently, urgent need for replacement tennis courts.
However, we're at the point where the deterioration of the roof is really starting to show. Especially in the newly refurbished toilets and changing rooms, which are becoming damaged due to a hidden leak. Other areas of the club are also suffering, including the table tennis room, which if not fixed could jeopardise the section completely due to health and safety. Our snooker room is also affected, often being cold and damp in the winter months. Tiles are missing, and it also un-insulated, making winter in the club uncomfortable during the colder weather.
New Outdoor Canopy
Made of light weight fabric and bits of scaffolding attached the railings, our current awnings were only ever intended for temporary use a couple of times a year, i.e. at the Beer Festival or Fete.
They offer some protection, but they're far from ideal for permanent use and are certainly not designed for heavy wind and rain. However we've been left with no choice to keep them up for the last couple of months. They've somehow survived a couple of storms, but they are nearing the end of their life.
With our inside capacity reduced due to Covid restrictions and social distancing, more people are now having to use our outdoor seating. We've invested in some outdoor heaters as we need to keep our bar footfall up to support the club.
However, we really need some proper covers. Our tennis and bowls players would also benefit hugely from a proper shelter, whether its rainy bowls' match nights for keep the players and scorers dry or for tennis players to seek refuge when the heavens open and the clubhouse is closed, especially during school holidays when the kid's camps are running.
Sadly, due to Covid, our bar is no longer trading as much as it usually would; no private functions, no children's parties, no corporate events, no club events and limited numbers inside. Therefore, while there is some money put aside, it's not enough to cover the costs.
So, we're setting a target of £20,000! That, all being well, will be enough to repair or replace the roof and provide a substantial covering for our outdoor areas. It will mean the hard work that went into refurbishing the toilets won't be in vain, and that our members, sports teams, user groups and visitors can enjoy the clubhouse, whether inside or out, in comfort, allowing our bar to trade at a sustainable level
A Community Club
The Albert plays a key part in the local community. We host parent and toddler groups, mini-first aid and act as a meeting place for local community groups including resident associations and conservation groups.
We hold tennis open days to encourage participation and have a structured coaching programme including ‘Rusty Rackets’ to help new and returning players back on court. Our sporting facilities are also available to try out prior to joining.
Our tennis outreach programme includes regular sessions with local schools as well as summer and half term junior camps. We also engage proactively with parents and encourage them through our adult coaching programme to take up tennis. We have also previously held tennis sessions for young people with learning difficulties.
Our private business bookings also make use of our sport facilities and help raise awareness of their availability to those within our catchment area. Last year we hosted a multi-sport event for the Didsbury Business Games, to help raise money for The Christie.
Open bowls sessions are held in summer to encourage take-up and encourage new members of both genders to join and play.
We also hold annual social events which are open to the public and at those we showcase our sporting facilities and activities.
Finally, a short message from our friend (and member), John Thompson.