Pandemic claims Hunstanton Tennis Tournament, Rotary Kite Festival and Norton Hill Railway weekends

Pandemic claims Hunstanton Tennis Tournament, Rotary Kite Festival and Norton Hill Railway weekends
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As cases rise in the county, sporting and fund-raising events due to have taken place during July and August this year are the latest victims of the pandemic.

The Tennis Tournament Committee had hoped to run the event this year after the cancellation of last year’s Centenary tournament.

Dubbed the ‘Glastonbury of Tennis’, the tournament attracts competitors from around the country and is the largest event of its kind in the UK. Having won the Competition of the Year in the Lawn Tennis Awards for their work in the community in 2019 the organising committee said that: “It is with a heavy heart that we sadly announce the cancellation of the 2021 Hunstanton Lawn Tennis Tournament.”

In a statement the organising committee said: “Throughout our planning the Tournament committee remained extremely mindful of advice and information from the Government, the Lawn Tennis Association and the local authorities concerning the step-by-step approach out of the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown. With the postponement of Step 4 on the Government Roadmap, the continued uncertainty and the recent rise in positive cases the committee believes that it cannot safely promote this year’s Tournament.”

The impact on the local area and its residents and the consideration of the health of the spectators and competitors were also deciding factors.

The date for the very belated Centenary Tournament in 2022 is Sunday 14th August to Saturday 20th August.

Hunstanton and District Rotary Club’s very popular Kite Festival and Classic Car Rally held at Smithdon High School in Hunstanton last took place in 2019 when it celebrated its 22nd edition is one of the club’s major fundraising events. The other is the Norton Hill Light Railway Weekend held by kind permission of Michael Schumann in Snettisham.

WEB Norton Hill Railway CP

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The 2019-2021 Rotary President John Crofts said: “The stand out moments of my first year in office were Kite and Norton Hill where £25,000 was raised and that enabled us to do a number of things and help many local organisations.

“A year ago we knew we wouldn’t be able to have these events but none of us really anticipated that they wouldn’t be able to go on this year; it is very sad. Let’s hope that 2022 we can get back to doing things in schools and other places that we so enjoyed in the past.”