From Friday, 16 June visitors and locals alike will be able to play table tennis across the city, all summer.
The highly successful Ping! festival offers 25 tables in public places across the city, with the invitation to grab a bat and have a great time. All the equipment is provided at no cost.
2016 was a record-breaking year for Ping! in Nottingham, exceeding all targets with over 57,000 people in the city picking up a bat and playing table tennis at one of the tables during the summer.
As in previous years, tables will be sited in familiar locations across the city including Nottingham Train Station, Wollaton Park, Nottingham Castle, and Nottingham Playhouse. A new addition this year will be the ‘Ping Parlour’ at the National Ice Stadium with three tables on Bolero Square with various social events to go alongside.
As well as tables being hosted at popular locations across the city and along tram stops from Forest Recreation Ground to Clifton Central, the project will also be visiting popular events in Nottingham including Engaging players and visitors at the Aegon Open tennis, the Riverside Festival and the Mixed Relay Triathlon coming to the City in September. There will also be tables at a wide selection of community events and fun days, and at local parks.
The tables will remain long after the Ping! festival is over; installed in parks and estates on a permanent basis or donated to organisations for the benefit of the community.
In order to keep the tables maintained with stocks of balls and bats, the project requires Ping! volunteers. They will also visit the tables to encourage people to play and generate a friendly, competitive spirit. Anybody able to spare a few hours to help should get in touch with the project at www.pingengland.co.uk/nottingham
Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture said: “We know in Nottingham there is a huge demand for Table Tennis and a desire to play at any given opportunity. It’s a great activity you can take part in across the city this summer and it’s completely free. Put a table down, and within minutes you’ve got people playing. People pick up a bat and have a knock at various places from parks to bars and even shopping centres. You don’t even need a partner – just challenge a passer-by to a game. I’ll certainly be looking for a game or two!”
Table Tennis England Area Lead – Mark Willerton said: “Free table tennis may be enough to get most people playing but others may a little more shy. My advice is to wade in and get involved. Come as a group or come on your own. There are lots of friendly folks on hand to come and give you a game and I’m certain we’ll get even more ping pong players in Nottingham this summer than last!”