Page last updated at 16:03 GMT, Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Ospreys star Filo Tiatia joins Swansea tennis battle

Campaigners fighting to save Swansea Tennic Centre
Filo Tiatia said his children had been using Swansea Tennis Centre since they first arrived in Wales

Ospreys rugby star and former New Zealand All Black Filo Tiatia is backing a campaign to save Swansea's Tennis Centre from closure.

He said his children were regular users of the courts near the Liberty Stadium where he plays and coaches.

A final decision is due to be taken on Monday about the centre's future.

Swansea council which must find £17m said the centre received a £120,000 annual subsidy and cost more to run per visit than any of its leisure centres.

But Tiatia, a player and coach with the Ospreys rugby region, says shutting it would deprive many children of the only indoor courts in the area.

Ospreys rugby star and former New Zealand All Black Filo Tiatia
Tiatia is a player and coach with the Ospreys rugby region

He also said it would make it harder to get the message across about the importance of exercise.

"It's a shame that we are hearing that they are trying to close this facility," he said.

"Like most of the parents I'm quite concerned about them closing it."

Swansea council said the centre, which had over £500,000 spent on it in 2003, would cost £2.15m to keep open for the next 10 years because of "essential refurbishment... maintenance and running costs."

It said there was still a huge variety of sport and recreational opportunities available in the city including 50 other tennis courts.

It said it was "facing tough financial times" and had to "prioritise some services over others" to focus on vital, front-line services.



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SEE ALSO
City tennis centre closure backed
12 Feb 10 |  South West Wales
Campaign 'to save' tennis centre
09 Feb 10 |  South West Wales
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05 Aug 03 |  South West Wales

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