16th July 2018

16th July 2018 was a momentous day for Real Tennis at Prested.

Honoured to be visited by HRH the Earl of Wessex as part of his 2018 Real Tennis Challenge, our fantastic team got together over 80 local youngsters all keen to learn a bit more about the sport.

The Earl arrived by helicopter from his home at Bagshot Park, and was soon on court with youngsters after meeting various local dignitaries at Prested Health Club.

It was an informal visit, with plenty of laughs and good natured banter on court and off. The Earl was on good form and enjoyed chatting with many of the children, some of whom were interviewed by local press and the ITV crew who were present.

After a busy morning with the youngsters, Prince Edward continued the action on court by playing two sets of doubles with selected Prested members, and a final set with Mike Carter who built the courts back in 1999, Rob Fahey (current Men’s world champion and Prested resident professional) and xx

The last set was a fiercely fought one, back and forward from deuce to advantage and back again, resulting in the end with a win for the Earl and xx

Time to go have a lie down? Not a bit of it! After chatting and mingling with the guests who had arrived to watch the last set and enjoy a champagne reception, the Earl retired briefly and reappeared in black tie to host a gala dinner in the hall.  Walking across the car parks to the hall in the beautiful July evening sunshine, the Earl stopped to pose for a photograph with Prested staff who had assembled to greet him and then it was into the Orangery for a beautiful three-course dinner.

All in all it was a great day for Real Tennis, for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards and for Real Tennis. We’d like to thank everyone involved and hope you had a great time if you were here for any of it.

Staff at Prested with HRH the Earl of Wessex


The day’s events covered in Colchester Gazette



May 2018

Exciting news from Prested is that we are going to be visited by HRH Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex in July as part of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards Scheme Tennis Challenge.

HRH The Earl of Wessex,  who now heads up the DofE Awards scheme, is seeking to play every Real Tennis court in the world – to raise significant funds to enable more young people to start their DofE both in the UK and abroad.

About the DofE Awards

Achieving a Duke of Edinburgh’s Award isn’t the end of a DofE journey, it’s just the beginning. Many Award holders go on to embrace a lifetime of volunteering, pursue a career using their honed skill or develop a love for the outdoors.

HRH The Earl of Wessex is no different to other Award holders and, over 30 years on from achieving his Gold Award, is continuing to improve on skills learned during his Physical section activity, playing Real Tennis, with the aim of supporting a new generation of DofE participants to experience the DofE’s life-changing benefits.

Throughout 2018  HRH The Earl of Wessex will seek to play every Real Tennis court in the world – to raise significant funds to enable more young people to start their DofE both in the UK and abroad. At nearly 50 Real Tennis locations worldwide (28 courts in the UK), HRH will visit DofE centres, host fundraising events, meet DofE participants and volunteers, and test his Real Tennis skills by playing over 80 sets of tennis with young people and other community members.

The vital funds that The Earl raises will help the DofE Charity to transform the lives of young people from all backgrounds and circumstances, across the globe; equipping them with the skills and attributes to reach their potential in life and work.

There are many opportunities to be involved in this unique undertaking.

HRH’s tour will encompass a full day of DofE activities at 25 locations across the UK:

  • Total of 81 sets of Real Tennis played by December 2018, including exhibition matches
  • Visits to schools and communities celebrating young people who are doing their DofE
  • Daytime and evening fundraising events to enable more young people to benefit from the DofE.

Register your interest in the DofE Tennis Challenge 2018 events

Tour venues 

  1. Cambridge University Tennis Court (2 courts) – January 2018
  2. Bristol Real Tennis Club – February 2018
  3. Holyport Real Tennis Club – February 2018
  4. Manchester Tennis & Racquet Club – March 2018
  5. Queen’s Club (2 courts) – March 2018
  6. MCC, Lord’s Ground – March 2018
  7. Seacourt Tennis Club – April 2018
  8. Petworth House Tennis Club – May 2018
  9. Newmarket Real Tennis Club – May 2018
  10. Radley College – May 2018
  11. Canford School – June 2018
  12. Hardwick House – June 2018
  13. Oratory Tennis Club – June 2018
  14. Hatfield House Tennis Club – June 2018
  15. Hyde Tennis Club – June 2018
  16. Prested Hall Racket Club (2 courts) – July 2018
  17. Fairlawn Estate – July 2018
  18. Falkland Palace Royal Tennis Club – July 2018
  19. Leamington Tennis Court Club – September 2018
  20. Moreton Morrell Tennis Court Club – September 2018
  21. Wellington College Real Tennis Club – September 2018
  22. Jesmond Dene Real Tennis Club – October 2018
  23. Oxford University Tennis Court – November 2018
  24. Middlesex University Real Tennis Club – November 2018
  25. Royal Tennis Court, Hampton Court – November 2018

There are lots of exciting opportunities for both members and non-members, juniors and seniors.  Tables at a gala dinner will be sold on a first come, first serve basis, HRH will play 3 sets of doubles with both juniors and seniors.

For more information on how you can get involved in sponsorship, to request information about the gala dinner or to enter the raffle to win the chance of playing a match with or against HRH, please email here.