Enjoy Worcester Tennis Club's Rich History

As part of the agreement when the Worcester Tennis Club (WTC) merged with Holden Towers Tennis Club, a Legacy Committee was formed. One of its responsibilities was to provide space in the clubhouse for trophies and memorabilia pertaining to the history of the WTC. In keeping with that mandate, the Legacy Committee and others have provided an on-line history which we hope will be of interest to you. 

The following images were taken from WTC 75th Anniversary Program Booklet

Following are some of Worcester Tennis Club's milestones. If you are interested in reading a more detailed history, click on the 75th Anniversary program to view and download a pdf. 

1907 - WTC was established at 69 Sever Street.

1923 - Adjacent land was purchased and a new clubhouse was built to replace the original structure and grandstand.

Sanctioned tournaments attracted nationally ranked players through the first third of the century.

Late 1930’s and early ’40’s - During the depression and Second World War, membership dipped but quickly revived to all-time highs after the war.

1964 - Times were changing. Many social clubs, sports-related clubs and even neighborhoods in Worcester during their history had discriminatory membership practices. In 1964 the WTC members voted unanimously to eliminate the religious affiliation question on the application thereby opening up and increasing membership.

1969-1980’s - There was a long waiting list for membership.

1976 - It took 7 years but finally there were enough votes to change the Club Rules from all-white tennis apparel to allow pastel colors.

1980 - For the first time a full-time tennis pro was hired to replace both the groundskeeper and pros who came to give lessons.

Mid-1980’s - The Karen Dudley Clinic was established in memory of a former junior member. The free clinic for children was on Saturdays in June—advertised and open to the public.

Early 2000’s - The tennis boom of the 1970’s and ’80’s was over and there was no longer a waiting list. Many more women had full-time jobs and therefore less time to play tennis. The club, surrounded by an inner-city neighborhood, had limited parking and no lights which were drawbacks for those who worked late hours.

2007 -100th Anniversary. The WTC clubhouse was recognized by Preservation Worcester with a marker signifying it as a well-maintained historic building.

2012 - After over 100 years members said goodbye to two popular traditions. These new rules (common to many tennis clubs) were implemented requiring members to sweep the courts after play and to make reservations for court time. One thing that would never change over the years was the beautiful red clay courts.

2015 - WTC members voted to merge with Holden Towers Tennis Club. In order to accommodate the membership increase, funds from the sale of the club to Becker College were used to construct 3 new lower courts and renovate the existing Holden Towers Tennis Club. Construction was completed in 2017.

2018 - The name of the merged club became Holden Towers/Worcester Tennis Club.


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