The Dracaena Centre in Falmouth is celebrating after being awarded National Lottery funding from Sport England.

The grant will allow the community centre to set up and run a brand-new mixed table-tennis session, and to continue supporting a ladies-only session originally set up with funding from Table Tennis England. The new money has been awarded as part of the national Return to Play campaign, which aims to encourage people to take up activities again and to socialise after lockdown.

Both ventures start up on Thursday September 16 with the mixed Return to Play session running from 11.30am to 1pm, and the ladies Bat n Chat session from 1.30 to 3pm.

Table-tennis coach Jane Leigh, who’ll be running both sessions, is thrilled to have been awarded the funding. She says: ‘Indoor sports like table tennis were hit hard by lockdown, with activity being suspended for months. This grant will enable the Centre to offer sessions at a subsidised price of £3 for the first five weeks, and hopefully that will encourage plenty of players to come and have a go.’

The sessions are open to all ages and abilities, and bats and balls are provided.

Richard May, Dracaena Centre manager, adds: ‘We’re delighted to have been awarded this grant which means we can keep the ladies’ session running and also introduce a new mixed session. Thank you to everyone who plays the National Lottery, as these funds are vital in helping grass-roots sport to return after the pandemic.’