The Club is situated on the A6, four miles north of Derby in the centre of the village of Duffield. It is the County’s most senior club and prides itself on well maintained, comprehensive facilities and high playing standard and value for money.
It has an integrated Clubhouse with five courts, one a glass-back with spectator gallery, spacious changing rooms with saunas, pleasantly furnished lounge with bar, kitchen and dining room, a pool room, gymnasium and sports shop.
The first court was built in 1937 alongside a wooden tennis pavilion. 1972 this was replaced with a brick clubhouse and a second court. A further two courts, kitchen, dining and games rooms were provided in 1979. Then, in 1990 the whole of the central part was gutted and a completely revised clubhouse and glass-back court were built. In 1995 a gymnasium was added followed by, in 1996 the reroofing of the two original courts together with an outer insulating wall to Court 1, a covered walkway and a new main entrance. It is to be noted that all these developments were financed entirely by the members.
A team comprising of one lady and four men have been competing in the England Squash National Squash League [now the Premier Squash League] for 17 years, defeating Broxbourne in a dramatic final to win the league in 1998 and narrowly losing in the play offs to Lexden in 2002, but were finally champions again in 2005/6 and 2006/7. The former world No 1 and world champion Cassie Jackman MBE, represented the Club in the former NL with distinction for 7 seasons until she was forced to retire in 2005 with a back injury. Nick Matthew and Tania Bailey currently spearhead the PSL team PSL ties regularly attract over 100 supporters to the home ties. Duffield has the best away support of any team with 20 or so supporters travelling to away matches.
Nick Matthew, the current world number two who is set for his eighth season of playing for Benz-Bavarian Duffield in the Premier Squash League, was seeded first in India at the Commonwealth Games 2010 and dropped only two games in total on the way to topping the podium to receive his Gold medal. Nick is now aiming to regain his world number one spot.
Felix Frixou, proprietor of Benz-Bavarian Motors Duffield, who represents Cyprus in the Small Nations Tournament has sponsored the team 13 of the 17 years. 2010/11 will be the third season for the psl team under the management of Felix .
The Club takes great pride in giving PSL experience to England’s top junior players. Lee Beachill, James Willstrop, Marcus Berrett and Adrian Grant have previously represented the Club in the PSL when making the transition from junior to senior level. Local Club regulars Paul Hargrave and Kevin White who graduated through the Club’s junior system were founder members of the NL team back in 1994 and both are members of the squad for 2010/11. Kevin White continues to shine at international level, although his appearances have been limited by injury. He won the Mens O40 at the British Open as well as finishing runner up in the O35 event. Last season he also did the double of Mens and Mens O35 at the County Championships for the third time. Another local Club regular Laura Hill, is ranked 8 in England has turned in some excellent performances whenever she has been asked to deputise. Laura has also been the National Racketball Champion for several years.
Club member from being a junior and current psl squad member, Joel Hinds, a European Politics, Society and Economics graduate from Birmingham, struck gold in Melbourne in July 2010, to become the second individual British winner in the seventh World University Squash Championships, beating Germany’s Jens Schoor 11-6, 11-7, 11-2 in the final.
The Club has six men’s teams and one ladies’ teams participating in the Derbyshire County Leagues and two racketball teams.
The Club operates very active internal leagues, running throughout the year. Racketball has become increasingly popular over recent years.
The Club has a very active junior section and several juniors have been nationally ranked over the past 10 years. The success of our juniors at County and National level is attributed to quality coaching provided by Paul Hargrave and Lesley Sturgess. Paul represented England 28 times at junior level, was British Open U14 and U16 Champion and European U19 Junior Champion, with a high of England No 12 and World No 52. Coach Lesley Sturgess has represented England in the O45 Home internationals since 2004and recently claimed the Ladies O45 and O50 National Racketball titles. Lesley was also part of the winning team in the Ladies O40 County Championships and was also runner up to the World Champion in the Ladies O50 event at the British Open.
Juniors have always been encouraged.
Millie Tomlinson this year became the British Junior Closed U19 Champion, winning the Belgian, Irish and French Junior Opens and a team Gold medal at the European Junior Team Championships, adding to her many other successes at junior level.
There is currently a total membership of well over 600 including 100 juniors who have their own junior leagues and ladders with the more promising juniors gaining valuable experience representing the Club in the County senior Leagues.
The Club has established close links with the 3 schools in the Village and coaching is provided during the lunch break. Both individual and group coaching is provided straight after school, during the week and at weekends. The Ecclesbourne School team has had considerable success over the years in the National Schools Championships and the Bath Cup.
Of particular note has been the durability and commitment of some of the members. The late Denys Hope who died in 2005 was a member of 60 years standing and was unique in holding office continuously for 49 years, first as Secretary from 1943 to 1964 and then as Treasurer from 1964 to 1992. John White was Secretary from 1964 until 1998. John and his wife Pauline, former coach, served on the Committee for 33 years. Clive Wildsmith who joined the Committee in 1955 was President for 27 years. The current Treasurer Roy Squires has held the office since 1992 and Brian Hargrave who recently retired as Club Secretary clocked up 7 years and managed the PSL team for 14 years.
The Club is run entirely on a voluntary basis by an enthusuastic and hard working committee as well as many other volunteers.