Sport

Twin tributes in honour of Ipswich's special ladies

TOUCHING TRIBUTE: Erin Manson's husband John Manson (right) and family members.
TOUCHING TRIBUTE: Erin Manson's husband John Manson (right) and family members. Rob Williams

TWO of Ipswich's most dedicated volunteers have had their memories recognised in a special fashion.

Del Rowlings and Erin Manson devoted their lives to the tennis community of Ipswich. Between the two, they had spent more than 50 years filling any role needed, from playing to presiding.

Now two park benches installed at the George Alder Tennis Centre and named after the pair will continue to provide support for future generations.

Ipswich Tennis official Jill Franklin said the memory of two amazing women will live on.

"Volunteers are one of the most amazing people in our community in many different capacities,” she said. "Some spend time short term, others for long periods.

"The ladies we honour today have served periods of over 50 years as committee members, players and supporters of tennis in Ipswich.

"It is fitting that we place two seats at the George Alder Tennis Centre to honour these two special volunteers.”

Del Rowlings' family poses at the tribute bench to Del at the George Alder Tennis Centre on Thursday.
Del Rowlings' family poses at the tribute bench to Del at the George Alder Tennis Centre on Thursday. Rob Williams

Family members from both the Rowlings and Manson families gathered to show their appreciation of the twin memorials celebrating their special matriarchs.

Both passionate lovers of the game, Franklin said the hard working volunteers would be sorely missed.

"Erin was a foundation member of mid-week ladies tennis in 1964 firstly as a committee member then as president, life member, patroness and player,” she said.

"She worked tirelessly often behind the scenes for the growth and development of the club and much of the club's success can be attributed to her love of the game.

"Del was a committee member and secretary of Mid Week Ladies for 50 years, a life member and player right up to near her passing.

"She was an amazing organiser and Thursday fixtures will not be the same without her.

"She portrayed a great sense of humour and always played her tennis in the spirit of the game.

"Both these ladies are sadly missed by players, past players, and supporters of tennis in Ipswich.”

Topics:  george alder tennis centre ipswich tennis memorial volunteers