A VOLUNTEER from Aspatria is celebrating after being recognised for helping to save his local tennis club.

Don Saul, 64, has won the Lawn Tennis Association's (LTA) Volunteer of the Year Award for the North of England.

Last year Don, who lives in High Ackworth, West Yorkshire, won the LTA's Yorkshire Volunteer of the Year Award.

He was appointed chairman of Ackworth tTennis Club in 2012 and was a member of a consortium who saved it, when it was on the verge of extinction in 2018 with just 17 members - but now membership has passed the 150 mark.

A retired head of science teacher Don, who attended The Nelson Thomlinson School, Wigton, is now presiding over a club with more than 80 members receiving weekly coaching, two competitive teams and an outreach programme delivering coaching to over 2000 pupils in 17 state primary schools every year.

Don said: "This is a story of what a small club can do and it’s all been achieved through co-operation between partners, the club, Ackworth school, Yorkshire Tennis, the LTA and The Tim Henman Foundation."

Paul Bennett, head of region - north, for the LTA said: "It is fantastic that Don has been recognised for all his work and efforts in opening tennis up as the lead volunteer at Ackworth Tennis Club. "It's a real testament to Don that he has been recognised as the winner in the North."

Laurie Haines, an LTA participation partner, said: "It s a fantastic and deserved achievement, he's worked tirelessly for the club at the heart of the community."