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Step up to the table with Ping!
England’s love affair with table tennis is set to continue as the innovative street ping pong initiative Ping! returns to our streets this summer. This time it’s bigger than ever, with a record 12 regions taking part and more than 500 public ping-pong tables available for freeplay across London, Liverpool, Bristol, Brighton & Hove, Birmingham, Cambridge, Cornwall, Kettering, Leicester, Middlesbrough, Northampton, Oxford and Sheffield. To join the fun, simply borrow a bat from the side of the table and play ball!
Backed by National Lottery funding from Sport England, Ping! launched this week in Bristol and will roll out across the rest of the country next week with a special floating ping pong party on HMS President in London. Director of Sport Phil Smith said: “I am delighted that Ping! is returning for a fourth summer. With over 350,000 people taking part last year, the success of this project and the growing appetite for ping pong is clear to see. I would encourage everyone to pick up a bat and give this sport a go.”
Now in its fourth year, Ping! continues to take table tennis to eye-catching and unexpected locations. From the cloisters of Cambridge to the car manufacturing plants of Cowley, Brighton beach to Bristol Prison, Ping! tables will pop up at shopping centres, stations, stately homes, windmills and even a donkey sanctuary.
Ping! is being delivered through a unique partnership between Sing London, a participatory arts organisation and the English Table Tennis Association (ETTA). Collette Hillier, Creative Director at Sing London said: “A ping pong table is a relatively small intervention, but it’s amazing how much fun it can generate.”
Bill Shearer, Head of Operations at the ETTA said: “Table tennis is a hugely inclusive sport, for all ages, shapes and sizes and we look forward to a summer of ping pong mania. Don’t miss out”.
In addition to free play, Ping! tables offer a scheduled programme of activities entitled Random Acts of Ping Pong. These span master classes to Meet Your Match singles events; Ping! Revolution bike rides around London to Ping! ‘n’ Punt on the banks of the Cam.
To find out where your nearest table is check the website for details at www.pingengland.co.uk