Masters

Before the club was formed, in 1818, tennis was under the control of the monarch who appointed a “Master of the King’s (or Queen’s) Tennis Courts” to run the courts on a day-to-day basis.

Some of these Masters taught the game while others – like the last, Major William Beresford, who had been appointed in 1815 (before the club was formed) and had somehow managed to retain the position until his death in 1883 – remained aloof. The two Webbs on the other hand also taught tennis, as did Anthony Ansley who is shown by surviving records to have been Henry VIII’s professional in the years 1528 – 32 (and possibly for a longer period), and may have been the first Master of the King’s Tennis Courts.

Gedeon Lozier (a Master in 17th century) built the court at St. James’s Palace for the Prince of Wales (later Charles I).

All of the Masters from John Webb onwards had the use of the Keeper’s House; now the club rooms and accommodation for the head professional.

Name Tenure
William Beresford 1815 – 1883
Charles Meynell 1791 – 1815
William Chetwynd 1764 – 1765
Richard Beresford 1765 – 1791
1762 – 1764
Charles Fitzroy 1728 – 1762
Thomas Chaplin 1708 – 1728
Horatio Moore 1697 – 1708
Henry Villiers 1689-1697
Thomas Cooke 1660 – 1689
Ralph Bird 1656 – 1660
John Webb
(jointly with Gedeon Lozier until 1631)
c1621 – 1656
Jehu Webb 1604 – c1621
Edward Stone 1591 – 1604
William Hope 1584 – 1591
Thomas Johns 1543 – 1584
Oliver Kelly c1540 – 1543

Comments on this entry are closed.