TENNIS is taking off in Inverclyde this summer as youngsters of all ages enjoy an ace time at action-packed summer camps.

Both Ardgowan and Fort Matilda are running programmes for nursery tots and schoolkids.

It follows recent plans to build an indoor tennis facility in Greenock, with the support of the Judy Murray Foundation.

The head coach of both local clubs, Stephanie Swan, believes there is growing interest in the game.

She said: "The camps have been very popular and we have even played through the rain some days.

"The kids are so enthusiastic about tennis.

"It has so many benefits, from fitness and other skills like co-ordination and getting out in the fresh air."

"Anyone can play tennis from three to 80 and it is cheap for children compared with other sports.

"Their parents can play with them as well - we want people to see that tennis is an inclusive sport and not elitist."

The sport's organisers are keen to attract more families to the sport with a children's membership at both clubs costing only £30 a year.

Inverclyde Leisure have just submitted a planing application for a proposed state-of-the-art facility at the Rankin Park.

It would include three indoor courts and both Tennis Scotland and the Judy Murray Foundation would provide opportunities for coaching qualifications, leagues and free programmes.

Fort Matilda convenor Chris Jewell said: "This is a pioneering project with Inverclyde leading the way.

"The Judy Murray Foundation is really committed to the area and this will help us train more qualified coaches in schools and organisations, so that more people can play tennis.

"It is a sport anyone can play."