It was all happening in Mallorca. Now the tennis circus has upped sticks after its sunny preparation and headed en mass to Wimbledon.  The home of lawn tennis and certainly the most famous grand slam in the world. 

It is not only prestigious, but with a record total prize money of £50 million, there’s much at stake for the players. The men’s and ladies’ singles champions will scoop a record £2.7million, with the runner up receiving £1.4 million. Simply for playing in the first round each player has been awarded  £60,000. 


Wimbledon is the largest single annual catering operation in Europe, according to 2023 figures supplying:

50 Tonnes of Kentish strawberries (over 2.5 million individual berries) swimming in 14,968 litres of dairy cream.  Remarkably defying inflation, they remain at £2.50 a box, the same price since 2010! These are handpicked at sunrise, driven 31.5 miles up the motorway and served on the same day. Any remaining are immediately frozen to be made into jam for the following year. They are now boxed in innovative prize-winning packaging that uses seaweed to create completely biodegradable food containers. 

Also consumed during the fortnight:

102,144 scones

257,381 cups of tea

341,202 glasses of Pimms

Moreover, Wimbledon remains one of the few major sporting events that allows visitors to bring along their own food.


Grass is the most inconsistent idiosyncratic surface of all.  A living plant, making it totally unpredictable as weather conditions and atmosphere can affect the speed. Lighter and faster on a warm dry day, eg Mallorca. Balls heavier and slower on a cold, damp day, think London in high summer SW19.

Ten tonnes of grass seed is used each year. All courts are re-lined, rolled and mown daily during the Championships and renewed every year. 

The 100mm and 50 mm lines you may think are painted. They are actually a transfer wheel marker used to apply a while compound containing titanium dioxide to make it durable. 

Approximately 27,000 plants are carefully planted around the grounds under the scrutiny of Head Gardener Martyn Falconer, who has worked at the club for 24 years. After the championships some of the blooms are donated to local charities in the Merton and Wandsworth area. 


This year Conchita Martinez will be honoured on the 30th Anniversary of becoming the first Spaniard to win the ladies’ singles title along with Ken Rosewall, now 89, who was four-time runner-up in the men’s singles and between 1954 and 1974 twice won the doubles.


A new greener Wimbledon has seen a significant project to a introduce plastic free environmental friendly championship. Gone are the traditional plastic bowls of strawberries, to be replaced with 100% biodegradable deep cartons that really don’t feel Wimbledon when awash with cream. All spectators have the opportunity to buy unlimited refills of Evian for £5, after paying a £1 deposit for a reusable container.

Bird boxes have been positioned around the grounds to provide homes for nesting birds. I note ball-persons have been trained to chase off said birds when they disrupt play.

Certainly, Wimbledon has changed in this 137th Championship. Jumping on the politically correct wagon stating: “Our colleagues have received Environment Positive Awareness training as part of the orientation process for the Championships.”  Who says Wimbledon is too old to change with the times?