The Championships, Wimbledon, commonly known simply as Wimbledon, is the oldest tennis tournament in the world and is regarded by many as the most prestigious.

Some unknown facts about Wimbledon:

  • A final total of approximately 250 Ball Boys and Girls (BBGs) from around 700 applicants work at The Championships, Wimbledon. The applicants come from local schools. I went to one of the local schools but was completely overlooked for the role of Ball Boy – this despite my complete lack of interest in PE/Games/Sports, regular instances of ‘forgetting’ my kit, hayfever and being unable to catch a ball. These days we could have sued the school and probably won compensation!
  • When the tennis court covers started to come on because of rain, my Mother always rushed to the garden to take in her washing as that meant it would rain at our house in five minutes.
  • The local police produce a guide called ‘Do’s and Don’ts for the Wimbledon Championships’ and I’ve copied that below. What is most impressive about their effort is how difficult it is to attempt humour in our currently sterile, politically-correct World.

Do’s and Don’ts for the Wimbledon Championships

Getting to the event

🎾 When parking in the local area please respect residents homes. That dropped curb may look like a water slide on a hot day but picking your car up from impound is very upsetting…

🎾 Best tip for car parks? Use public transport! All our officers know precisely how to get to the tennis, so please ask us constantly how to get there. Get the tube to Southfields for the win. (Further journey details can be found here though – There are also links direct from Wimbledon Town Centre, just follow the fascinators.

At the event

🎾 Turn off your phone when seated at the match. We are not responsible for people “tutting” at you when that all important PPI call comes in.

🎾 Hydrate and sun cream. Last year we, as did our London Ambulance Service NHS Trust chums, looked after a lot of people for dehydration and over heating. So plenty of water people!

🎾 You can’t sit in the royal box. They are very particular about it, so don’t ask as being turned down is upsetting.

🎾 Unfortunately we cannot accept a glass of Pimms (We’d really would love to as it’s a lovely gesture and thanks for thinking of us. I mean you don’t even know us and you’re being amazing. Now I feel bad for saying no).

🎾 Wimbledon dress code. To be let into the event grounds under no circumstances are pyjamas to be worn. Also no socks with sandals, that’s so 1980’s.

🎾 For the large TV near Henman Hill / Murray Mound or whatever it’s called this year, please bring 50p for the meter.

🎾 Please don’t leave your possessions unattended as they get lonely. Unscrupulous people may try to help out by taking them home for you. Not your home mind, so please be aware of your strawberries at all times.

The All England Lawn Tennis Club
Church Road
London SW19 5AE

Tel: +44 (0)20 8944 1066