A Bournemouth tennis player has pledged to continue playing as long as he can after celebrating his 90th birthday last weekend.
Norman Shelley, who lives in East Howe, joined Victoria Avenue tennis club in 1959 at the age of 31, and has played there ever since.
The club held a celebration on Saturday, with members gathering to honour Norman’s long history at the club, as well as his landmark birthday.
Norman believes that tennis is the perfect sport to help keep active, with the nature of the game its major selling point.
He said: “Providing you’re in good health and it doesn’t hurt you at all, my tip is to keep doing exercise.
“Tennis is a great exercise, because you can enjoy the game and the exercise comes naturally. It’s not like going to a gym where you go through certain disciplines, tennis provides its own incentive.
“You find yourself running after a ball, it all comes naturally and that’s what it’s all about.
“I play it to keep fit and because I enjoy it. I’ll play as long as I am able to, until I’m unable to run anymore, which is often the reason you have to give up.”
Norman has played tennis since his early twenties, and revealed a trip to the doctors has been the inspiration for keeping him on the court.
He added: “When I was a quite young, I went to the doctors with an ache, nothing serious, and during my visit I said to the doctor ‘oh I wonder if I should give up tennis?’”
“He said to me, ‘I have a surgery full of people waiting to see me. If they all played tennis they wouldn’t be there’. They were his words and I think he was right.
“We all have to stop doing things at one stage when age catches up. One of our members who died last year was playing up until a month before he died, and he was 96, so I am a bit of a stripling compared to him.”