Merton Sports and Social Club (MSSC)
MSSC is an integrated, inclusive sports and recreation club with both vision impaired and sighted members of all ages and abilities. We rent space from MertonVision but we are two distinct charities.
The club is based at The Guardian Centre, 67 Clarendon Road, London SW19 2DX. It is about ten minutes’ walk from Colliers Wood Underground Station on the Northern Line. We are always happy to meet and guide people to and from the station or any nearby bus stop.
There are contact email addresses for each of our main activities but, for general enquiries, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone Richard James on 07500 913 223.
One of MSSC’s most popular activities is tandem cycling. We are constantly on the lookout for new front riders and run regular “have a go” training sessions for those interested in learning to pilot a tandem. We aim to run two rides a month – a longish one (30 to 40 miles) on the first Sunday and a shorter one (15 miles or so) on the third Saturday. Each ride begins from the Guardian Centre. Those taking part meet at 8.30am to prepare the bikes and pair riders up to depart as near to 9.00 as possible. All rides include a refreshment stop at a cafe or pub. The aim is to be back by 1.00pm, though some longer rides may mean returning as late as 3.00pm. During the summer, there are usually midweek evening rides, as well as some long distance all day rides at weekends. One-to-one fitness training and practice sessions are available, by arrangement, from 6.30pm on Tuesdays, preceding the club’s weekly drop-in social.
MSSC has an active walking section. Its varied programme of walks consists of a broad range of excursions, including both urban and rural walks, and short and longer distances on simple and more challenging terrain. We try to organise a walk each month and an annual weekend away.
MSSC has exclusive use of the swimming pool at the Canon’s Leisure Centre, Mitcham, between 8.00pm and 9.00pm every Thursday evening. The session is open to all MSSC members at a cost of £3. For a further £3, door to door transport is available, on request, for members living within the borough of Merton.
The club holds a weekly drop-in social at the Guardian Centre each Tuesday evening between 8.00 and 10.30pm. The bar is always open, serving beers, wines, spirits and soft drinks. Tea and coffee are also available. Each month, there is a special social with a theme such as a quiz night, pub games evening, open mike night and summer barbecue. We have also hosted Sound Tennis and Goalball taster sessions.
MSSC has links with Merton Bowling Club and, during the bowls season, holds regular fixtures there, usually on Tuesday and Friday afternoons. We also occasionally compete against other bowling clubs. Out of season, we have an indoor bowls mat available for practice.
MSSC’s Theatre Buddies group organises trips to museums, exhibitions and audio described theatre. As with other activities, our sighted members guide and support those with a vision impairment and happily take advantage of the two for one concession usually available.
MSSC has its own canoes and hopes to have them back on the water in the near future. The club plays darts regularly and has also facilitated one-off activities, such as sky-diving and off-road driving; we will gladly look into running any new activity, if requested by members. MSSC has links with a network of disability sport organisations, and is therefore able to signpost members to other providers and activities where appropriate.
The annual subscription is £15 and runs from January to December, though there is a discount for anyone joining more than halfway through the year. It provides you with third party insurance cover and access to all MSSC events and activities, plus voting rights at the Annual General Meeting. All are welcome to come along and try out a few activities before deciding to join.
For our diary of events and up-to-date information, please visit www.mssc.org.uk