Gem & Perera’s first game at Ampton Road, Edgbaston

It was in 1859 that lawn tennis pioneer Harry Gem and his friend JBA Perera first experimented with a game recognizably the forerunner of the modern game of lawn tennis and which they called Pelota, in homage to Perera’s Spanish…

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Court on Canvas – the book

An advanced copy of the Barber Institute’s book Court on Canvas has just arrived. It will be on sale when the Court on Canvas: Tennis in Art and A Gem of  Game exhibitions open next Friday 27th May.

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Happy birthday Harry

Today, 21st May, is the anniversary of Harry’s birth in 1819. To mark the occasion there will be a re-enactment next week of Harry’s early lawn tennis experiments with his friend Perera in the grounds of the latter’s home in…

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Councillor calls for new Edgbaston lawn tennis centre to be named after Harry

Latest news in today’s Birmingham Mail (Thursday 12th May 2011): Councillor Osborn, Chairman of Birmingham’s Planning Committee has suggested that the new tennis centre at the Edgbaston Priory Club be named after Harry. We can think of no better way…

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How to find Harry’s grave

Harry’s grave is in section P of Warstone Lane Cemetery in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter (see yellow dot). A permanent path leads towards the area and restoration work by the Friends of Key Hill and Warstone Lane Cemeteries has unearthed its…

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Appeal launched to conserve the Holy Grail of Lawn Tennis

A seemingly unremarkable brown book, now over 120 years old, is in urgent need of conservation before it goes on display to the public, for the first time in its history, in May at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts….

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Court on Canvas: Lawn Tennis in Art

There’s an exhibition coming up in May at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts, the University of Birmingham, which is the first ever to explore the subject of lawn tennis in art. It will feature also a large collection of…

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Marking Harry’s grave

Harry Gem is buried in Warstone Lane cemetery in the heart of Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter and his grave has been unmarked for many years. It is not known whether the original memorial stone has been removed and lost or laid…

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