After 120 years Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club votes to admit women to full membership.

Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club in Dublin has been at the forefront of Irish tennis since it was established in 1877. But in all those years the exclusive £700 a year club has refused to accept women as members. To date, women at the club have been granted associate membership. This prevented them from using the courts at peak times and banned them from buying a drink at the bar or playing billiards.

Since 1991 there have been three attempts to change the male only rule, but they failed to reach the two-thirds majority required to allow women full membership rights.

The decisions resulted in much adverse publicity for the club.

At an extraordinary general meeting the change was finally carried by three to one. The vote in favour was 450 against 158.

Women will be able to apply for full membership of Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club when the next membership season opens in January 1997.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 10 December 1996. The reporter is Anne Marie Smyth.