SQUASH players fear they could be caught short by plans to scrap some of the courts at Essex University.

Mark White is not a student, but is one of more than 100 public members who use the five courts at the university’s sports arena.

But he fears the number of dedicated squash courts will be reduced to two after he heard of plans to review the facility.

“I sent an email to John Bercow, chancellor of the university, copying in the vice chancellor and registrar, asking for a response,” he said.

“I heard the estates department received a plan to combine three of the five courts by knocking down the dividing walls.”

A university spokesperson said a review of the courts is at an early stage and no firm decision has been made.

Mr White said: “The sports centre has in excess of 150 public members, principally playing squash and racquetball, with around ten squash leagues and thee racquetball leagues.

“The university claims to be ‘proud to play a part in the cultural and economic life of the community surrounding our Colchester Campus.’

“I think that the current public squash and racquetball community is a very good example of this in action.

“However if 60 per cent of the courts are taken away it will become impossible for this level of participation to continue.

“As well as playing competitively and for fitness we also take part in charity events to raise money for a brain cancer charity.

“These events would of course have to end or be severely curtailed if the closure goes ahead.”

Mr White said students have six active teams representing the university in varsity matches.

“The team and general practice sessions currently take place in four courts for several hours every week and would be, at best, limited by this action,” he added.

A university spokesman said: "We’re reviewing our space requirements across our Colchester Campus to meet the changing needs of our students.

“This includes reviewing the future use of some of the squash court spaces.

“A number of proposals are under consideration, but no decisions have been taken and discussions are continuing.”