The Championships, Wimbledon, The Wimbledon Championships or simply Wimbledon is the oldest tennis tournament in the world, and widely considered the most prestigious. It has been held at the All England Club in Wimbledon, London, since 1877. It is one of the four Grand Slam tennis tournaments (Majors), the others being the Australian Open, French Open (Roland Garros) and US Open. Wimbledon is the only Major still played on grass, the game's original surface, which gave the game its original name of "lawn tennis".
The tournament takes place over two weeks in late June and early July, culminating with the Ladies' and Gentlemen's Singles Final, scheduled for the second Saturday and Sunday respectively. Each year five major events are contested, as well as four junior events and three invitational events.
The hard court (Plexicushion) Australian Open and clay court French Open precede Wimbledon in the year, and the hard court (DecoTurf) US Open follows. For men, the grass court Queen's Club Championships, also in London, and the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany, serve as warm-up events; for women, the Aegon Classic in Birmingham and two joint events, the Topshelf Open in 's-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands and the Eastbourne International.
Wimbledon traditions include a strict dress code for competitors, the eating of strawberries and cream by the spectators, and Royal patronage. The tournament is also notable for the absence of sponsor advertising around the courts. In 2009, Wimbledon's Centre Court was fitted with a retractable roof to lessen the loss of playing time due to rain.