Boxing coach ‘astonished’ after receiving local hero award

Terry Degnan has run Washington Boxing Club for 29 years.
Terry Degnan has run Washington Boxing Club for 29 years.
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A boxing coach from Washington has told of his “astonishment” after having his work recognised with a local hero award.

Terry Degnan, who is the president and head coach of Washington Boxing Club, in the Avenue in Washington Village, has run the club for 29 years.

I was astonished to find out I’d won the award

Terry Degnan, Washington Boxing Club head coach

He had his dedication rewarded when Market Village, which is based in the Galleries Shopping Centre, in Washington, named him as the winner of their local hero award for his work in the community.

Terry received a plaque, as well as a pair of boxing gloves signed by professional boxing brothers Jon-Lewis and Travis Dickinson.

He said: “I was astonished to find out I’d won the award.

“Sometimes you think that you do a lot of work and nobody really notices, but they obviously do, and it’s great when that work is recognised like this. To be recognised by your own people makes it extra special.”

People of all ages, ranging from five-year-olds to adults, regularly attend the gym, with sessions often attended by about 50 people.

Terry puts on three sessions per week, along with three other coaches, but his main motivation is involving the community and giving youngsters something to do.

He added: “I love what I do with the boxing gym, but that is a bonus for me. I run it for the community.

“It’s getting kids off the streets, because there’s absolutely nothing for them to do. I teach them to box, and it’s unbelievable how popular the club is now.

“The three other coaches help a lot, as does Bob Singh, who has provided a lot of equipment. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the last 29 years, and here’s to the next 29!”