Washington Boxing club aiming to raise £20,000 for new facilities as it transforms lives in and out the ring
A boxing club is on a mission to raise £20,000 for updated facilities as the newly reborn club strives to connect with the community.
Washington Boxing Club was founded in 1988 before being forced to disband.
But army veteran Alan Brown has recently revived the group, and has grand plans for the future.
Since retiring from the armed forces after 24 years of service, he has taken over as head coach, helping transform the club, seeing boxers compete in international competitions, take part in mental health workshops, and overseen the start of female, senior and junior sessions.
Speaking about the clubs revival and need of new facilities, he said: “It’s a big, big project. A new building would have a huge impact on everything we do.
“We don’t even have a heating system at the minute, it needs improving.”
Alan said the club, which has strong links to the community also offers fitness classes and aims to cater to all ages, with its current membership ranging from just five years old, all the way to 91.
He said boxing isn’t the clubs only focus as it also aims to provide an escape for anyone struggling with their home life.
Alan added: “We help provide an escape and safe space for people. We’ve had youngsters struggling with their GCSE’s or finding a job, and helped them revise and with their CV.”
Boxer James Walker, 31, who recently represented the club in Portugal and Denmark, said: “The club has given me opportunities to travel the world and meet and spar with people I would never have thought possible, like Derek Chisora, David Haye and Ricky Hatton.”
Future ambitions for the club include becoming a professional gym and also developing its female team, in what is a male dominated sport.
Member Abbie Hillan, 18, said: Its helped me in so many ways. Coaches are always there for you no matter what. I just applied for uni and they’ve helped me massively with that.”
Washington Boxing Club are currently appealing for more sponsors and crowdfunding to raise £20,000 for improved facilities.