Boxing club boosted by £20,000 facelift

County councillor Tony Rogers with youngsters beneath a Cassius Clay mural at Spire Boxing Academy

County councillor Tony Rogers with youngsters beneath a Cassius Clay mural at Spire Boxing Academy

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Members of the Spire Boxing Academy have a gym fit for a world champion after a £20,000-plus refurbishment. The Whittington-based establishment is buzzing each evening and the redevelopment has given the Academy a massive shot in the arm.

The National Lottery’s Sport England has donated just under £10,000 which provided brightly coloured safety flooring throughout, state of the art punch bags and boxing equipment.

In addition, Sport England’s investment waste management company Viridor Credits has invested £9,500 to have a fantastic male and female changing and shower areas installed.

County Councillor Tony Rogers, who respresnts Newbold, has also stepped in to help spruce the place up.

Cllr Rogers raised £1,600 from Derbyshire County Council’s community fund to give the gym the finishing touches it needed.

The academy’s dirty,run-down looking walls have disappeared after the painters have been in. Urban Canvas, which specialises in street art and regeneration graffiti murals, have paid a visit and helped to transform the interior of the acasemy. The walls have been covered with images of boxing greats including the iconic one of Muhammad Ali’s first round knock-out of Sonny Liston in 1965. Spire Academy head coach Robbie Sivyer is delighted with the transformation.

He said: “I’m absolutely over the moon with the project, our members now have a gym their hard work and dedication over the last few years deserves.

“I can honestly say its the best gym I’ve seen and I’m really proud of it. I cannot thank the people and companies that have helped us get to this position enough.

“It is now up to me and my coaches to ensure we keep young people involved in lawful sporting activities, reducing anti-social behavior while battling obesity and continuing to produce talented boxers and athletes to represent our town and county.’’

The gym looks fit for the 21st century but it has running costs of £10,000 per year, a sum of money which presents a threat to its survival.

Robbie, a former professional boxer, offers non contact group and personal training sessions to men and women throughout the day to suit all fitness requirements.

Spire Boxing Academy is always in need of business support from local companies, and offers great sponsorship deals.

Details are available from Robbie. Anyone interested can visit www.spireboxing.co.uk.