Amy’s thoughts... Holmes Chapel Boxing Club
Holmes Chapel boxing club is passionately run by volunteer coaches who believe in supporting the youth in the community. There have been several past incidents where teenagers have been a cause for concern in the village, from anti social behaviour to starting their own ‘fight clubs’. Holmes Chapel boxing club was started in response to the school reaching out to the community for a solution to these problems.
Upon my visit to have a chat with head coach Kevin Brownlow I was really impressed by the space. Located in Cranage trade park I hadn’t imagined how professional the gym would be. It was heart warming to learn that everything had been fundraised and donated by local businesses and residents of Holmes Chapel. It is exciting to know what can be achieved when the community pulls together. I am a complete boxing novice however after hearing Kevin speak with such passion and enthusiasm it made me wish that I could join.
The boxing club teaches a no nonsense approach, no messing around is tolerated. When coaching something as disciplined as boxing the students are expected to listen and follow the rules. The gym rules on the wall states ‘Sparring is not to knock lumps out of each other’ this sums up what the club is all about. The community and school have already commented on the decline in antisocial behaviour. Boxing teaches discipline and respect in an environment that the members enjoy and appreciate. The students are required to learn all the skills and techniques before even stepping foot in the ring.
The classes are broken up by age group and ability, there is a girls class ages 13 – 18 however girls are welcome to join other mixed classes. It was amazing to hear that all of the classes have a waiting list, this demonstrates how essential the club has become to Holmes Chapel.
The club has recently achieved its charity status. This allows them to not be owned by any individuals but by the community. With a lot of hard work from the trustees and coaches its charity status will enable the club to offer more services to a wider range of people. They are hoping to expand to a broader programme of activities; boxing has been proven to help medical conditions such as Parkinson’s and dementia.
With the lockdown the club had to close temporarily however it is back up and running again with reduced class sizes. All of the Covid safety measures are in place, from marked out floors, hand sanitisers and thorough deep cleaning of equipment.
From a great idea and a need for a solution Holmes Chapel Boxing club has been built, developed and grown by the community for the community. I wish them all the luck for the future and cannot wait to see what they will achieve.