New club packs a punch for local kids

A new boxing club is hoping to be a knockout amongst Whitby youngsters when it holds its first sparring session in the new year.

It is in conjunction with Whitby Police and will open its doors on January 4.

It will be for two nights a week in the dance studio at Whitby Community College and will cost just £1 per session.

The venture has been made possible thanks to a grant of £3000 which has paid for initial costs such as equipment, insurance and the premises and there have been other donations of equipment.

But PCSO Lynne Butler, who has organised the club, says more funds are needed to find more appropriate premises and make sure they can keep costs down for local kids.

She said: “The funding is initially for eight weeks but I don’t want it to be for eight weeks but something we can keep for a number of years in Whitby.

“The reason this came about was because we had lots of young people on the streets that we were dealing with all the time. They said there was nothing to do. There is plenty but in their eyes there isn’t because they can’t afford it.

“Some families have four or five kids and they can’t afford to send them all to the leisure centre. I came up with the idea of boxing but they said it would never happen in Whitby.

“I want to break down barriers with kids and teach them self respect and discipline.”

One of those barriers will be with the Evangelical Church, where it is hoped the club can eventually have a permanent base where they can leave the equipment out and increase the number of sessions.

A meeting is being held between the police and the church at the beginning of next month.

She added: “A few members understandably are not so sure. People have this idea that yobs get involved in boxing. We have people in the town that want to get rid of anger and this is good way. It is a controlled environment and it is about self-respect and confidence.”