A kind hearted businessman has given a heavyweight donation of £3,000 to help a Newcastle boxing club train the champions of the future.
Rob Armstrong, director of leading recruitment agency; MTrec Recruitment and Newcastle’s fastest growing taxi firm, LA Taxis, paid a visit to Cruddas Park Boxing Club to meet members of the club who train up to four times a week in the gym and boxing ring. He was joined by friend of Mr Armstrong and former World Cruiserweight Champion and TV commentator, Glenn McCrory who like Rob, has a passion for grassroots boxing.
The club which was formed in 2004 and affiliated to the Amateur Boxing Association three years ago has grown from strength to strength. It now has around 60 members ranging from a seven year old to those in their mid-thirties who want to compete at an amateur level or simply use the facilities to keep fit and healthy.
One of two, head coaches, Robin Brady has been boxing all of his life and dedicates a lot of his time to training his members. He was delighted with the £3,000 donation which will go towards new tracksuits, gloves, affiliation fees and medicals.
“This will make a massive difference to what we do here,” he said. “We are working in a deprived area of the community and it’s not just boxing that we teach here. We teach the children respect and the importance for them to be responsible members of the community. Giving them something worthwhile to do keeps them off the streets and lowers antisocial behaviour. We are all very grateful to Mr Armstrong, MTrec and LA Taxis for this very kind donation.”
Fellow head coach, Shaun Kernon explained how difficult it had been setting up the club,” We’ve worked really hard to get where we are today but it has been a struggle. Mr Armstrong’s help and support is a godsend to us all.”
Glenn said, “The facilities here are great for the kids. When I was training as a youngster we had to keep moving equipment in and out of cupboards whereas here, everything is at hand and ready to use whenever the kids need it. It’s also great to see local businesses putting something back into the community that they grew up in too.”
Rob said, “I was brought up around this area and it’s good to come back and help the youngsters to do something that is encouraging them to have self-respect, discipline and at the same time keeping them fit and healthy. I’m looking forward to following the progress of the boxers here in future competitions.”
There was an additional surprise to the day as one of the club’s youngest members, Amy Johnson, (7) from Cruddas Park sparred up to world champion Glenn in the boxing ring. Amy’s dad, Stephen, a member himself, was amazed at Mr Armstrong’s generous donation and the fact that a world champion boxer had taken the time to visit the club.
“This has been a fantastic experience for the kids, the trainers and the club itself, the kids will remember this day for a long time to come,” he said.
Photo 1 shows: Glenn takes a punch from seven year old Amy Johnson while Rob Armstrong looks on