Goole boxing club packs a punch in debut year

July 22, 2022

A boxing club in Goole which is celebrating its first year anniversary has proved to be a big hit with local people from the town and surrounding villages.

The Goole Amateur Boxing Club is now a year old after opening its doors in the former Barclays Bank building in the precinct, on Boothferry Road, in July 2021. The Club came about after a recent survey carried out in Goole revealed a boxing club topped the list of what young people wanted to have in the town. This resulted in range of local organisations, companies, and individuals working together form the Club, led by the Moorlands Community Charity based in Old Goole and Andrew Horncastle MBE.

Head Coach Renetta Edwards said the Club is now playing a role in bringing the community together. Renetta, who is also the medical registrar for England Boxing Limited in Yorkshire, said: “The Club has proved amazingly popular, we had a waiting list of people wanting to train here from the moment we announced it was opening. What is really great is the mix of people we get. “There’s such a range of ages, abilities, males, females, different nationalities, it’s fantastic. It is bringing everyone together, people who wouldn’t normally mix but who meet here and get fit together. “For some people it is life changing. The discipline and commitment it requires really has the power to change lives for the better.”

As well as helping people to get fitter and healthier and producing more than 50 certified boxers in under 12 months, Goole Amateur Boxing Club is reaching out to work with community groups in the town. Ex-professional boxer and a level one coach at the Club Zygimantas Butkevicius, known as Zygis, trains members in the evenings and has also been helping provide daytime support to young people from Falcons Learning - a school that caters for children excluded from mainstream education. Zygis, 29, is Lithuanian and has been living in the UK for six and a half years. He joined the Club’s training staff because he wanted to become more involved in his adopted new community. He said: “I have had 31 professional fights so I have a lot of experience and thought I could help out. I work at Tesco and changed my shift pattern so I could also come to the gym on Thursdays to work with Falcons Learning, which I really enjoy doing. “Boxing training gives the children a focus and helps get them active, which I think they really benefit from.”

Erin Dilks, 17, is a rising star who trains at Goole Amateur Boxing Club. She recently won a scholarship to go to the Joe Gallagher Academy in Manchester and has dreams of representing Team GB at the Olympic Games. She said she has been boxing as long as she can remember but was training at another gym and was gradually falling out of love with the sport. So, when Goole Amateur Boxing Club opened, she decided to move straight away. Erin, who is from Thorne, said: “When I came here everything changed. “If I’d have kept on as I was before, I would have given up. I was training myself but I fell out of love with it. “But now I have a never been so fit. I’m training every day and that is down to people like Renetta and the atmosphere at Goole. It’s a fantastic place to come.” East Yorkshire businessman Andrew Horncastle MBE played a key role in setting the Club up during his tenure as High Sheriff of East Yorkshire in 2020/2021.

Andrew said he was proud the Club had been so successful in its first year and thanked all the organisations, businesses, and individuals who had made it possible. He said: “So many people have supported the Club to get it to this point. It is wonderful to see it thrive. It has been a brilliant example of people working together to create something of real value to the local community. “I am delighted to have played a part in creating this great amenity and I would like to wish it, and everyone who supports it, a very happy first birthday. I’m sure there will be many more celebrations to come.”

The Moorlands Community Charity, located in Old Goole, helped make the Club a reality, as did the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner, Beal Homes, The Goole Fields Wind Farm Community Fund, The Rotary Club of Howden, The Tribune Trust and many more. Jacky Crawford, CEO of The Moorlands Community Charity, said: “We have seen such a marked change in the attitude of young people attending the Club and have had many parents come to us to say as much. “I would like to thank the coaching team, especially Renetta, for the many hours of dedication to ensuring the Club is inviting, safe and successful. I would also wish to thank the Management Group, who also put in many hours of volunteering and commitment. Happy birthday everyone.”

To find out more about Goole Amateur Boxing Club, visit (21-07-725 SU)

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