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BoxUp Crime launches new gym in Ilford to train future champions and provide safe space for young people

PUBLISHED: 17:00 14 October 2020

Cllr Jas Athwal (centre) and BoxUp Crime founder Stephen Addison at the launch of the new gym in Ilford. Picture: Redbridge Council

Cllr Jas Athwal (centre) and BoxUp Crime founder Stephen Addison at the launch of the new gym in Ilford. Picture: Redbridge Council

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BoxUp Crime, the group helping keep children off the streets, has opened a new gym in Ilford thanks to funding supported by Redbridge Council.

Anthony Yarde gave a motivational speech to the young people at the launch. Picture: Redbridge CouncilAnthony Yarde gave a motivational speech to the young people at the launch. Picture: Redbridge Council

The new gym in Chapel Road, which includes a professional boxing ring, in-house music studio, and a teaching classroom, was launched on October 8.

It will also serve as the new home training gym for British light-heavyweight Anthony Yarde, who was in attendance for the opening.

The gym provides free boxing sessions to those aged seven to 19, where they can learn new skills, work with mentors, and engage with professional boxers and coaches.

The council was able to support BoxUp Crime through the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL), which Redbridge Planning Service negotiates from developers to fund facilities which benefit the community.

British light-heavyweight Anthony Yarde was on hand for the launch and it will be his new training ground. Picture: Redbridge CouncilBritish light-heavyweight Anthony Yarde was on hand for the launch and it will be his new training ground. Picture: Redbridge Council

BoxUp Crime founder Stephen Addison said it was a dream come true to open up the new gym to create a safe space where young people can train alongside future world champions.

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“The gym has become a refuge for the kids on the street to find hope in creating a better future from an uncertain past.”

BoxUp Crime works with young people at risk of having their lives ruined by crime and gangs, and motivates them to rebuild and recapture their dreams and aspirations.

It also provides young people with job opportunities and apprenticeships as a stepping stone to their future.

Council leader Jas Athwal said: “I am so proud that local young people now have a dedicated boxing gym in the heart of Ilford where they can visit free of charge every Thursday afternoon and evening.

“This is a great opportunity for young people to focus their energies on developing their boxing skills, whilst in a safe space supported by mentors.

“The work Stephen and his team at BoxUp Crime are doing is nothing short of incredible, working directly with young people to show them another path – away from gangs and violence and towards fulfilling their dreams and aspirations.

“I was able to meet some of the people BoxUp Crime have helped, including a young guy called Fabian whose whole life has been turned around thanks to the BoxUp team. Fabian is now a trainer and has a bright future.”


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