New Addington Boxing Club to open after Secret Millionaire donation
A BOXING club has been "brought back from the dead" by a cash injection from the Secret Millionaire.
The New Addington Boxing Club received a grant of £17,500 from Bobby Dudani after he paid a visit to the estate with Channel 4 film crews.
And now – just eight weeks after the programme was screened – the money has been spent and the boxing centre, in Timebridge Youth Club, Fieldway, is set to open next month.
Tim Copeman, who has been a coach at the centre for the past three years, said: "We have had all sorts done, the money has come in so handy – it has helped us to completely refurbish the inside and parts of the outside so it is looking fresh and ready to use again.
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"It looks completely different and we can't wait to show it off. There have only been a few people who have seen it and they have all been impressed. Many of them can't believe what we have done with the place.
"It is just refurbishment works. The money was great but the stuff we have done has been quite expensive and we haven't been able to get any new equipment or bags yet as the money didn't stretch that far, but that is what we will be saving up for next."
The centre has had a complete overhaul, with new carpets, paintwork, toilets and even an extension to house new ladies' and men's changing rooms. It has also had all of its mould-plagued exterior woodwork replaced.
Tim added: "it looks so different and we are hoping to really pull new people in now.
"We have three nights of training on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, but who knows what could happen in the future."
Fellow coach Billy Graham, who has been part of the club from the age of seven and coached at the centre for the last ten years said: "This is the biggest thing to ever happen to the club.
"We have always been around Addington. We have had four or five bases but now we can come back from the dead.
"The centre needed work. It was like a dinosaur so we have finally been able to bring it into the 21st century. It is great.
"It is very exciting. With the money we have been given we have been able to get facilities so we can now cater for females for the first time ever.
"We want to make it a unisex gym and I am hoping we can really pull in new people once we officially open."
The club is trying to organise an open day for the centre on Saturday, September 1 before its official opening on September 3.