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Wirral gym to re-open following Olympic Legacy cash boost
1:31pm Tuesday 18th September 2012 in News
A WIRRAL gym will re-open its doors on Saturday following a refurbishment funded by Olympic Legacy cash.
Volunteers from Birkenhead Community Development Committee secured the £48,000 grant in April, setting to work breathing new life into Drill Gymnastics and Trampoline Club in Birkenhead, formerly known as the Grange Road West Sports Centre.
They have managed to transform the main hall with equipment building and the facilities on offer, although further structural repairs and decoration is needed.
The Olympic legacy funding from Sport England paid for long-awaited improvements including new sprung flooring for gymnastics, insulation, a new roof and a heating system. A further £10,000 grant from Sport England has secured new mats and gym equipment.
Jodie Stott, bid manager and BCDC committee member said: “Anyone and everyone is welcome at our gym, regardless of ability or experience.
"You can literally walk in off the street and come and have a go, whether you are three years old or an adult who is looking for a new challenge.
“Our club caters for all ages and levels, from beginners to British Internationals. We have some of the best instructors in the country.
"Our trampolining coaches include national competition head coaches Sue Freeman and Cathy Page MBE who received MBE for service to trampoling.
“Our trampolining club has an impressive track record. In our 35 year history we have produced several national and international champions.
“Hannah Moses from Wallasey was the National Ladies Champion in 2009 and representing team GBat a number of International Competitions. Bethan Williams, also from Wallasey, took first place in this year’s U15 National Trampolining Championships.
“We are very proud of the fact that we have produced such big successes, but our ethos is very much that we are here to serve the entire community. It’s not just about having an aspiration to improve physical wellbeing, or being a means to win competitions.
“It’s about the bigger picture too: we truly believe that communities and individuals are happier, more confident and more successful when they regularly engage with sport.
The former Territorial Army Drill Hall, which became a sports centre in 1969, was taken over by BCDC last August, more than two years after Birkenhead Trampoline Club and Birkenhead Gymnastics Club joined forces in a bid to run it.
Previously only the trampoline club had used the site the gym club was at another site which has since closed down which was then run by Wirral Borough Council. The building had faced an uncertain future after it was included in Wirral Council’s controversial Strategic Asset Review.
Named 'Drill' in a nod to its roots the building is now a home to a variety of thriving community sports groups, beyond the original gymnastics and trampolining clubs. There are classes in cheerleading, street dance, kung fu, judo, boxing and capoeira.
During Saturday’s launch, taking place from 11am and 3pm, there will be try-out sessions running in the gymnasium, as well as fun activities for children and demonstrations.