Recent research into youth provision in Goole town had identified the need for a boxing club. A former club had had to close some years ago due to the premises falling into disrepair and then being demolished.

In early 2020, the then High Sheriff, Andrew Horncastle MBE, met with the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Community Engagement Officer for the East Riding, Deborah Fagan.

Andrew was also Chair of the St Paul’s Boxing Academy in Hull. Deborah highlighted the need for a boxing club in Goole and offered to make an introduction to Jacky Crawford, Chief Executive Officer at The Moorlands Community Charity based in Goole and that is how it all began.

It was envisaged that the presence of a club would help reduce levels of anti-social behaviour in the town and provide young people with the opportunity to develop themselves for life ahead.

At first, the founding team wanted to prove demand for the facility and the Trustees at Moorlands agreed that the new club could operate under their charitable wing.Later, if successful, then a new charity would be formed to operate the club.

Premises were identified in the former Barclays Bank on Boothferry Road in the town centre precinct. Work began by raising funds, agreeing a lease, undertaking necessary alteration and fitting out works on the building, assembling a management team and recruiting a team of volunteer coaches.

This initiative was led by Andrew, a small team from the Moorlands Community Charity and supported by Mike Bromby MBE, Head Coach at St Paul’s Boxing Academy, who was always on hand with advice and support together with the team at England Boxing. Mike helped greatly with the recruitment of the coaching team, identifying equipment and providing guidance.His contribution was invaluable.

Humberside Police also gave time and support at every stage, as did the Rotary Club of Howden.The Smile Foundation provided help on governance and set up, together with wise council from Dave Bertholini at local charity Cat Zero.

Goole Amateur Boxing Club opened on 1st July 2021 and thereafter the local response has been phenomenal. The club is inclusive and open to all. As Head Coach, Renetta Edwards quotes “we are not men and women, boys and girls – we are boxers, who love the sport of boxing.”

In Autumn 2022, with the club in its second successful year, the Management Board, in agreement with the Trustees of The Moorlands Community Charity, agreed the time was right to establish its independence and moved to set up the Goole Amateur Boxing Club Charitable Incorporated Organisation and from 1st April 2023, this new Charity operates the club.Enormous thanks go to Moorlands for their support in helping the club to reach that stage.

Since opening, membership has grown to 229 boxers:

  • Ages 8 to 13 = 81
  • Ages 14 to 17 = 56
  • Over 18s = 92 including a number of members over the age of 60

Within these numbers, 57 members are already licenced with England Boxing or recreational and competitive boxers.

Weekday nights are always busy with great commitment from both boxers and the volunteer coaching team headed by Renetta Edwards.

A number of boxers have already represented the club in England Boxing competitions.

The plans are to develop and grow the club over the next few years to become the Centre of Excellence for amateur boxing in the sub-region, helping young people grow their confidence and develop positive aspects to their character to allow them to reach out to achieve their dreams in life to come.