VOLUNTEERS at a Redditch boxing club welcomed two top British athletes as part of a new campaign to promote the sport.
Double Commonwealth gold medallist David Moorcroft and wheelchair racer Ben Rowlings visited Redditch Amateur Boxing Club on Monday as part of the Backing Up Boxing drive.
The scheme, organised by Join In and England Boxing, aims to shine a light on volunteers and the huge impact they have on the sport.
As part of the day the pair took part in training, spoke to boxers, and thanked volunteer coaches who work at the Matchborough Centre site.
Mr Moorcroft said the club was ‘cracking’, offering opportunities for both able and disabled people.
“It is at the heart of the community and clubs like this are vital in encouraging sport, everyone looked like they were having a ball.
“All clubs like this, across the country, are run by volunteers and without their support it would be critical for sport as a whole.
“Today was sport at its best and volunteering at its best.” he said.
Mr Rowlings, who is a European bronze medallist, said he enjoyed getting stuck in while giving something back to the volunteers who dedicate their time to boxing.
“I really related to the club as I started getting involved with sport through a community sport group.
“Boxing was one of those sports that I never thought would be very inclusive because it is a contact sport, but it has set the bench marks for all sports.
“This is what sports should be about and the work that is done here is truly inspirational.”
Matt Rogers, a volunteer coach, added the club catered for all needs.
“The work we do here is always inclusive – boxing is for everyone, just like all sports should be.” he said.
“It was really nice to meet both Ben and Dave and get them involved, it was inspiring for everyone here and we got to show them the work we do.”
Disability boxing sessions run from 2pm until 3pm every Monday.