Westy Boxing Club has won a national award for helping to dramatically reduce anti-social behaviour (ASB) in Latchford and the surrounding areas.
The Warrington club fought off strong competition from community sports projects across the country to be crowned the winner in the Outstanding Work in Community Safety category at the StreetGames Awards.
The awards – which were held at Warwick University on Wednesday 5 April – recognise projects which have had a significant impact on improving the lives of disadvantaged young people.
The club was set up in October 2015 to provide a base for young people to exercise, learn new skills and socialise, following a spate of fire related anti-social behaviour incidents in the area.
Since its introduction into the community, both the fire and police service have reported a dramatic reduction in the number of ASB call outs in the area.
The club’s adopted motto is ‘respect and discipline’ and sessions are used to instil the importance of these values not only in boxing, but in everyday life.
It continues to be run every Wednesday by LiveWire, Warrington Wolves Foundation, and local PCSOs, in association with England Boxing and Phoenix Boxing Club.
Paul Flannery, neighbourhood engagement officer at LiveWire, said: “It’s an honour to be recognised as one of the best projects in the country for reducing anti-social behaviour and improving community cohesion.
“In just 18 months, the project has made a real difference to the lives of young people in Westy and Latchford.
“It’s also provided them with some fantastic opportunities, including the chance to train with Olympic and Commonwealth boxer, Courtney Fry.”
Following the success of Westy Boxing Club, other clubs have been set up around the town. Chapelford Boxing Club launched back in February and runs every Friday night at Chapelford Village Primary School.