Future of boxing club in jeopardy
Rathnew Boxing Club in need of a bigger premises
Rathnew Boxing Club's future is in severe jeopardy if it doesn't urgently find a new home.
The club has been located down at the South Quay in Wicklow town for the past three years but an increase in rent and the size of the premises means the club will have to move elsewhere for a suitable home.
James Kearney currently runs Rathnew Boxing Club along with John O'Goucher and he is fearful that the club will have to disband if a new home isn't found.
'It would be heartbreaking if the club had to close. We have put way too much work into the club to let that happen,' said James.
The size of their current venue is no longer suitable to the club's growing membership and the addition of an increased rate of rent has left the club with little choice but to look elsewhere.
'The future of the club is at risk and we desperately need to find a new place. Our current location is too small and not really fit for purpose. We had to stop taking new people because the premises isn't big enough for a growing club like ours. We are having to put people's names on a waiting list until there is a vacancy.
'It absolutely kills us that we have to turn people away and a large venue would really help us out,' said James.
The club has over 60 members, ranging in age from seven up to 45.
Just recently, Sam Carroll became the club's first Senior Leinster Champion and he will be making his professional debut later this month.
'A professional needs a bigger ring and better facilities,' said James.
Another club member, Adam Sinnot, is boxing for the Leinster Development Squad as last year's beaten Leinster finalist. He also won a European Silver Medal in Lithuania last November and is the current Wexford League champion.
Callum Clarke is the current Monkstown Box Cup champion and also last year's beaten Leinster finalist and also reached this year's Michael Andrew Tournament final. Killian Clarke was Leinster champion two years ago and is also the Wexford Leagues champion. Michael Cash was beaten in last year's Leinster Semi Final. Alex Dickinson boxed in this year's Esker Cup.
Cllr Mary Kavanagh has been assisting the club to try and find a new premises in either Wicklow town or Rathnew.
'We have been out looking at different empty buildings but we haven't had any luck so far. Wicklow town, Rathnew or anywhere in between would be great,' said James.
'We have a lot of kids boxing with us and it would be terrible for all members if the club was forced to quit. When you are young your mind can tend to wander so boxing provides real discipline. It also gives them a real focus and is great at building character.'
If anyone is aware of any premises which would be suitable for Rathnew Boxing Club they can contact James on (085) 7157160.