A LONG-SERVING Lyndon boxing club could be forced to close its doors after discovering it is being evicted from its premises of 51 years.
Solihull Community Boxing Club has been served verbal confirmation from Solihull council that it needs to vacate its facilities by July 31 – although it awaits an official written eviction notice.
It has appealed to Solihull council for vital assistance in finding alternative accommodation and financial support to make the move.
Club leaders were surprised to learn through a social media post they are being expelled from their site within the Summerfield Education Centre on Brackleys Way, Lyndon.
The centre is also moving its operations to Jensen House in Smith’s Wood.
The club, which is run entirely on a voluntary basis, fears it will be unable to finance a move to a new site.
The club has been part of the Lyndon community since 1967 and has around 50 members at any one time.
Head coach Paul Archer said: “It will be such a shame to see the club evicted from the community it has served for over half a century. There is precious little else in this area for young people so depriving them of their club will be a real blow to them.
“This is one of the borough’s most deprived areas and we welcome people from all backgrounds.
“Over the years, hundreds of young people have passed through our doors including many who have used boxing as a means of overcoming other difficulties in their lives.
“The club promotes discipline, fairness, respect and friendship.
“Not only do all gain satisfaction from their participation in the sport but others have gone on to compete for top honours.
“We are disappointed we only became aware of the clubs closure as a result of comments made about it on social media.”
The club says it has helped young asylum seekers in temporary housing in the area and members of the travelling community establish friendships through their involvement with the club and find a constructive way to use their time.
As a result of the councils decision to evict the club Sport England have now placed a hold on further spending of funds allocated to the club for the purchase of equipment.
The club was originally called the Hobs Moat Amateur Boxing Club.
The club is run by dedicated volunteers and head coach Paul Archer is also qualified as a judge and referee.
Mr Archer has been the head coach for the last 18 years and like others within the coaching team previously boxed for the club, joining it as a young man in 1979.
The club says it wants to work with Solihull council but the council is yet to identify an appropriate official to advise the club.
It recognises the school is moving but it says it will be difficult for the club to finance alternate accommodation in the private sector.
The Observer has contacted the council to comment on the situation.