Search

Hornchurch and Elm Park Boxing Club’s Tony Martin still going strong

PUBLISHED: 13:37 13 March 2014 | UPDATED: 13:38 13 March 2014

Patrick Gahagan won the Doug Riden Lifetime Achievement prize at the Havering Sports Council Awards night, ahead of Georgio Bugnatelli and Tony Martin (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS)

Patrick Gahagan won the Doug Riden Lifetime Achievement prize at the Havering Sports Council Awards night, ahead of Georgio Bugnatelli and Tony Martin (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS)

Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League images are subject to DataCo Licencing restrictions

Tony Martin is proud of what he has achieved at Hornchurch and Elm Park Boxing club.

Tony Martin with his award Tony Martin with his award

The 74-year-old was nominated for the Doug Riden Lifetime Achievement Award at last month’s Havering Sports Council Awards after 35 years at the club.

Although he didn’t win, the septugenarian says it was an “honour just to be nominated.”

“It came as a surprise to be put forward,” Tony explained.

“I think the boxing club’s committee put me forward because I’ve been at the club for so many years.

“It’s more a reflection of the club than me, which is going really well at the moment.”

A couple of years ago a quadruple heart bypass surgery forced Tony out of coaching.

Now he concentrates on the day-to-day running and administration side of the club.

He admits it was difficult to give up coaching, something that had consumed more than three decades of his life.

“It was a difficult transition not to coach any more,” said Tony.

“A friend who coached at the club, Martin Ducklow, suggested I give it a go and I haven’t looked back.

“I miss getting into the ring and putting the gloves and pads on. But I still love being involved with the club.

“It’s going from strength to strength and has changed a lot in the last 35 years.

“It has seen a number of recent improvements to the showers, toilets and central heating and we get funding from a number of different charities, most notably the Jack Petchey Foundation, which really helps us out.”

For now, Tony is focusing on the future.

Despite being almost full to capacity, he says the club’s biggest problem is retaining boxers after they rise through the junior ranks.

The Cranham resident said: “We always seem to produce good juniors but we’re focusing on the transition to seniors.

“A lot of people move away to work or study and that means we’re not as strong in the seniors as we could be.

“Boxing training is really hard. You can’t just wing it and we won’t throw any of our fighters into the ring if they’re not ready.

“They need to be fighting fit.”

Tony, a retired Fleet Street printer, still spends one or two nights a week at the club.

They train on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.

And two nights a week they put on “ankle biters” club for 10-year-olds too young to fight competitively.

He said: “It’s a great way to get kids involved early.

“There are skills fights, no one wins or loses and there are referees to ensure no one gets hurt.

“It’s a great success and a lot of talented youngsters have come through that way.”

Hornchurch and Elm Park are putting on a boxing show at Chafford Sports Centre in Rainham on Saturday, March 29. It starts at 2pm and costs £10 for adults and £5 for pensioners and under-16s.

0 comments

Latest Romford Sports News

Reece Burke grabs extra-time winner for Hammers to make fourth round

O’Sullivan progresses to quarter-finals

Yesterday, 12:00

Urchins racked up fourth straight win in league, but came under late pressure from Boro

Yesterday, 10:00

Daggers off to Portman Road for fourth round tie

Yesterday, 08:15

He may not like it but Judd Trump has something in common with the American president who shares his surname – both know how to survive a crisis.

Bostik North: Haringey Borough 1 (Yiga 90) Hornchurch 2 (Fairweather-Johnson 10, McKenzie 87)

Mon, 17:30

Romford boss Paul Martin is delighted with his side’s victory against promotion hopefuls Maldon & Tiptree and admits no-one expected that result.

Mon, 17:00

Everton boss reflects on 4-0 thrashing away to Tottenham Hotspur and concedes he should have been more boring

PROMOTED CONTENT

Window and conservatory specialist Ken Rhodes talks about the possibilities for brightening up your home for the new year, and with their home improvement finance deals it’s possible for everyone to make some changes

Lisa and Jennie are cousins who grew up in the borough. Their grandmother, ‘Nanny Fish’ was a huge part of their lives, and while she had dementia and increasing needs, she really benefited from having care in her nephew’s loving home. This experience was the inspiration for Lisa and Jennie to set-up their own home care service.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read sport

Show Job Lists

News from your area

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now