Arthur's Gym, a former derelict bingo hall, has been a popular
haunt for local teenagers who are keen to refine their skills in
the boxing ring, with the gym often packed straight after
Not only popular with teenage boys, the gym has seen an increase
in female membership with Arthur's picking up two new female boxers
since the 2012 Olympics came to a triumphant close.
With a £10,000 investment from Sport Wales to help transform and
equip the neglected building into a space where members can thrive,
Arthur's gym has become an important and integral part of the
Jamie said: "We have had an amazing impact on the local area -
youths that would normally be hanging around the shops are now in
our gym putting their efforts in to changing their lives for the
"Since we opened in April 2012 we have seen some fantastic
results, especially from our female members. One of our lady boxers
Carla Dwyer has just won the Welsh Novice Championships, which will
no doubt inspire even more women and girls to join the amateur
However it's not just boxing that is proving to be a hit with
the locals, Arthur's Gym also have a range of other facilities'
including healthy living sessions, diet and nutritional advice,
strength and conditioning classes as well as Latin inspired Zumba
fitness classes and a beauty salon.
Jamie added: "I don't think there are many clubs that have had
such a positive impact in such a short period of time. We have
produced competition winners, decreased anti-social behaviour and
employed members of the local community while also contributing
towards making sport in Wales accessible to all."
Some of the key priorities in the sector-wide Vision for Sport
in Wales, devised by Sport Wales and industry partners, are to
create communities with sport at the heart of them; retaining young
people's participation and growing club membership - a vision that
Jamie Arthur fully subscribes to.
Sport Wales Manager, Tom Overton believes Arthur's Gym is
helping to showcase these priorities while also playing an
important role in the Rhydyfelin community.
Said Tom: "We're committed to getting every child hooked on
sport in Wales and to creating a nation of champions. Arthur's Gym
is a crucial part of bringing this vision in to reality.
"Although this gym is a relatively new addition to the
community, Arthur's has already inspired hundreds of young people
to try a sport they may have not tried before. It is a great
example of how a gym can be at the heart of the community and
engage with all parts of society - especially women and girls who
traditionally may not be interested in sports such as boxing."
For anyone who is interested in becoming a member of Arthur's
Gym, please visit www.arthursgym.co.uk for