Frank Bruno hoping new Northampton gym will deal knockout blow to mental health struggles

Boxing legend Frank Bruno is taking on his toughest opponent yet, as he tries to tackle mental health issues among young people.

The former world heavyweight champion, who fought both Mike Tyson and Lennox Lewis in his stellar career, has just transformed a Northampton community centre into a venue to support both mental health services and a boxing academy.

The aim of the foundation, which is run by 12 volunteers, is to help young people fight their mental demons.

Youngsters can benefit from non-contact boxing training, as well as classes in things like nutrition and well-being.

"I've had tough opponents in the ring, but you can't get any tougher opponents than life itself," Frank Bruno told ITV News Anglia.

"I've taken all the punches in the ring and I've taken all the punches outside the ring and I think I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Mental health is one of the most powerful things - once the mental one goes, the body doesn't function."

Despite only being open for a matter of weeks, the project is already helping young people turn their lives around - including 14-year-old Joe Potter.

Joe Potter, 14, says the academy has already had a positive impact on him. Credit: ITV News Anglia

"Before I was coming here I was getting in a lot of trouble," he said.

"But when I've come here it's improved my fitness and my behaviour as well."

For Frank, he's just glad to be making a difference: "If you've got something bothering you, go and see a doctor or see a specialist. My mum always told me, always get an older person to talk to, because an older person will tell you the truth. You've got to have someone you can rely upon."