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Boxing club owner selling historic collection to 'save gym' that keeps kids off the street

Carl Gunns is selling his historic collection Credit: BPM Media

A boxing club owner from Leicester is aiming to raise over £6,000 by selling his historic collection to "save the gym" that has helped keep kids off the streets.

Carl Gunns opened his gym in Birstall in 2002 and since then has helped with community schemes for young people to keep them off the street.

The gym has helped get young people who suffer from disabilities or with a lack of confidence keep active and be social through the sport.

Now, the 73-year-old is selling some of the collection he has owned since he was a child himself to keep the gym open.

He said: "There's some really great stuff, I want someone to take the stuff that really cares."

Carl Gunns is selling his historic collection. Credit: BPM Media

Carl Gunns said: "I've decided to start selling my collection that I've been collecting since I was 10"

"I'm not getting any younger, I just don't know how long I will go on for, you just don't know.

"If I can make enough to keep the gym going for another five years that would be great, the kids mean a lot and so does my gym.

"The gym keeps the kids off the street so we need to keep it going,"

Carl Gunns with Nancy Jones Credit: BPM Media

The owner has stressed the importance of the gym because "it's open to everyone" even 3-year-old Nancy Jones.

"Nancy's great! She comes in an she does the pads and everything," said Carl.

"She can spar she does shadow boxing to the Rocky soundtrack, she's really good.

"She's got to be the youngest boxing gym member in the world," he claimed.

Carl Gunns is selling his historic collection. Credit: BPM Media
Carl Gunns is selling his historic collection. Credit: BPM Media
Carl Gunns is selling his historic collection. Credit: BPM Media

One of the items for sale is an original print of the 1789 pugilistic club from an era when bare knuckle boxing was prevalent.

"It is probably the rarest print I've ever had in boxing and I paid an awful lot of money 40 years ago for this and it is a very very rare item," added Carl.

Amongst the items being sold are literatures listing some historic moments and facts in relation to Granby Halls - a venue that was demolished in 2001 but saw some historic boxing matches.

The venue even saw Leicester's own Chris Pyatt become world champion after he beat Sumbu Kalambay on points.

All the money made will go towards the cost of keeping the gym running for the kids and local community that use it.