Karate kids are top of the chops

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A RECENTLY formed karate club is on a high after receiving a grant and excelling at one of its first competitions.

The Headland Shotokan Karate Club was only set up in September last year and started out with just three members and no equipment.

But 11 months on, the club proudly boasts 30 members and was able to splash out thousands of pounds on equipment after receiving a Big Lottery Fund grant.

Before the club received the £4,000 in January this year it didn’t have any mats and a small amount of safety equipment, which limited what members could do in training sessions.

But now the children and adult members who meet three times a week at St Oswald’s Church Hall, in Milbank Road, Hartlepool, are looking up.

Club secretary Susan Skinner said: “Things are going very well.

“When we started out we had no equipment at all and a couple of members, now we have a whole range of members ranging from a five-year old through to pensioners.”

The Headland Shotokan team was formed after the collapse of a previous club, based on the Headland.

Instructors John Walker and Malcolm Crowther didn’t want to see talent go to waste so helped launch the new club on the Headland, before it moved to St Oswald’s Church Hall soon after.

Susan added: “We had nothing at all when we started out but managed to win 15 trophies at our first competition in Thornaby. It was fantastic.”