Black belts for top Brussels students

Members of the Hartlepool and Billingham Kazoku Ryu Aikido Club celebrate their successful annual seminar in Belgium
Members of the Hartlepool and Billingham Kazoku Ryu Aikido Club celebrate their successful annual seminar in Belgium

A MARTIAL arts group has returned from a successful seminar in Europe during which four members earned their black belts.

Aikido instructor Tony Hudspith, from Seaton Carew, led the enthusiastic bunch of students on the club’s annual trip to Brussels.

The trip was a great success with several members of Hartlepool and Billingham’s Kazoku Ryu Aikido Club achieving the highest level possible.

Tony, a 3rd dan, said: “We had a fab time last weekend in Brussels with over 70 people attending the three day course.

“It was extra special as four of Kazoku Ryu’s brown belts came back as black belts.

“They put in a fast and furious grading which the people who were watching were amazed by.”

The club has been making the trip to Europe for several years now and has grown year on year.

The seminar provides a great opportunity for students to build on their martial arts skills and develop new friendships.

It initially began with just Tony, 40, making the journey overseas.

He added: “This time there was 12 of us travelling, including our club mascot Yoshi Bear, but are hoping that more will join us next year as the travelling group grows.”

The Kazoku Ryu Aikido Club meets at Northfield School in Billingham on a Friday from 7.30pm-9pm.

Classes are also held at Stranton Primary School, Hartlepool, on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

For more information about the club contact Tony Hudspith on 07970 413437 or see their page on Facebook.