OWNERS kept their gymnastics club afloat through their life savings to allow youngsters to now jump for joy.

The Urban School of Gymnastics, based on Slutchers Lane, opened just before the first coronavirus pandemic lockdown in a café.

Two days before lockdown, they converted the former go-carting centre and moved into a third of the attached warehouse, which is a 22,000 square foot gym, to allow more youngsters to get active.

The gym was fully revamped so the entirety of the warehouse could be used after the lockdown for all its gymnast and trampolining purposes.

However, the couple who own it, Christina Louise Duckers and her partner Niall Rowe, had all funding, grants and a personal business loan declined to keep it financially stable over the lockdown periods.

“We got declined everything because we were a new business. So, we just put all our personal savings into it and we’re still up and running,” Duckers said.

“It was really hard. We only had 40 members when we went into the first lockdown. And they didn’t all keep paying, so we had to literally fund almost everything ourselves.

“We kind of put everything together, all our personal life savings into it not knowing if we were going to reopen or not so it was a massive risk.

“Luckily enough it’s paying off now, we’re on about 250 members now.”

After the initial lockdown, 28 of the club’s gymnasts, aged 3 to 15, took part in the international competition ‘Women’s Artistic’ on video communication service Zoom. They all placed in the top eight of their categories.

And their trampolinists, aged 10 to 15, competed in another Zoom competition this time national, where they could boast an overall champion and several of their trampolinists placing in the top eight.

Their efforts were rewarded with a medal ceremony.

Warrington Guardian:

Gymnasts at their medal ceremony. Picture: Christina Duckers

The club have pushed on from that initial success as they have been able to reopen again after the latest lockdown.

Duckers continued: “It’s amazing really to see them all having a bit of normality back in their life, being with friends, socialising, being happy and learning, it’s the best feeling ever.

“Seeing all the coaches back too as they were all out of a job all through lockdown."

To find out more about the club, visit their Facebook page: Urban school of Gymnastics