King Edmund Acrogymnastics Club begins move into Yate Leisure Centre following eviction of bowls club

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Gazette Series: Photograph of the Author by , reporter covering Yate, Chipping Sodbury, Winterbourne, Frampton Cotterell, Rangeworthy, Wickwar, Hawkesbury, Iron Acton, Coalpit Heath and Old Sodbury

A GYMNASTICS club which is moving into Yate Leisure Centre has started holding sessions in its new facility.

King Edmund Acrogymnastics Club has started training members in one of the centre’s hall which will become the club’s new home this spring.

Three to four sessions are being held at the centre and the club hopes to stage its first competition in the venue next week, on Sunday, February 17.

Director Mark Thorne said: "We are in there and functioning and have been since September.

"It is relieving pressure on our current home, the Sports Shed on Armstrong Way, and there is much more floor space."

However, Mr Thorne said the club was only renting the space and was still waiting for a permament lease to be finalised before it could fully move in.

The club was given the go ahead to move into the leisure centre after the Circadian Trust, a not for profit organisation which runs all South Gloucestershire leisure centres, evicted Yate Indoor Bowls Club last summer.

More than 300 bowlers refused to travel to improved facilities in Thornbury on the grounds many of them are elderly and do not drive. The club was forced to cancel its winter fixtures and is continuing its search for a new home elsewhere in Yate.

Chairman Peter Webb said he was angry that the hall had not been fully utilised all winter and money the bowls club would have paid the Circadian Trust had been lost.

He said: "The really galling thing is we could have been using that hall this winter.

"We were paying £30,000 a year to the Circadian Trust so how much revenue has been lost?"

Mr Thorne said the situation was not ideal but the gym club had started moving in and the space was being used. South Gloucestershire Council is now responsible for finalising the gym club’s lease.

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