A community-run gym in Bulwell has celebrated their first anniversary since being taken under new management last year by local residents.

Mellish Sports Centre, Bulwell, has gone from “strength to strength” after receiving funding from the National Lottery to create a bigger and better gym to benefit everyone.

Starting off as a small community centre outside of Bulwell Youth Club on Brooklyn Road, the building was considered a ‘black hole’ by the council and it was going to be knocked down.

A lottery bid was made by the Sports Community Officer in Bulwell and the volunteers at the gym and when the funding was granted, a manager was needed to run the centre.

Tarquin Weaver, 41, from Selston put himself forward for the role and has been running the gym with 600-700 members and growing.

He said: “We really hit the ground running as we had five weeks at the time to move in on October 1.

“Now we have over 1000 members in the gym and you’re lucky if you can get a space at night!”

“It’s really changed my life around”

The centre also acts as a rehabilitation unit and works closely with people in a vulnerable situation to get a job by creating CV’s and appealing to Nottingham City Jobs funds.

Chanel Robertson, 26, from Caunton Avenue, started working at the community centre and as the business developed, moved to Mellish Sports Centre.

She said: “There’s a lot more opportunity over here with our staff and resources.

I normally deal with the young people who come in looking for jobs and help with the college and university applications.”

One woman who has really benefited from the sports centre’s opening is Amanda Moores, 48, from Brull Hill who believes she was at rock bottom before working at the centre.

She said: “I hit a real low point, I suffered with depression and I needed something to do.

“My friend said the gym needed a cleaner and I’ve been here for two years now.

“It’s really changed my life around.”

The sports centre is looking forward to joining the anniversary and Christmas celebrations with the team and also the community.

Tarquin said: “We’ll have a free Christmas party for everyone in Bulwell and we’ll be expecting a lot of young kids.

“They will each be given a selection box and we’ll also have a Santa’s Grotto.

“Everything will be free, it’s never been about the money for us.”