Axminster gym club celebrates £10k crowdfund success as councils offer more free cash for East Devon projects

New gym equipment for children in Axminster will be bought with crowdfunding cash contributed by the council.

More than £80,000 is available to East Devon’s not-for-profit organisations, voluntary and local groups through the district council, in addition to community funding from the county council and police.

East Devon District Council (EDDC) is inviting not-for-profit groups along to a free introduction to crowdfunding event on Thursday, March 5, at Exmouth Town Hall, from 4.30pm until 6pm. Places must be booked in advance.

Axminster Gymnastics Club successfully raised more than £10,000 through a crowdfunding campaign, with contributions made by the district and county councils.

The district council pledged £4,000 and £2,000 was awarded from the county council.

Emma Rowe, head coach of Axminster Gymnastics Club, said the group was ‘so grateful’ for the support shown by the community, district and county councils.

She said: “We are delighted to have surpassed our target and are excited to begin sessions with our new equipment.

“Thank you to everyone who has pledged their support.”

Councillor Ian Thomas, EDDC portfolio holder for finance, said: “We’re really pleased to be able to pledge £4,000 to this great project which supports our health and wellbeing aims.

“It’ll encourage children and young people in particular to be active, and the chance to improve their skills and ambitions.”

Councillor Roger Croad, Devon County Council (DCC) cabinet member with responsibility for communities, said: “The club clearly has a big impact on the lives of children and young people in the community and we hope that the new equipment will help encourage more young people to get involved and learn new skills.”

Councillor Andrew Moulding, EDDC ward member for Axminster Town, said the crowdfund campaign was a ‘fantastic outcome’ for Axminster Gymnastics Club.

He said: “I’m sure that the crowdfunding award will enable Axminster Gymnastics Club to improve their facilities for its growing number of young participants and enable the club to go from strength to strength.”

EDDC Councillor Ian Hall, also for Axminster Town, said: “Axminster is truly punching above its weight when it comes to sport and leisure activities in the community.

“There is something for everyone in Axminster from cradle through to old age.”

He added: “I have been very impressed with the efforts before and during the funding efforts made by the very popular Axminster Gymnastics Club, who have over two hundred young people using the facilities on a weekly basis.”

More than £80,000 of crowdfunding is available in East Devon through the district council, added to community money from Devon County Council and Devon and Cornwall Police, as part of the Crowdfund Devon partnership.

Axminster Gymnastics Club project raised more than £10,000 for new equipment, including a sprung floor, beam, professional matting, and a movable foam pit area.

Through crowdfunding, the club raised £10,420 in 56 days thanks to 40 supporters.

The money included £6,000 from Crowdfund Devon – £4,000 from East Devon District Council’s Crowdfund East Devon fund and £2,000 from Devon County Council’s Community Chest.

An EDDC spokeswoman said: “Axminster Gymnastics Club is a not-for-profit club, which aims to provide access to the sport for as many children and young people as possible by keeping prices down.

“This means they do not have any spare money for purchasing new and replacement equipment.”

To book your place on the crowdfunding session in Exmouth, email crowdfund@eastdevon.gov.uk

See more about the Crowdfund Devon partnership here.

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