A WOMBWELL boxing gym owner rounded the year off with an award win.

Charlie Green, who runs Retro Fitness in Wombwell, won the North of England Martial Arts Coach of the Year title and is excitedly planning a trip to Manchester to be presented with his award at organiser Prestige Awards’ ceremony.

“This isn’t just about me, the win is for the team around me too, and my partner,” he said.

“When we have all the details about the ceremony I’m hoping to get a minibus load of us there for the event.”

Last year had already been a good one for Charlie and his gym – which is based in the basement at Wombwell Working Men’s Club – as he published his autobiography, Don’t Stop Believing.

They’re going from strength to strength with over 70 youngsters attending every week.

Aged from as young as four, they take part in boxing, self-defence and kickboxing classes and Charlie is proud of the ‘family’ he has created.

“It’s not just about learning to look after yourself, it’s about how you conduct yourself,” he added.

“We instil discipline and good manners – these youngsters will wait around for ten minutes sometimes after the classes are finished just to thank me and say see you next week.

“It’s a very special place – the youngsters are so polite.

“I always say there are two things we don’t have here – no egos and no drugs.”