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Fort offers "sticking plaster" solution for Special Gymnastics Club

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Wednesday 01 February 2023

Fort offers "sticking plaster" solution for Special Gymnastics Club

Wednesday 01 February 2023

Jersey Special Gymnastics Club has moved into Fort Regent after almost seven months of homelessness - but a long-term solution is still needed.

The sports hall at secure children’s home and youth remand facility Greenfields had been the home of the Jersey Special Gymnastics Club for more than a decade, but in July it was forced to move out, with all its equipment having been placed in storage and all activities put on hold since then.

The move followed recommendations from the Jersey Care Commission that the Greenfields facility should be made exclusively available to the young islanders at the secure home.

Although the club now has security until the end of the year, head coach Nikki Kirkland described the move as a "sticking-plaster solution" and said a long-term home was still required.


Pictured: The club at its previous premises.

She added: "We’re still on the lookout for somewhere permanent – that’s our dream.

"But it’s good to be able to start operating again, and our members are ecstatic."

Around 12 senior members of the club have already been able to take part in classes and training, while a programme of activity for junior members is set to start after half-term later this month.

Deputy Lucy Stephenson, assistant minister with responsibility for sport, said she was pleased it had been possible to find a new base for the club.

"It's good news, but I'm very aware that this is an interim solution until the end of 2023," she said. "The club is continuing to look for a permanent home, and although it is a private club, the government will be looking to support this search if we can."

Deputy Stephenson said the club's contract until the end of 2023 reflected the status of other sporting organisations using the Fort, including the Active gym, trampolining, martial arts and badminton, all of which are due to leave during the course of this year.


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Pictured top: The club in their new temporary home at Fort Regent. (Dave Ferguson)

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