New gym planned for Telford industrial estate
An industrial unit in Telford could be transformed into a health and fitness centre, under new plans poised to create 13 jobs and apprenticeships.
Planning permission is being sought from Telford & Wrekin Council to open a Foundry Gym at Stafford Park.
Those behind the plans say it will benefit local employment, promote health and wellbeing and help get troubled youths and offenders off the streets.
The gym, which would run boxing and martial arts clubs, will also take on three members of staff and 10 apprentices.
A report, submitted with the application, states: "This health and fitness facility would be part of an existing chain of gymnasiums that already offer these apprenticeships extremely successfully.
"We would be offering these to young people within the Telford and Wrekin area in conjunction with a number of local training providers who we already have excellent links with.
"These providers are Government-backed and are crying out for opportunities to offer young people a chance of ongoing employment.
"We already offer this and have multiple success stories whereby young adults have secured long-term employment through our existing gyms with many even progressing into management roles.
"We feel this would provide a fantastic opportunity for many young people who have aspirations for careers in the health and fitness industry.
"Also, we work with local children's care homes and offer free work experience to the young residents.
"This gives them vital experience and an opportunity to build self-esteem and confidence."
The industrial unit has been empty for more than two years and a 10-year lease has been agreed for the building.
The report states that there has been "huge demand" for a Foundry Gym franchise to open in the Telford and Wrekin area.
It continues: "There are relatively few facilities of this kind in Telford and there has been a huge swelling of support already.
"We have had numerous people regularly contacting requesting for a franchise to be opened and so believe it would be extremely successful.
"We feel Stafford Park is a perfect location for a facility like this.
"The idea is to offer a flexible facility for everybody who works on the industrial estate, especially shift workers.
"We will plan our opening hours around this, to make sure we can accommodate all we can.
"Shift workers in particular can have challenging hours, and we want to be there to help improve their physical and mental health.
"This is something we are very passionate about."
A decision on the proposals is expected to be made by Telford & Wrekin Council in the upcoming months.