A new Aikido centre is set to open in Preston, in the top room of an accountancy firm.Advertisement
Ian Cherry, a 5th Dan in the martial art, runs A I Cherry accountants on Winckley Square and has decided to diversify his building.
Cherry, who operates the Preston Aikido Club every Friday at Strettle’s, said the time is right to expand.
He said: “I bought this building, which used to be my old school. My office is what used to be my old classroom.
“There’s a top room which we’ve converted into a martial arts studio and we will be able to hold classes for up to 15 people.
“The current Friday classes are well attended but I believe aikido needs regular practice to really get the best out of people and the art.”
Five instructors work together to train the recruits, and Cherry hopes the leafy surroundings of Winckley Square can help trainees find their zen.
“I’ve been learning aikido since 1979,” he said, “for me it started as a hobby but it became a passion of mine.
“Doing it on just a Friday night isn’t enough, we want to be able to run more classes and as we pay for using Strettle’s it seemed mad not to start using the space I’ve got.
“Plus my wife wants our Friday nights back, as once you’ve done two hours of aikido there isn’t much time for anything else!”
Cherry, 59, has been established on Winckley Square for a long time and feels the Square itself could be used for some outdoor lesssons.
He said: “We’ll start in here, assuming we get the planning permission.
“From there we might look to take some lessons outside if we can get approval and depending on the weather.”
The dojo plans to run three lessons per week, and keep the Friday sessions at Strettles. It will cost £35 per month.
A basement at the accountancy firm has been converted into a changing room.
The full planning application can be seen on the Preston City Council website.
You can find out more details of the Preston Aikido club on their website.
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