A Squared Architects and Attleborough Boxing Club

Attleborough Boxing Club (ABC) was established in 2008 with the aim of improving the fitness of bodies and minds through boxing. Despite being run entirely by volunteers, the club has grown exponentially, providing training to increasing numbers of people of all ages, including many from vulnerable or challenging backgrounds. It has achieved many awards, including the Attleborough Community Award in 2010, 2013 and 2014, England Boxing ClubMark status in 2011 (renewed in 2014), and in 2017 won the Active Norfolk, “Community Club of the Year” award. It was recently said by the Chief Constable that antisocial behaviour in Attleborough had gone down by 12 percent and attributed a high percentage of this to Attleborough Boxing Club.

A Squared Architects is a studio-based practice, located in Norwich. Its portfolio includes new residential, retail and office developments, as well as conversions and extensions, and ecclesiastical renovations.

Project summary – To accommodate the growing numbers of people wishing to use the club and provide a more comfortable service for its members, ABC asked Norfolk ProHelp for architectural support to design changing rooms, a shower block and treatment room, and to redesign a cart shed into sleeping accommodation. It was key that the design layouts between the new building and existing structures were safe, accessible and best utilised the space available. A Squared Architects carried out the work required; contributing pro bono work to the value of £2,750.

Once a completed scheme design has been submitted and planning consent obtained, other ProHelp professionals will contribute additional pro bono work. The quantity surveyor, Andrew Morton Associates, will prepare a budget cost plan which will form a useful basis for funding the project and to assist with this cost planning the structural engineers, Plandescil, and the building services engineer, PJ Cozens, will also provide input.

Impact – The project delivered:

  • A professional buildings design portfolio that meets the required regulatory frameworks and conditions, including (potentially) up to RIBA Stage E
  • The ability to confidently present the proposals to county and local authorities and elected members
  • The ability to invite clubs from all over the world to come and take part in training camps and sparring sessions
  • Professional designs put the club in a better position to access funding
  • Input as to how the existing space around the club might be better used to develop new services and activities

“Paul from A Squared Architects has been a massive help to the ABC Project and has been over to the club on several occasions to try and push the project forward, making sure on all occasions that the design and area of the project fits in with our vision for the future. Paul has come up with many ideas to try to make the project as eco-friendly as possible, but also taken into consideration that we have limited funds available, so has always tried to make it cost effective. It has been a pleasure to work with Paul and his company and we would be happy to use his company again in the future.” Colin Wilby, Chair of Attleborough Boxing Club

“A Squared Architects are very pleased to be involved with the development of Attleborough Boxing Club. The first step is obtaining planning consent for the new changing rooms and dormitory block, the process for which is under way, and we hope will receive a positive response from the local planning authority.” Paul Abbott, A Squared Architects