By Grainne Cuffe, native democracy reporter
An award-winning group gym in Deptford began making its personal equipment to suit into folks’s houses or workplaces to create a “pandemic-proof” component to its enterprise.
Commando Temple, positioned beneath three arches of the Greenwich to London Bridge rail hyperlink, additionally rented out £50,000 of its equipment in a bid to outlive the previous 12 months.
Founder Rob Blair, who served within the Royal Marines for eight years, advised the native democracy service that when the pandemic hit, about half of the gym’s membership stayed on so the enterprise didn’t must take out “devastating loans”.
“I can’t even emphasise how essential that was as a result of in any other case we must have probably began taking loans out.
“But we didn’t as a result of the group rallied spherical and saved the memberships open,” Rob stated.
The gym, which in 2015 gained the Lewisham Business Awards greatest new enterprise, specialises in power coaching and martial arts.
It opened up once more in the course of the summer season however has been closed for 10 of the previous 13 months.
In line with lockdown easing steering, Commando Temple has opened up at the moment (April 12). Government grant funding has additionally helped renovate the gym for members to take pleasure in as they arrive again.
Rob stated: “We’ve been simply scraping by. The renovation is exhibiting our prospects that we’re not simply sitting on our arse doing nothing.
“We’ve been capable of reinvest it again into the area and to get folks enthusiastic about coming again.”
Rob additionally praised the gym’s landlord, the Arch Company.
“They’ve been very supportive of us up till this level,” he stated.
The individuals who continued to pay their memberships additionally saved Rob a whole lot of fear.
“We had sufficient that we didn’t must take out devasting loans – it made positive we have been capable of sleep at night time with out worrying an excessive amount of.
“Quite a lot of different companies haven’t made it, even multi-million pound companies have struggled.
“We’re a small gym in Deptford – in some methods we’ve been capable of make issues work higher as a result of we’re a small impartial and we’ve bought a loyal base, fairly than a giant chain.
“But we’ve additionally needed to be actually artistic to be sure that we’re capable of come again. The gym is being renovated.
“We’ve additionally labored on a one other factor throughout lockdown – making our personal equipment and equipment. That’s referred to as the Commando Cube and one thing that may hopefully be pandemic proof.
“The concept is that if somebody’s bought a storage or workplace area, we’ll be capable to construct in a self-sufficient gym, simply in case this occurs once more or in case they don’t wish to come again to the gym,” he stated.
On what the plan is from right here, Rob stated: “To open on Monday and never develop any extra gray hairs than I at the moment have, attempt to get some sleep, and spend extra time with my ten-month previous daughter.
“Most of our members have been messaging us and may’t wait to get again.”
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