New gym opens at Caistor Top
A new gym will be open in Caistor from today (Monday, October 17, 2016).
The gym, at the former Toppers store at Caistor Top, will be called BFitLincs. It will be run by former RAF military police officer Amy Atkins, a 2nd Dan Black Belt holder in Judo, and a former title holder at the British Judo Championships.
Amy and partner Nigel, a serving RAF military police officer, moved to Caistor about three years ago and have two children, Kaitlyn, four, and Amber, one.
The setting up of the gym has been a family affair, with Amy’s parents in law Carol and Bill, also from Caistor, helping out.
Amy said she switched to becoming a personal trainer since Amber was about four months old, as the work was easier to fit round family commitments.
She decided to open the gym because she saw “a massive gap in the market.”
The former warehouse-style store has been extensively revamped to make the building more inviting. When the new-look floor was praised, Amy revealed that she had a policy of using local contractors as much as possible.
She has also employed local people, taking on two apprentices from Caistor and another from Grimsby. There is still an opening for a qualified gym instructor.
The facilities will be open from 7am-10pm, Monday to Fridays, and from 8am-6pm at weekends, with membership fees being set at £25 per month, or £20 for those who work in the military or the emergency services. Students and seniors will also be eligible for the £20 per month rate.
The monthly fee does not include the cost of classes, but members will be offered participation in the classes at a reduced rate.
Mums will be the target clients between 9.30-10.30am, when they will be able to drop off their children at school and then go straight to classes in Bodypump and High Intensity Interval Training (Hiit). Those who work traditional office hours will also be catered for, with a Legs, Bums and Tums and Body Blaster class between 7.15-7.45am. There will be other classes throughout the day.
There are plans for classes for pre and post-natal groups, plus Pilates and yoga. It is hoped a crèche will be provided on-site for people using the gym, and there will be a small cafe area serving Stokes coffees.
Space has been allocated for parking to the left of the building, as it is important that the gym’s customer traffic does not interfere with the adjoining car sales business, which uses the spaces nearest to the road.
The owners of the site, and the wider area, are currently seeking planning permission to demolish existing buildings and build 17 business units at Caistor Top. The news was universally welcomed by town councillors when they met last Thursday (October 13, 2016). They described the development for the brownfield site as “just what’s needed”.
If the application for the business units is successful, Amy said the gym will be the last building to be demolished, with occupancy in one of the new units already agreed. The agreement suggests the applicants would be keen to push ahead quickly with their plans, rather than a trend often seen elsewhere of space remaining unused, despite having been awarded permission for development.
Amy and her team of helpers, made up of family and friends, were preparing for a formal opening by Caistor Mayor Carol Mackenzie when the Citizen arrived late Saturday morning.
Despite knowing the facilities were not quite in the state that she would have liked them to be displayed, Amy was generous with her time, answering questions and allowing photographs to be taken.