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Aire Trampoline Club in Canterbury looking for new home due to rent burden

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One of Canterbury's most popular and successful sports clubs is being forced out of its premises by burgeoning rent and overheads.

Aire Trampoline Club, which has about 235 members including national standard performers, is having to vacate its unit in Wincheap by February 15.

Director of coaching Dexter Millen and coach Ellie Passfield of the Aire Trampolining Club
Director of coaching Dexter Millen and coach Ellie Passfield of the Aire Trampolining Club

It is currently negotiating to find a new home at a school site in the city. But its popular daytime activities, including bounce and play sessions and disability groups, will have to be dropped at its new venue.

The club, which is the only dedicated trampolining facility in the district and affiliated to British Gymnastics, was founded in 2003 and established its home in Cotton Road, Wincheap, in 2009.

Director of coaching Dexter Millen says the decision to vacate their established centre where they have 13 Olympic-sized trampolines was a tough one.

"We are a community not-for-profit organisation but pay £65,000 a year which is just no longer sustainable for a club like ours," he said.

"Unfortunately, the leaseholders of the unit, which is a pension investment company, were not prepared to come down. It's crazy, because they could now be left with a unit standing empty earning them nothing.

Aire Trampoline Club has 235 members
Aire Trampoline Club has 235 members

"It's been a reluctant decision because we are very well established and happy here and the building works very well for us, but we just had no choice."

Mr Millen said he was now in negotiations with a city school to use its hall, but that will mean the club's daytime sessions cannot continue.

"Hopefully, we can encourage more children to take up trampolining and with less rent burden can save a bit of money to work towards our ultimate goal of one day owning our own place outright," he said.

The move will not affect the club's satellite operations in Folkestone and Sandwich.

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