A bit of the Club’s History:
1984: The Club was officially founded in 1984 by Mr David Neil. It first operated from Ballasalla School with only 40 gymnasts in attendance.
1986: In 1986 the club moved to a different premises: Arbory School.
In 1987, numbers were growing to 60 and more so the club needed to use other additional facilities. The club decided on Castle Rushen High School. At this time, David Niell left and we gained another Head Coach.
1998: In 1998, we were doing very well, as such we hosted the first Open Aged Group Championships and CRHS.
1989: In 1989, the club moved its main facilities from CRHS to St. Ninians due to the ever-increasing numbers. This year was a momentus year for the club, as 2 gymnasts competed for the first time in the Island Games. In 1990, the gym saw the introduction of four piece gymnastics.
1991: In 1991, the numbers in the gym increased to 120 and the IOM Gymnastics Associated was formed.
1992: In 1992, plans were hatched for a new facility.
1993: In 1993, gymnasts from EVGC competed for the first time in the UK and some even competed in the Island Games. ]
1994: In 1994, Cristina Bontas of Romania, who was a gold medalist in the 1992 Olympics, joined the club for a year to help develop the club. This was the year the club began classes in Ramsey as the club had an impressive 185 gymnasts registered.
1995: In 1995, plans were submitted for the facility you see today, were finally passed after much hassle. Also, one of the club’s gymnasts gained the Island’s first Gold Medal in the Island Games in Gibraltar.
1996: In 1996, fundraising began with a ‘Stop the Clock’ raffle for a Vauxhall Corsa!
1997: In 1997, the club had to move into Fairfield School to accommodate the rising numbers of the gymnasts, with also opening more classes at Peel Clothworkers’ School, the club had reached 220. Another fantastic achievement was seen in this year where more gymnasts competed in the Island Games in Jersey where we won an amazing Team Bronze.
1999: In 1999, the club had raised enough money to begin building the professional facility in March of this year, but could not get an agreement for the lease. In November of this year, the club broke ground for the new facility.
An AMAZING YEAR!
Ellan Vannin Gymnastics Club opened in the year 2000 as an actual purpose-built facility. A small team of dedicated coaches ran and opened the purpose-built gym in 2000 but still held other classes in various parts of the Island. Only a few remain from that original team of coaches and staff which shows the true love and commitment of the sport.
In 2011, the original layout of the gym was changed to be able to host the Youth Commonwealth Games (Men’s). An extension at this point was required to have the maximum vaulting runway. This allowed the club to extend the back of the building so that it could also facilitate a large viewing gallery for future competitions. The club utilised even more space to provide the future club with a fully-fitted office, a coaches/judges room and a physiotherapy room. The extension has provided us with a fully-equipped gym which we continue to love.
In December 2015, the island experienced devastating floods, leaving catastrophic damages to our club and the sports facilities around the area. The damage to our club was shocking, as such, the entire club had to move into a school to allow gymnasts to maintain their classes. Luckily, we were able to quickly source new equipment, giving the gym a completely new look. Gymnova supplied us with a different layout and new bits of equipment that was definitely worth the months of waiting.
Gymnastics is a fundamental skill that helps within all sports. The club has progressed well for the Island and has even seen some gymnasts travel to the UK to compete at National competitions. We are looking forward to the development of the gym and giving all children a fun and enjoyable experience where they can grow and improve.