Parents' anger after local boxing gym organises kids' 'fight club' offering warring pupils at school chance to settle differences

Warriors Gym in Whitburn, West Lothian, told kids on Facebook that it is offering them the chance to have it out with "no cameras, no friends – just the two of you".

Fitness centre owner David Orr claimed to be offering the "fight club" event to school children as a way of reducing growing reports of violence at local schools.

The post read: "Been a lot of violence at Armadale and Whitburn Academy recently, police been in attendance regularly.

"I will put this offer to all kids from any school, if you want to fight each other message me, you can have a square go in the ring, no cameras no friends just the 2 of you.

"You will fight until someone gives up but you WILL shake hands and that's the case closed and you move on with your life."

However the idea was slammed by locals.

One woman wrote: "The worst idea. Deal with violence by violence until someone gives up.

"If anything it would cause more trouble by going back to school and one person making a mockery of the other for ‘giving up’ in a fight."

Others did back the idea, though, with one user writing: "Outstanding idea.

"I think that in a controlled environment some of these issues could be resolved. Even if it helps one boy or girl then surely that’s deemed a success."

Owner David Orr told the Daily Record: "Since the post has been put up we never knew it would go so crazy […]

"If any of the kids wanted to have a 'square go' it would have to be both set of parents agreed, waivers signed, and it would just be me and the 'square goers'.

"The hope is that I can get them together and let them speak without anybody else around egging them on, or social media spreading things that are not true.

"If, after all of that, they wish to still fight, it's fists only, with 16oz gloves and headguards which we use for sparring."

A West Lothian Council spokesman denied there had been any rise in violent incidents in local schools, as claimed by the gym.

The spokesman said: “We completely refute any suggestion that there has been any significant increase in violent incidents in our schools, which remain safe environments for pupils and staff.

“We are aware of a number of isolated incidents, which have been widely circulated on social media recently. Such incidents are rare and can happen in any school across Scotland, and do not represent our schools or the overwhelming majority of our pupils.

“Swift action has been taken against those responsible for the incidents, and we are working with partners such Police Scotland to reinforce safety and respect messages to all our pupils.”

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