HAVE-A-GO Mayor Ernest Gibson really threw himself into his latest appointment.
Coun Gibson put his judo skills to the test when he called in to see youngsters at South Shields Judo Club.
The Mayor, who is a black belt, hit the mat with his former coach Tom Foster as part of the club’s celebrations to mark World Judo Day on Monday.
During the visit Coun Gibson, who trained for 16 years in judo, was able to revive his Judo skills and see if he still had the moves.
He said: “Judo is an excellent sport which brings everyone together. It works every muscle in your body, gives you a really good workout and is a fantastic way to keep fit.
“Judo is something I used to do as a young person and Tom Foster was my coach so it’s great to come back on World Judo Day to see how the club has progressed.
“To see so many young people enjoying the sport I once took part in is just brilliant.”
He added: “As well as the fitness side of the sport, those who take part in judo sessions also learn about discipline and respect.”
Mr Foster said: “The club has gone from strength to strength over the years and it’s great to have been able to welcome the Mayor of South Tyneside to the club on World Judo Day to see the young people in action. I was also quite impressed with some of his moves.
“We have about 130 members at the club, with ages ranging from five to 65 years old.
“Celebrating World Judo Day is important as it gives us a chance to celebrate the birthday of the founder of Judo Jigoro Kano and raise awareness of the benefits of the sport.”
The club meets at Ocean Road Community Centre, South Shields, from 5.30pm to 6.30pm every Monday, for five to seven-year-olds, from 6.30pm to 7.30pm for eight to 16-year-olds and from 7.30pm to 8.45pm for senior members.
It also takes over Temple Park Leisure Centre from 4pm to 5pm, for five to 16-year-olds, on Tuesdays, and on Fridays, from 6pm to 7pm for five to seven-year-olds, 7pm to 8pm for eight to 16-year-olds and from 8pm to 9pm for seniors.
For more information, visit www.southshieldsjudoclub.co.uk, or call 452 5624 or 07725 111056.