Whitburn six-year-old fighting sensation heading to Italy for European karate championship

A six-year-old fighting sensation is preparing to head to Italy to compete in a European karate competition.

Joshua Parkin, from Whitburn, will showcase his karate skills at the World Union of Karate-Do Federations European championships in November.

The schoolboy, who attends the Dokan Karate Club which runs from Whitburn and Cleadon, has already proved himself worthy of a place in the competition, after only starting karate a year ago at the age of five.

So far Joshua has competed in numerous competitions taking home medals including a gold in the EKA Open Karate Championships, three golds and bronze at the The Dokan Karate Association South Shields, a silver and two bronze medal at the English Academy Warrington competition and two golds at the GB Open Karate Championships in Wolverhampton.

Joshua has been impressing with his karate performances.

Parents Kirsty Parkin and Ryan Carr are thrilled with Joshua’s achievements in the sport he loves so much.

Dad, Ryan said: “Joshua started his karate at the age of five and straight away his sensei realised he had a talented star on his hands.

“He is a little superstar and even though hes only 6 hes a very popular pupil in his karate club as students have taken a shine to him. With Joshua’s progression and then the European championships in Italy becoming available for him to take part in and its a massive experience for him.”

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Joshua practising his karate moves

Ryan, who is supervisor at Be Modern on Bede Industrial Estate said he has been amazed by the support from his employers ahead of Joshua’s competition in Italy.

The company, which specialises in furniture manufacturing, has agreed to sponsor Joshua and follow him on his journey as well as donating £1,000 to help with the cost of attending the competition.

Before heading to Italy, Joshua still has a few competitions in the UK to compete in. Next month he will compete in the GB Open Karate Championships in Birmingham and an under 18’s competition in Leeds. Finally in October he will compete in the Manchester Open Karate Championships.

The European championships take place in Florence Italy at the Palazzo Wanny Arena from November 3 to 6.

Joshua with trophies