Shipston man set to take on 12-hour boxing challenge for charity

A Shipston man is set to take on a 12-hour boxing challenge called 'Punching Through Crohn's Disease' as a charity fundraiser to benefit Crohn's & Colitis UK.

By Matt Elofson
Friday, 4th February 2022, 5:35 pm
Leo D’Erlanger, a professional boxer from Banbury, helps train Lee Williams for his 12-hour boxing challenge to benefit the charity Crohn's & Colitis UK (photo by Lee's son, Son Alfie Jack Williams)
Leo D’Erlanger, a professional boxer from Banbury, helps train Lee Williams for his 12-hour boxing challenge to benefit the charity Crohn's & Colitis UK (photo by Lee's son, Son Alfie Jack Williams)

Lee Williams, who lives in Shipston, has had the help of several professional boxers and trainers to complete the challenge of a 12-hour boxing and boxercise gym session.

He started a rigorous training programme more than three months ago at two local area gyms, one in Banbury at the Spit 'N' Sawdust gym and the other at Freestyle 360 Gym based in Blockley (near Moreton on Marsh). He will take on the challenge tomorrow, Saturday February 5 at Freestyle 360 Gym.

The challenge will see Lee take on 12 one-hour boxing sessions with various coaches who will take him through pad work, light sparing and general boxing fitness. Each hour he will be joined by small groups of people, who will be supporting him and pushing him along. His supporters range from the under 13s Banbury RUFC, a netball team and some of his training partners and other gym members.

Leo D’Erlanger, a professional boxer from Banbury, has also helped Lee with his training in preparation for the challenge.

Lee, who grew up in Banbury, said: "I have been doing my training at Spit ‘N’ Sawdust with Dave Earle (who runs and owns that boxing club in Banbury). Dave has helped me a lot over the last three years with my fitness, and conditioning during my recovery."

Lee's choice to launch a challenge to help the Crohn's & Colitis UK charity happened after a life-changing incident three years ago.

He shared his moving story on the GoFundMe web page he launched for the challenge.

Lee Williams was trained and helped by Dave Earle, the owner of the Spit 'N' Sawdust gym in Banbury (Submitted photo)

Lee said: "As some of you may or may not know three years ago I was rushed to hospital after I suddenly collapsed out of nowhere. Once there, I underwent major surgery after a fist sized abscess had grown and created a life changing situation around my bowels and organs.

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"The pathologist looked at the mass and diagnosed me with Crohn's disease. As a result I have had to not only rebuild myself physically and mentally, but I have also had to adjust my whole lifestyle. It has taken a lot for me to get back to where I am today, but I couldn't of done it without the support of those around me.

"Fast forward three years, and I'm still here. I'm still fighting and battling. Crohn's life is certainly different and the simple things that I once could do are now sometimes challenging and hard work. But, I have always remained positive, and I am constantly pushing myself.

"Earlier this year, I fulfilled a dream of climbing Snowdon whilst raising £1810.00 for Crohn's & Colitis UK."

To donate to Lee's 'Punching Through Crohn's Disease' challenge use the following GoFundMe web link: https://www.gofundme.com/f/12-hour-boxing-boxercise-challenge

Crohn's disease and Ulcerative Colitis are the two main forms of inflammatory bowel disease, affecting more than 300,000 people in the UK.