Royston BID blow boxing boss: ‘I suppose that I’m just going to have to pay it’

Billy Crotty

Billy Crotty - Credit: Archant

The owners of a boxing club in Royston who were summoned to court for refusing to pay a business levy have said that with a heavy heart they will cough up the cash.

Dave Blows and Billy Crotty of Royston Amateur Boxing Club previously told of how they refused to pay out of principle, as they see the club as a community facility and do not operate it as a business to make a profit.

Speaking outside Stevenage Magistrates’ Court after he was told by a North Herts District Council representative that he wasn’t exempt from paying the levy, Billy said: “I still feel pretty much the same as before about having to pay it.

“It’s just the running about, time, effort, and money it’s cost to pursue it.

“It’s a bit of an uphill struggle having a boxing club in itself without having to pay the BID levy. But it seems like a black and white issue, with all businesses, even charity shops, paying it.”

Billy could still try to appeal, or write to his MP, but he is resigned to the fact that he will probably have to pay it anyway, and doesn’t have time to keep fighting it.

It’s not the only trouble with the authorities that Billy has faced since owning a boxing club in the town.

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Two years ago, the gym was raided by police searching for drugs that weren’t there, causing substantial damage to equipment and lockers, which they are only just getting round to compensating him for.

A spokeswoman for Herts police said: “Officers have made contact with Mr Crotty and will be working with him to try and bring about a positive resolution to the matter.”

Billy added: “Boxing is a good thing for young people, it was a good influence on my life when I was young.

“If I smoked or did drugs, my trainers would have killed me. We don’t get any help.

“I’m going to buy my kids kit through my tree surgeon business, through sponsorship. It would be good if there was more help from the council.”