Fundraiser steps into the ring for the first time

Published: December 11, 2014

Helen Keating - Boxing fundraiser - in the ring

East Ender Helen Keating did something a bit different her first ever fundraiser by stepping into the boxing ring in support of children’s hospice Richard House.

Helen, who is 41 and lives in Whitechapel, went with the boxing name ‘Hells Seven Bells’ to match her Bow Bells cockney background. She fought in the ring in front of 900 fans, including 70 friends and family at the London Irish Centre in Camden Square.

The fight, part of several on the night with the organisation White Collar Boxing London, has raised almost £5,000, including a generous £1,000 pledge from Helen’s employers Barclays.

Helen explains how she decided to get involved in the fight: “I’ve always been a huge boxing fan. My dad and I often go to York Hall to watch a few bouts and over the years I have had various boxing trainers in the gym and taken part in boxing classes. My friend Lorna said she had signed up for White Collar fight and joined White Collar Boxing London on the Old Kent Road. I loved it from the start and signed up for a fight straight away. I then watched Lorna’s first fight and had totally underestimated how hard it was going to be! I don’t think I would have signed up if I had seen the fights beforehand!”

“I then decided that I would use the experience to raise money for a local charity and make the pain worthwhile! I have been donating stuff to the Richard House shop in Romford for many years and so thought of them when it came to fundraising.”

Helen had been training along with her fellow boxers for ten weeks, but it was still a daunting experience for her on the night: “Walking into the arena for the pre-fight parade was absolutely terrifying! We were all together supporting each other on the night, but surprisingly when it was my turn to get into the ring, I had managed to get myself together and fully focus.”

“The whole three rounds of the fight are a total blur. I really don’t remember the fight itself and certainly didn’t feel any of the punches. It was pretty bloody in both corners!”

“The atmosphere was incredible. Totally overwhelming, an unbelievable feeling.”
– Fundraiser Helen Keating on her first ever boxing bout

Helen has promised her brother she will never fight again and so she leaves her boxing career undefeated as the fight ended in a draw.

To sponsor Helen, please visit:

Pictured: Helen in her debut in the boxing ring