A COUNCILLOR took part in an all-female taekwondo class to raise awareness about free weekly activity sessions for women in Worcester.

City councillor Richard Udall was the only man at the Only Girls Allowed class in the Green Centre, in Gresham Road, Worcester, on Wednesday.

The centre offers free childcare to women at the sessions, eliminating one of the main barriers for mothers who want to take part in sport.

Cllr Udall, who supports the programme with his divisional funds, said: "The big problem mothers have is having time to do sport.

"If they are staying at home with their children they need someone to look after them while they are doing sport.

"When their partners come home they might be able to do some but by then they are tired.

"This - as far as I'm aware - is the one place that provides free childcare and exercise.

"I have to admit I felt nervous about joining in.

"I realised how unfit I am, I was perspiring at a very early stage. I stuck out like a sore thumb but they made me feel very welcome and didn't laugh too much.

"We did star jumps, running on the spot, stretching of muscles and other exercises relating to taekwondo.

"I used to do karate between 18 and 25. I knew what I had to do but the body was not willing to cooperate."

The weekly sessions started last year and are organised by Worcester Community Trust and Worcester Warriors' Community Foundation.

Laura Bolon, community education officer for the foundation, thanked councillor Udall for giving £5,000 to the programme, which saved the sessions from being scrapped.

Women without children are also welcome to attend the classes, which take place at the Green Centre every Wednesday, during term time.