History

focus-judo-badge-logoFrom humble beginnings, the Focus Judo Club is one of the oldest Judo Clubs in Scotland.

Having just celebrated its 50th anniversary. The club was originally set up by Mr Bill Hislop, a popular man who was well known for running a barbers shop in Galashiels. Remarkably, he was inspired to take up Judo after watching the film “Blood on the Sun”, starring James Cagney, who learnt Judo in Japan and was a Blackbelt. The Youtube video on this page shows the scene that probably inspired the formation of Focus Judo Club! Without any Judo clubs in the local area, Bill would travel down to London at weekends to train with Gunji Guzubi, the founder of the first martial arts club in Europe, the Budokwai. With his new found knowledge, Bill brought Judo to Galashiels, holding sessions at various locations including the upstairs room of the Douglas Hotel and the old Ladhope School. We are now located at the Focus centre.

From the early days of canvas mats and poor facilities, we now have two high quality mat areas and four qualified coaches to oversee training.