BoxerA Hampshire firefighter is turning pro boxer after being encouraged to do so by one of Britain’s greatest ever champions.

Charlie Quinn, 25, who fights in the light heavyweight division, only started boxing at 19 but has been brought up around the sport with his dad and brother both boxing for the Army's Parachute Regiment.

The fighting firefighter, who works at St Mary’s Fire Station, Southampton, has been an amateur for six years but had a long period out of the ring after picking up an injury sparring with his brother who went on be an Army Light Heavyweight champion.

Charlie “The Mighty” Quinn fought as an amateur out of the Golden Ring club, in Millbrook and won the majority of his amateur fights.

Over the last 18 months he has trained and sparred with several high calibre fighters including Chris Eubank junior who he was sparring in the run up to his recent fight with Nick Blackwell.

It was here he met the legendary boxer Chris Eubank senior, a world champion for five years, who saw Charlie had what it takes to make it professionally.

Charlie said: “I had been thinking of turning professional but I think hearing it from somebody so experienced and talented sealed my decision. It was a massive compliment.

“I think I have what it takes to go all the way to the top – the thing I am most worried about is selling enough tickets for the fights to take place.”

Charlie is hoping that friends, supporters and colleagues from Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service will turn out to support him.

He said: “Having a physical job helps with my training and the discipline, toughness and courage you need as a firefighter carry across into the ring. Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service have been extremely supportive.”

The talented boxer will have his first professional fight on July 9 at Liquid and Envy nightclub in Portsmouth.

He is being trained by his dad Steve who is not only a former light heavyweight but also a former firefighter who used to head up the Arson Task Force and was group manager for New Forest.

He has recently obtained a British Boxing Board of Control professional trainers licence.

Fellow firefighter Station Manager Ben Allen has taken over as Charlie’s strength, and conditioning coach and also manages his nutritional program at Southampton Crossfit, while his fitness has been monitored by Southampton Solent University.

The skilful fighter, from Marchwood, who weighs in at just under 13 stone, is also getting expert help from Team GB athletics physiotherapist Faith Cripps at Hampshire Physiotherapy.

He turned professional in April this year and will be promoted by Goodwin Promotions who work with David Hayes’ Hayemaker Promotions.

Tickets cost from £35 and go up to £65 for ringside seat or £100 for VIP passes.