A CRAYFORD gym has welcomed gymnasts from Russia and Australia preparing for the Olympics.

Europa Centre, in Vimy Way, Crayford, opened its doors to six Russian gymnasts, their coach and choreographer from the Vladimir School of Gymnastics.

Two Australian gymnasts and their coach from Perth Institute of Sport also visited.

They were training at the centre in preparation for the Visa International Gymnastics at the O2, the final qualification event for the Olympics, which finishes on Wednesday(January 18).

Manager of the gym, Len Arnold, said: "It's really great to have the facilities which enable us to welcome international gymnasts to train and eventually compete in the new centre."

Vladimir School of Gymnastics has produced European, world and Olympic champions during its 50 year history.

Europa is now in final discussions to twin the two clubs to create and develop an exchange programme for gymnasts, coaches and officials.