top of page


Higashi Karate Kai has been in operation for more than 50 years and has over 700 students in more than 20 dojos.

Higashi Karate Kai was founded by the late Peter Spanton - 9th Dan (Shihan)


Peter began karate training in the Wado-ryu style in March 1965 under Tatsuo Suzuki in the B.K.A. He was graded to Shodan in December 1966 and most recently, awarded his Kudan in 2015.


Other Japanese instructors he trained under were T. Kono, M. Shiomitsu, T. Takamizawa, also a little with Hayakama, Fuji and Toyama.


He represented GB in international events several times in 1966/67 and has officiated in international & world events as a kumite referee and judge and kata judge, and frequently officiated at EKF & EKC events as Chief Kata Judge. He was a WUKO Kumite and Kata Judge for a while and Chief Referee for England and has also been a member of various Executive and Technical Committees in the past. We believe he was the first English medal winner at a European event, with a bronze.

The current Chief Instructor of Higashi, Steve Bell (7th Dan), took over after the passing of Peter Spanton in late 2020. We continue to strive to live up to Peter’s teachings and principles.

Peter's philosophy of karate-do was deep, yet simple:

"Self improvement in everything one does."

Read an interview with Peter Spanton conducted in 2003 here.

bottom of page