I hope you and your family have managed during the recent months in what has been challenging times for us all. Normally by now we would have sent out a fixture card for the season with matches, cups and festivals all starting to happen, but as you are aware at this moment, we are unable to start competitive contact rugby.
All the players, support staff and Committee members are looking forward to seeing you at some point as we work to get back into action.
During the period from the shutdown start in March until now we have of course been governed by the Coronavirus regulations but I’m glad to say that the senior players have returned to training during the week and our Minis/Juniors/Girls/Colts have return to training on a Sunday.
After the great Intermediate Cup and Spitfire Vets Cup runs of last season all the senior sides are hoping for a start to the season as soon as possible with an aim to improve the league positions for all the teams. Our Colts are building on last season aiming to also improve their results, with many of the older lads looking to play senior rugby as the season progresses.
Our Minis and Juniors continue to look healthy and the return to Horn Park has gone very well. We are seeing many of the players moving through the club and now taking their place in our Colts and senior squads. We have integrated the RFU ‘AgeGrade Rugby’ concept and are part of the Quilter Kids First Rugby programme. Of course, we will have to build again after the long break but thanks to the efforts of the managers and coaches keeping contact with players and parents during the lock down not many players have been lost.
The girls’ teams are also in a good position but in the same situation as the rest happy to be back training and hopeful that competitive games can resume soon. We are looking to expand the number of players in all the age groups and the coaches and managers are going to give it their best effort. The next target is to really get our Laddies team up and running so we have a complete setup for the girls to aim for.
Thanks also must go to Vicky Fleetwood and Tom Chapman who during lock down ran a very successful Zoom Fitness session for all the family to join in and then ran the first sessions back at the club to prove our planned processes worked.
Our Outreach Programme although also effect by the recent events has seen new members joining and schools wanting to make rugby a part of their curriculum. We are still working in five local schools and are building on a plan to expand this, the funding for this will come from the Rugby Camps we are now running ourselves. We are also now running an after-school club at Horn park which is proving successful encouraging boys and girls who do not regularly play a chance to get some experience before joining the main sessions on a Sunday
Can I encourage you to become a social member of the rugby club only £10 per month and to thank those who already are, also to our sponsors a massive thanks your support without these inputs the club would not be able to run the activities we do
The Rugby Club is a Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC), this gives us tax benefits similar to those for charities, including Gift aid. For every £1 donation you give us, we can claim an extra 25p from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.
Also, those who are in the 200 Club are making a further contribution to the club, over £15,000 at present. Please join if you have not already Peter Davies is the contact for this (firstname.lastname@example.org), just £5 a month with a chance to win some big cash prizes.
To everyone a thank you for the support given during our JustGiving Campaign we beat our target which will help the club maintain our programme during the current challenging times.
On a sad note we lost Ron Seymour in December, he was a great Old Colfeian and I’m proud to say a great friend who I spent time on tour with as well as many touchlines around the country, plus a few conversations in the bar, he will be missed.
There has been some social activity started at the club where it has been great to meet up with people again, following the social distancing rules of course. Remember you can keep up to date with what is happening on the web site (http://ocrfc.co.uk/club)
A thank you as well to all the people who turned up on a Tuesday during August/September to the Working Group many tasks were completed, the club is looking and functioning much better because of this.
Our partnership with the Wooden Spoon the Children’s Charity of rugby work really well last season, our efforts contributed over £1000 to the work in our local area, we have again set ourselves a set of objectives so watch out for how you can support as the season progresses.
We have also linked into the CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young) charity and will be also looking to support their efforts.
See you on the touch line or at an event soon, I hope.
Dave Hodgkiss – OCRFC Chairman