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02 CB Send Out - 16 November 2007

RFF Awards

Please find attached the latest awards made by the Rugby Football Foundation.

Presidents XV

RFU President Bob Taylor has launched this season's volunteer recognition awards. The award offers £10,000 in prize money to clubs rewarding their excellence and innovation in the grassroots game.

Sixty five clubs applied for the first set of awards, sparking furious debate among a panel of distinguished judges who will be joined this season by RFUW President Gill Burns. This year nominations can be made online before the deadline on 1 March 2008.

Go Play Rugby

Keep recruiting! All the indications are that we are well on the way to achieving our target of recruiting 6000 extra adult players at rugby clubs. It is important that CB campaign teams and their RDOs make the most the momentum delivered by the Rugby World Cup to encourage clubs to recruit more new players and do all they can to retain the ones they already have so that we not only beat but smash the target. and the text number 64411 will continue to promote the participating clubs via the postcode search (24,000 people have searched so far). 

Rugby will remain in the public eye with the Heineken Cup and the Six Nations in the spring so we must not miss this opportunity. For any more information please contact or ring Andy Lees on 07740 565066.


Each season, funding of £200 is available for each Merit Table/League taking place to help offset the administration costs. Applications are welcome for club Senior, U19''s, U18"s and U17’s rugby. To receive the funding, please complete and return this seasons form for approval.

You may be aware that James Winterbottom has left the RFU. Whilst very sad to lose such a valued member of staff, we are delighted that his replacement, Billy Clark, will be starting on Monday 19 November as Age Grade Competitions Manager.  He will be responsible for the successful delivery of the Daily Mail Schools cup competitions, National U17 Clubs competition and the National U20 CB Championship as well as working with Chris Burns on competition development. 

Billy currently works as a Sports Development Officer for Richmond-upon-Thames, having previously been an RDO and CRC with Leicester Tigers and a part-time member of the Leicester Tigers Academy.  Billy currently plays for Wimbledon RFC.  His contact details will be t.0870 143 2446 f.0870 143 2423 [].

Rugby Ready

The Coaching Department is pleased to announce a new Rugby Safety resource that has been developed by the International Rugby Board with the support of the English, Welsh & Scottish Rugby Unions. The ''Rugby Ready'' programme will help educate, aid and support players, coaches and referees on the importance of proper preparation for training and playing so that players enjoy Rugby to the fullest while reducing the risk of injury.

The Coaching Department will shortly be sending to every club (via the Club Coaching Coordinator) and ERFSU affiliated secondary school, a free Handbook and DVD. An on-line resource is also available through Coach Development Officers will be working with identified volunteers to provide bespoke training courses, delivered through local club clusters. 

Website Downtime

In conjunction with a revised sponsorship deal with Attenda, and all related websites will be moving onto faster, more robust servers. This improvement does necessitate some downtime. All websites will be unavailable from 7pm Wednesday 21 November until 10am Thursday 22 November.

Awards for All

This is a Joint Lottery Grants Programme that can fund a wide range of projects involving art, sport, heritage and community activities as well as projects which promote education, the environment & health. The project could be a sports project with £300-£10,000 available over a two-year period.  Visit and click on ''England’ to download the guidelines and application form.

Application can be done on line. It takes around eight weeks from application to decision. The requirements clearly set out in guidelines/form. Key opportunities for rugby clubs include:

  • Feasibility studies.
  • Club refurbishment where total project cost does not exceed £25,000 including VAT.
  • Club sports equipment, training, toys and games.
  • Venue hire, transport costs.
  • Extra curricular school club link coaching programmes.
  • Two presentations with helpful hints on the programme and how sports clubs can increase their chance of success are available on request.


SportsMatch has informed the RFU that it is no longer accepting applications for grants this financial year because its funding has already been allocated. Any further funding is subject to discussions surrounding the Comprehensive Spending Review that was announced recently, however no further funding has yet been identified. 

If you or your clubs already have a scheme running in year 1 or 2 and were expecting to be able to apply for further funding, it is unlikely that you will be able to do so. Please contact Sport England or Sportsmatch if you are in this situation to confirm what your options are. The RFU will inform the game via its website and through email send outs if the situation changes, but for now if you or any of your clubs wish to contact Sport England to comment upon the Sportsmatch situation please email

RFU Catastrophic Injury Task Group

This group was set up by the RFU Management Board in 2006 with three sub-groups to look at player safety; policy and procedures when and how the RFU is notified of a very serious or catastrophic injury; and ongoing support for those injured very seriously or catastrophically. 

The Task Group reported to the RFU Management Board in April 2007 and its recommendations unanimously accepted. Copies of the full report are being sent to each CB. A summary of its recommendations will be sent to clubs with the December issue of Touchline.

Regional Press Officer (London & South East)

Hugh Godwin joins us as a part time (3 days a week) Regional Press Officer on 3 December 2007. Hugh has a wealth of experience in sports journalism and writes frequently on rugby union. He has served as a chief reporter on Rugby News and currently writes for the Independent on Sunday as a freelance.

Constituent Body Orientation Day (CBOD)

This was held at Twickenham Stadium on 11 October 2007 was once again a very successful and well received event. 30 delegates attended from 13 Constituent Bodies across the country. New CB volunteers had the opportunity to each other and RFU staff members. Presentations included overviews of Community Rugby, RugbyFirst, Equity, Medical and Welfare and Go Play Rugby. Informal ''market stalls'' gave CB volunteers the chance to chat to staff from 18 different areas of the RFU and mingle with other attendees over lunch.

The closed with an optional stadium tour. Comments included: "As a new CB officer it was nice to see the people that previously just appear as names on email. I thought it was an excellent insight into what happens at the top level and the massive amount of organisation this takes”. “Excellent day, very well organised and presented. From ‘welcome’ to ‘goodbye safe journey’ got the impression RFU cared and are working hard to help CB’s and clubs”. Delegates feedback will improve next year’s CBOD with places for up to 70 CB volunteers.

England Women

England Women are back in international action this December. England A and the reigning RBS 6 Nations champions England take on the USA in back-to-back internationals on December 12th (kick-off 7pm) and December 15th (kick-off 230pm) respectively with both games being hosted by London Irish ARFC.

It is exciting times for England Elite squad of 44 which has a new coach at the helm, Gary Street, and a new captain, Catherine Spencer, as the team prepare for their bid to win the RBS 6 Nations championship for an unprecedented third time on the bounce. England last played the USA in the 2006 IRB Women’s Rugby World Cup curtain-raiser game and picked up an 18-0 victory. Team England and the RFUW would welcome your support. Entry to the A game is free - see the poster below.

Gartmore Challenge Tickets

Last chance to see the World Champions! Tickets for the Gartmore Challenge match between the Barbarians and South Africa are selling quickly. South Africa have confirmed that they will be bringing a full strength squad - including 24 of their recent World Cup winning squad.  Bryan Habana, Schalk Burger and captain John Smit will all take to the Twickenham field on Saturday 1st December. The last few tickets are on sale from the Ticketmaster website.

Greenwood back at Twickenham

Rugby World Cup legend Will Greenwood was last week put in his place at Twickenham as the laying of the England Rugby Walk of Legends began with his being the first of the 60 legend quadrants to be laid. Stones, including the special rose stones, are still available. The walkway will be unveiled to the public in time for the RBS 6 Nations in February.


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