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Surrey Rugby host successful RFU executive roadshow

30 September 2009

  • Francis Baron and Martyn Thomas sample flavour of rugby in Surrey
  • Three-day tour takes in schools and clubs

RFU Chief Executive Francis Baron (left) and Chairman of the Management Board Martyn Thomas

Photo: Getty Images

Surrey Rugby Chairman Malcolm Caird has spoken of his pleasure at the success of the Rugby Football Union executive roadshow which his constituent body (CB) hosted in late September.

Francis Baron, the RFU Chief Executive, and Martyn Thomas, Chairman of the Management Board, led a four-man panel who made on a three-day tour of rugby in the county, taking in clubs and schools and meeting players, coaches, referees, administrators and volunteers.

Baron and Thomas were joined by Chairman of the Community Game Board Rob Udwin and Director of Community Rugby Andrew Scoular for the trip from September 25 to September 27 – the 18th such roadshow undertaken by RFU executives since 2006.

"What we tried to show was a complete cross-section of all facets of rugby in Surrey," said Caird, whose CB was the pilot organisation in the 'Go Play Rugby' campaign.

"There was a schools match between a state school and a more traditional rugby-playing school, and we visited clubs in both the city suburbs and the leafy lanes.

"All the clubs appreciated the RFU group's presence and feedback, and overall from a Surrey Rugby point of view we were delighted with the weekend. It was a worthwhile exercise and we are sure Francis Baron and his colleagues feel the same way."

The visit kicked off with a lively question and answer session at Chobham RFC on Friday evening where the RFU executives fielded questions on rugby’s hot topics, including the summer’s adverse headlines affecting the image of the game.

Responding to a question on this subject, Baron said: "We have reminded the game of its Core Values and we want to get the entire game to re-affirm them. The Image of the Game Task Group will report this week. I hope it's a watershed, and that the game will redefine itself and move forward."

The RFU group then took in Glyn Technology School and Old Emanuel RFC on Saturday, and a mini and youth activity at Haslemere Community Rugby Club on Sunday.