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Durham clubs embrace self-appraisal scheme

15 October 2013

  • New trio reach RFU benchmark
  • Self-assessment reveals high standards
Horden RUFC club accreditation

Photo: RFU Archive

Rugby union in Durham County continues to go from strength to strength with three more clubs, Sedgefield RUFC, Consett RUFC and Seaham RUFC swelling the number achieving the official RFU Accreditation standard to 17.

Horden RUFC are the most recent recipients of the documentation and plaque which accompanies the award, with Darlington RUFC, another club to achieve the distinction, set to collect their commemorative items at their 150th anniversary dinner next month.

West Hartlepool, Yarm, Bishop Ackland and Sunderland have all recently swelled the tally of Durham RFU clubs to have reviewed their structures and processes with a view to creating more enjoyable and safer places to play the sport.

The accreditation process requires clubs to conduct a self-assessment of the way the club is organised and is based on the six key drivers – retaining and developing players, recruiting new players, recruiting and retaining high-quality coaches, volunteers and referees, effective and efficient facilities, effective and efficient management and governance and integration with the local community.

Matthew Bryan, Rugby Development Officer for Durham, said: “I’m delighted to see so many Durham clubs going through the accreditation process. It is not a particularly onerous task, but it enables clubs to take a detailed look at how they operate with the benefit of an RFU blueprint to compare themselves against.

“For many clubs the work involved is very satisfying in that clubs who have previously gone through the Seal of Approval awards scheme can see that they are still running their club in line with the system of best practice laid down by the governing body.

“None of our clubs has needed to make radical adjustments to the way they have been operating, but the fact that they have carefully examined their systems, tweaked whatever needed to be adjusted, and come through with a plaque is very reassuring.

“It means that when parents take their youngsters to these clubs, they know they are in safe hands and being well looked after within a properly organised and monitored structure.

“With the 2015 World Cup now looming large and lots of efforts and resource being put into making sure that there is a significant legacy from that event, it is vital that we have the infrastructure in place to cater properly for that additional demand.” 

The Rugby Football Union Club Accreditation scheme aims to help all rugby clubs in England become stronger, more effective, more efficient and more enjoyable places to play rugby by providing a framework for a club to show what it is doing, how it does it and where it can improve.