- Premium air-rail link on board as official principal partner
- “This is the next chapter in the development of England Sevens” – Joe Lydon
Photo: Getty Images
The RFU has announced Heathrow Express as the new official principal partner of England Sevens. From this weekend, the premium air-rail link will appear on the front of the playing shirt for both the England men and England Women sevens teams.
Heathrow Express is an international brand with strong links in key sevens markets and will work closely with the RFU during a four-year partnership to further raise the profile of the rapidly-growing sport and increase support for the England teams.
England men will wear the branded shirts for the first time this weekend at the FIRA European Sevens Grand Prix in Bucharest and then over the nine events of the HSBC Sevens World Series that kicks off next month in Australia.
Competing in a separate six-leg IRB World Sevens Series which launches in Dubai in November and takes them to destinations including the USA and Brazil, England Women will also have Heathrow Express emblazoned across their playing kit.
There are strong synergies between Heathrow Express and sevens, both sharing a focus on speed and efficiency on the international stage. Heathrow Express offers the fastest way to travel between central London and Heathrow, the 15-minute journey equalling the length of a sevens match.
As part of this partnership, Heathrow Express is also becomes the official transport partner of the England Sevens teams, providing quick airport transfer for both squads who last season flew over 35 times and travelled more than 80,000 miles by air. The teams will be using Heathrow throughout the season, setting off this weekend to Bucharest.
The partnership brings benefits to sevens supporters too, as Heathrow Express will engage with fans on a match day with a presence at The Marriott London Sevens. The tournament is the final event of the HSBC Sevens World Series and each year has broken attendance records to reflect the growing appetite for the sport.
RFU Chief Commercial Officer Sophie Goldschmidt said: “It was a priority for us to secure a partner for the England Sevens and Heathrow Express is the perfect fit. The England squads compete in several markets which replicate the customer base of Heathrow Express, and they share our passion and commitment to growing the sport”
“Last year’s highlights included the England Men winning the tournament in Wellington and the Women in Houston, as well as more than 113,000 supporters attending the Marriott London Sevens. It is an exciting time for the sport and we are looking forward to working with Heathrow Express to build on recent successes and introduce even more people to the game.”
Keith Greenfield, Managing Director of Heathrow Express, added: “Heathrow Express is delighted to be on board with the England Sevens teams on their exciting journey. Having recently celebrated our 15 year anniversary as the ‘smarter way’ for passengers to travel between central London and Heathrow, we are looking forward to working with the RFU, and using the partnership to further promote the sport and Heathrow Express over the coming years.”
Recently-appointed Head of International Player Development Joe Lydon also welcomed the partnership.
“With a new head coach on board in Simon Amor and a competitive season about to get under way, this is the start of the next chapter in the development of England Sevens,” he explained.
“That is underlined by the support Heathrow Express are giving our men’s and women’s teams and the part they will play in growing the profile of the sport.”