- Search is on to find the best supported grassroots rugby clubs in England
- Online voting is now open until 12pm May 30
Former England and Lions forward Phil Vickery has launched Pride of the Nation, a campaign developed by NatWest and the RFU to find the best supported grassroots rugby clubs in England.
The rewards for being crowned ‘Pride of’ in each of the four regions will include a visit from an England international during the NatWest RugbyForce weekend on Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 June.
Encouraging clubs to gather support and compete for the titles, NatWest Pride of the Nation ambassador Phil Vickery said: “We want to find out which grassroots rugby clubs are the best supported in England, and which club can truly call themselves the overall ‘Pride of the Nation’.
“They won’t necessarily be the biggest in size, nor have won the most titles, but they will certainly be the best loved. We’re hoping clubs seize this fantastic opportunity to rally the troops and get the whole community involved.”
Over the next week, clubs will need to demonstrate the strength of their support by calling on all members, friends and local community members to vote online to get them to the top of the leader board.
Split into the four RFU regions – North, Midlands, London & South East and the South West – four rugby clubs will be crowned ‘Pride of’ their region. Each of these four clubs will then be asked to explain in just 200 words why their club deserves to win the ultimate title ‘Pride of the Nation’.
Winners from each of the regions will be rewarded with a visit from an England International over the NatWest RugbyForce weekend. They will also receive a plaque to sit proudly in their clubhouse, as well as a brand new barbeque. In addition to these amazing prizes, the overall Pride of the Nation winner will receive a brand new pitch kit for their club.
Vickery added: “Every international rugby player started their career playing for their local club. For me, Bude is where my passion and love of the game was built.
“The role grassroots rugby plays in establishing our love for the game is vital, by entering Pride of the Nation and signing up for NatWest RugbyForce you’re helping strengthen the foundations of your local club for years to come. There’s absolutely no excuse not to get involved.”
To be in with a chance of winning, everyone can show their support for their club by voting here. Voting closes at 12pm on May 30.