- Warm-up session strikes a chord with girls
- Rugby new girls quickly into their stride
Photo: RFU Archive
Bydales School from Marske-by-the-Sea in Cleveland is one of the 100 newcomers selected by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) to be in the second tranche of schools to take part in the highly-acclaimed All Schools programme.
And judging from the reaction to an hors d’oeuvres to the main course, which begins in September, the school looks to have another winner on the sporting menu.
While Redcar RUFC is virtually on the doorstep, rugby activity at Bydales has previously been sporadic, although there has been some interaction with the boys at the school via input from the RFU and the local club.
It is, however, the girls who have delivered the first optimistic note ahead of the project getting underway in earnest in September.
While women and girls rugby is developing at a rapid pace nationwide, the sport was completely new to the girls at Bydales before RFU Community Rugby Coach for Redcar & Cleveland, Richie Young, decided that an ‘unofficial’ taster session might give the girls a flavour of what the All Schools Programme is about and what the game has to offer.
“The All Schools Programme is now part of the timetable for the girls, who will now play rugby regularly along with the boys, so I felt that an introductory session would be especially useful for them,” said Young.
“The event took the form of an Inter-House Girls Tag and Touch Festival for teams from Years 7,8,9 and 10, with around 80 girls involved. Their reaction to the session was fantastic, with the girls expressing their enthusiasm and enquiring about the nearest club so that they can play out of school time.
“We had a great afternoon in fantastic weather and I think it was a real eye opener for the school, where rugby hasn’t really featured in the past. Staff were saying that girls they have never been able to engage in any other sport were really giving it a go, which is great to hear.
“The Redcar club supported the day really well and are now hoping to set up some girls rugby off the back of this and the All Schools programme that will run in September. All Schools is going to be a really exciting project for this school and the area.”