Wiltshire Publications

Difficult times for Rugby Club

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WITH the decision by the Rugby Football Union that,  due to the continuing Covid-19 pandemic, the return to competitive matches for community clubs will be on hold until at least January 2021, Westbury Rugby Club are really feeling the pinch.      

  The club report, Most junior clubs depend on match day bar takings as a major part of their income, but this has been denied since March of this year owing to no matches taking place. Another casualty is the planned anniversary dinner dance to celebrate 40 years since Matravers School teachers Jon Whittock and the late Mark Knott formed the club in 1980.

     “The directors and committee of the club have been working hard to secure finance to keep the club running.  Even though there is no match day rugby, several of the players have paid their annual membership upfront.  Also, vice presidents and some of the sponsors have helped by adding their memberships and advertising fees to help the club.

    “There is a lot of work still going on at the club, led by chairman, Gareth Vaughan.  Replacement training lights are being fitted.  The kitchen and changing rooms have been deep cleaned by members of the ladies’ section.  Work on the new toilets are ongoing, as are improvements to the electrical wiring system.  A new pitch is in the process of being set up.  Plans are being laid down to improve the main pitch drainage.  All this work is being done by volunteers from players, both male and female, supporters and sponsors, for which the club is eternally grateful.

   “The coaches and players are following the return to rugby guide as laid down by the RFU, which at this stage means that players can only take part in a total of 15 minutes of adapted contact activities, which entails no opposed lineouts, no scrum or maul practice at all and limited ruck practice.  Tackling has to be below the waist and one-on-one.  Tackle bags etc have to be sanitised after each player usage. Time is then given to improving ball handling skills.

    “The RFU have devised a new type of touch rugby called Ready 4 Rugby which allows teams of up to ten players to play non-contact rugby. It is hoped to play some of our neighbouring clubs at this type of game soon.

   “So, rugby in a new form is still going on at Knott Field with the ladies training on Wednesday evenings and the men training on Thursday evenings.  Both sessions start at 7.00pm.  New players are always welcome, you will need to fill in a rugby health screening form before each session. For further information please email the club: westburyrugbyclub@gmail.com for men; westburyladiesrfc@hotmail.com for ladies.

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