Pitch plan and details for Sunday 27th September 2020

*updated Friday 25th September*

Following this week's announcements the great news is that rugby can continue as we have been for the past three weeks. Training is on this Sunday as normal: 9.15 to 10.30 for the minis (u6-u11 and inclusive) and 11.00 to 12.15 for the youth (u12 and above). Please make sure all parents pitch-side do their bit: remain socially-distanced (2m apart) and no groups of people greater than six.

Clubhouse Covid Regulations
We have worked hard with Merton Council to agree the following protocols for the clubhouse, please follow these rules to help ensure we can stay open and keep the rugby going for our kids.

• everyone aged 11 and above is required by law to wear a face mask in the clubhouse
• everyone entering the clubhouse (other than to use the toilet) must use the new NHS Covid app (so download it before Sunday perhaps) and scan the QR code on entering. If you are unable to do this then please ask a member of staff who will take your details
• the BBQ will operate as normal
• there will be a table outside the clubhouse folding doors for take-away coffee, tea, soft drinks, snacks and the bar. This will have an express coffee station on it that will be manned by WRFC staff, and if anyone wants a different coffee then please order at the table and a member of staff will go into the clubhouse and make it for you. Likewise for the bar. The queue for this service point will be marked out and people must adhere to the queueing system. It may make service a bit slower, so please bear with us. No-one will be able to order inside at the main bar or coffee bar
• there will be a strict one way system for those entering the clubhouse – in through the front door and out through the rear. This will help people avoid those in the queue for drinks. Please do not cut through the queue in between people – go round instead
• the number of people legally allowed to meet socially is six. It is critical people abide by this rule, in any setting, indoors and outdoors
• please do not congregate around the clubhouse during busy periods. If on the patios then please sit on a table, do not stand around
• kit sales will be on the lower patio and a queue marked out for this

Next Sunday (4 Oct) is Girls Rugby Try-out Day 1pm-2.30pm - all girls aged 9 to 13 welcome to come and try rugby out. Details here: http://wmrfc.co.uk/Girls+team

Our multi-sport holiday camps for kids aged 7 to 14 are now open for booking. These always sell-out quickly so do book your kids in early. Details and book here: https://www.wimbledoninthecommunity.com/book-a-camp/october2020

Here are the pitch plans for Sunday:

Every child attending training is required to have their attendance logged in this Sunday's Track & Trace form which can be filled in below.

Pitch plan for Sunday 20th September

*article updated 16 September 2020*

Two weeks in and the rugby is going very well indeed. With more than 450 kids last Sunday there were lots of smiles on show and some great rugby, too.

If you are new to the area or fancy trying us out just come and join our sessions. We are both the biggest and friendliest club in the area. Minis (under 6 to under 11s) start at 9.15; Youth (under 12 to under 18s plus the three girls' squads of U13, U15 and U18) start at 11am. More details on how to join here and the age group managers and coaches contact details are here: http://wmrfc.co.uk/contacts.

Big thanks to all the parents for their patience with parking during these times. Everyone has been incredibly cheerful, kind and patient and this makes the job of the parking marshalls so much easier.

See the pitch plans for Sunday here:

With new Covid legislation now in place we need to be very mindful of the Rule of 6. Rugby is a game founded on laws and whilst the kids are playing to the game's laws on the pitch we need parents to play their part and stick to the Covid laws off the pitch.

Specifically we need parents to remain socially-distanced in and around the BBQ area and remember that the clubhouse has specific Covid regulations of its own: a separate Track & Trace form that you are legally required to fill in and no groups of more than 6 neither inside or out.

Arrangements for training Sunday 13th September 2020

**updated 9 September and will be updated further**

Following the latest Government announcements today (9 Sept), Surrey Rugby have confirmed that we can continue with our rugby arrangements as they are. This is clearly great news!

Merton Council's Covid-team have asked that we re-iterate the need to socially distance on the touchlines and ensure any non-playing siblings do not run around/together or on equipment. Given the new tightened Covid-regulations we ask that all parents respect the 2m social distance rule and only bring non-playing siblings if absolutely necessary. We fully support the Council's work to help manage the Covid situation and thank you in advance for your support here.

We had a wonderful start to the season on Sunday (6th) with well-over 400 kids coming back to rugby. I think this might be the busiest start to the season of all time! Splitting Minis and Youth start times certainly helped give us space to adapt to Covid-related issues. We will finesse timings for youth before Sunday so keep a look at at your emails/What'sApp for news.

Rugby is back! The season starts for all Minis & Youth players (under 6 to under 18) on 6 September 2020

The great news...rugby is back!

We welcome all kids, regardless of experience or ability. Those new-to-rugby are particularly welcome. We will be operating full Covid-19-compliant training, featuring the new return-to-rugby-approved game: Ready4Rugby. Join us as training resumes on Sunday 6 September.

More info here: how to join and background about our club.

Mini groups (U6-U11 and Inclusive) will start at 9.15am and run to 10.30am.
Youth groups (U12 and above) will start at 11.00am and run to 12.15pm.

See the pitch plans for Sunday here.

Social distancing
Please note we will need parents to help with social distancing and discuss with the kids the requirements.
• The bar will be open and food will be on sale however please make Ruth’s life easier by not hanging around inside.
• The loos will be open however not the changing rooms at this stage.
• Parents need to stay pitch side to help with child management, loo breaks and any injuries/issues. It will keep the flow going for everyone and make the coaches' lives a little easier.

We all know the rules so please stick to them. As the Minis groups start early the Youth groups will need to allow more time to park further away or arrive only 15 minutes before training starts. Please take this into account and park sensibly. This week, the U11s are on parking duty.

Subs and keeping in touch
1. Please pay your subs! Everyone who was with us last year has been sent a reminder from the Game Management System (GMS). Please pay the subs straight away to help the club continue to prosper. More info here: http://wmrfc.co.uk/howtojoin
2. Please sign up to our club news email group: https://mailchi.mp/8c687b9049e7/wimbledonrfcemail

Wimbledon RFC head coach, Collin Osborne, on the challenges facing black coaches and inclusion in rugby union

The club's adult head coach - Collin Osborne, has had a long and illustrious career in rugby union. Prior to joining Wimbledon Rugby Club he ran Harlequins Academy. This summer he was interviewed by Sky Sports about his thoughts on getting more black coaches into rugby coaching.

As a club we are hugely proud of our diverse membership with kids coming to training from over 100 different schools throughout Merton, Wandsworth, Kingston and beyond. These varied backgrounds make our club a real positive force in our local community. Everyone's welcome at Wimbledon Rugby Club; the season restarts on Sunday 6th September, 2020.

You can also read about Collin in this piece from The Guardian.

Summer 2020 activities at WRFC

**updated 16 August 2020**

Our summer multi-sports camps have been a roaring success. The final batch of dates have been announced (see below).

Neil Sweeney, who heads up the Wimbledon RFC in the Community project and has been along to sessions throughout the past two seasons to help our coaching programme is running the following sessions... (if the embed below doesn't work you can book via this link: https://www.wimbledoninthecommunity.com/book-a-camp)

Please book early so we can make sure their days are as special as possible

Paul Goss (Youth Chair) & Richard Castle (Minis Chair)

May 2020: update from Wimbledon RFC, Coronavirus and our members

Dear friends... We are now into the third month of the national lockdown. Back in March as the severity of the situation came clear, we asked for those who could make a donation to the club, to help us pay the bills as all income suddenly dried up, to do so. We have been overwhelmed by the generosity of our players, parents and friends of the club and we have recently closed the GoFundMe campaign with nearly £35,000 raised to help sustain the club's future through these uncertain times. Thanks to each and every one of the 400+ people who donated.

To help with the fundraising efforts, over 80 families and players (and former First XV and England legend Nick Easter) sent in footage of how they were 'keeping the rugby going' during lockdown. The film, edited by u14's player Ben Castle, is below.

So what next? For minis and youth players we wouldn't normally be playing rugby until September anyway. We must hope that we get to start rugby then as normal (if we can restart rugby, the first day of the season would be Sunday 6th September). But we live in unprecedented times. We will of course play what rugby we can, when we can. In the meantime the club and grounds remain closed for rugby.

You can keep up with advice from England Rugby here: https://www.englandrugby.com/news/article/coronavirus-covid-19-community... and here: https://www.englandrugby.com/participation/running-your-club/coronavirus

Keep fit, keep healthy, keep safe

Wimbledon Rugby Football Club launches emergency fundraising campaign

Dear players, parents and friends

Today (March 29th) Wimbledon RFC has launched an emergency GoFundMe campaign to help sustain the club through the next few months as we have had to cease all playing and clubhouse activities due to the Coronavirus pandemic. From April to September we usually make the most of our facilities to generate income to support the ongoing running of our community club.

Wimbledon RFC is a very important place for our kids to enjoy their sport; over 500 children rely on the club. Along with thousands of rugby clubs up and down the country, the volunteer-run community game finds itself in crisis and ours sadly is no exception.

Bluntly, with no income over the coming months, we will not be able to pay our bills, hence this call out for donations.

The Club has already taken a number of drastic measures to cut its outgoings during the period of closure as well as making plans to access Government Grants. But we also need your financial support.

Be a hero: you can donate easily with just a couple of clicks

Our GoFundMe.com page is here.

How much are you looking for as a donation?

We are hoping to raise at least £30,000. A number of people have suggested amounts:

1. If you are lucky enough to be not unduly troubled financially by the current pandemic we would appreciate any donations over £500. We've already had one kind donation of £1,000
2. Perhaps donating the cost of your weekly commute (£42.40 or £51.90 depending on zone)? That would be a massive help
3. Any level of donation from a fiver upwards will help. £20 seems a popular amount
4. What would you have spent behind the bar at an end of season dinner or a Saturday night out?

We are very lucky as a club to have many parents volunteer to help run training, matches and events. To help ensure we can start the new season (whenever that might be) in a stable-ish financial footing, we need every parent to answer this call to alms.

With huge thanks in advance from all at the club.

Early end to the rugby season as a result of Coronavirus (Covid-19) at Wimbledon Rugby Club

The following update is from Meg Gardiner, Hon. Secretary of Wimbledon RFC

On behalf of Wimbledon RFC, we hope that all our players, coaches, supporters and friends are keeping safe during this time.

The news has now been delivered that the 19/20 rugby season has ended. Over the coming weeks, we will unpick what that means for all areas of the club and share this with you.

A number of you have reached out and asked how you can help the club during this time of uncertainty. The Executive Committee met (virtually) on Thursday night (19 March) and will continue to do so on a weekly basis. We will need our supporters to rally around us over the coming months and we are in the process of working out how your offers of help will be best received. I will update you in due course.

If you have any questions, please let me know: email secretary@wimbledonrfc.co.uk


Welcome to the Wimbledon Rugby Spring Minis Rugby Festival 2020

It'll be all go this Sunday as we welcome 900+ kids to Wimbledon Rugby Football Club for our minis rugby festival.

*This page was last updated at 11.40am on Sat 14th March with the fixture list*. No further updates are expected. See you all on Sunday!

Following Thursday's government update we have the following announcement regarding our festival:

The Wimbledon RFC Spring Minis Rugby Festival on 15 March 2020 will run as planned.

We ask that anyone with a new, persistent/continuous cough and/or a temperature of 37.8 degrees or above - ie those who have now been asked to self isolate for 7 days - not to attend. This is consistent with government advice.

We know that the government plans to extend such self-isolation requests to whole family groups (when there is one family member with these symptoms) in the near future. We ask that any family in this situation to stay away.

With today's new government advice, there are, as yet, no restrictions on holding sporting events/large gatherings. We have no further recommendations from the rugby governing bodies at this time. Should the government advice, or that from the RFU/Surrey RFU change before Sunday, we will update our position further.

Government advice on washing hands is key and we'd ask that parents ensure their kids wash their hands regularly. We have two locations where hands can be washed: the clubhouse and the pavilion in the middle of the pitches.

To minimise unnecessary physical contact, at the end of matches, we will ensure only 'three cheers' are exchanged, rather than handshakes.

A big welcome to the 95 teams playing this Sunday - by far the biggest festival we've ever put on.


In short, unless you are an early-arriver AND in a proper 4x4 (don't even try with low profile tyres), you won't be able to park near the club. Once the 4x4 parking is full all parking will be off-site as per the map below. A few permits have been issued for Inclusive Rugby players and visiting head coaches (only). If you have a blue badge there will also be parking at the club, please show yours to the marshalls at the junction of Copse Hill and Barham Road.

There will be parent volunteers in hi-viz to help make the parking as stress-free as possible. Please listen to any parking instructions you are given - and respect that everyone marshalling the parking are parent volunteers. Wimbledon RFC is situated in the middle of a residential area with some of the roads being private roads so if you are asked not to park somewhere, please listen. The same goes with cones, if you see a street with cones on, don't park there.

Anyone blocking access to homes or restricting ambulance access will be reported to the police.

If you need directions to Wimbledon Rugby Football Club click here

The programme for Sunday can be downloaded here and the fixtures for Sunday is here.

Here's the pitch plan - note: a larger copy of the pitch plan is in the programme, downloadable above.

Two messages from Sophie Castle, Wimbledon's child protection officer

(1) Remember, everyone (parents, coaches and players alike) must observe the RFU rules and spirit of play...namely

1. Support positively and applaud good play (even if it's not your team!)
2. Respect officials and opposition players
3. Remember that children are playing to have fun
4. Behave as good role models on the touchline
5. Congratulate the opposition and make their supporters welcome.

(2) Coronavirus/Covid-19

We have been in contact with the RFU and they are not issuing specific guidance in relation to the Coronavirus at this stage. The reason they state is that there is nothing to add above and beyond the detailed advice issued by the government and this is already in the public domain and well-known.

Advice to the public - https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ and https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-pub...

Further advice on what we can all do to prevent the spread of infection: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-educational-setti...

Bad behaviour by players will not be tolerated
The London Society of Rugby Football Union Referees has announced a zero-tolerance approach to backchat and appealing from players during matches. This approach is wholly endorsed by Wimbledon RFC and all players should expect to be warned and then penalised for instances of arm waiving and backchat/challenging refereeing decisions during games.

Bad behaviour by parents will not be tolerated. This from Brian Moore
[Children] do not always recognise a general expression of disappointment and believe it is directed at them. Head shaking, rolling of the eyes, looking away, kicking the ground – any of these can discourage children, and exhortations like “come on” and “sort it out” are as practically useless from the touchline as they are on the pitch. Full article is here

Hope you enjoy the festival and remember TREDS

Teamwork • Respect • Enjoyment • Discipline • Sportsmanship

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