Club Update- July 2021

I trust you are all well and well on the way to being a fully qualified COVID vaccination recipient. You will then be able to travel the world! Certainly, Iceland and South Georgia are options for you! Springwood Hall has certainly been a busy place over the past few weeks. All of this has made things more likely that we will get some form of rugby in the foreseeable future. There has been a starting date announced of September 4th with Kelso playing National Leagues ie Inverness, Ayr, Dundee trips for us. Promotion and relegation will also come into play provided 65% of the total number of games possible have been played. Every club will not have to play the same number of games but that figure averages out at 15 games each in our league. The SRU are allowing for spikes and games being cancelled. Rearranged games might be possible depending when in the season spikes occur. By September 4th, hopefully, the Club will have participated in Peebles, Hawick and Gala Sevens as well as staging our own John Laing Sevens for Second team players on Friday 20th August. A set of fixtures for warm up games has been arranged starting in early August.

The really good news, however, is that Kelso Ladies have been invited to take part in National League Division 1 as a result of finishing second in their last completed league campaign. It will mean some early starts and long distance travel but they are keen to take this opportunity.

Hopefully, you have been able to access the video of the Mental Health and Wellbeing project in which the Club is engaged jointly with SBC and the NHS Joint Health Improvement team and Breathing Space. The interviews were filmed at Poynder a couple of weeks ago and the ‘stars’ of stage, screen and video did very well. We now have a team looking after the wellbeing of players and members with Brian McFarlane as COVID officer, Dr Robert Cutting as mental Health Advisor and, with the resignation of Neil Woodcock as Child Protection Officer after 8 years, our new CPOs are Alexa Richardson and Robin Carruthers Thanks go to Neil for his hard work over that time. He is not lost to the Club as he is taking a coaching role with the Youth teams and is mentoring the 2 new CPO appointees. We must ensure Kelso RFC is a safe environment for youngsters to come and train and play.


Training for the Seniors should now be about to kick in 2 times per week. The Ladies are still training. The Cougars and Youth/ School teams are going on holiday until August although Murray Hastie has organised Summer camps for the youngsters. The schedule is as follows:


Summer camp

Monday 26th July to Wednesday 28th July (9am to 3pm)

P1 to P7 Boys and Girls

Cost: £50 for all 3 days or £20 per day. Early drop off available from 8:30 and late pick up from 3:30 for £5 per day.

Skills camp:

Thursday 29th July and Friday 30th July (9am to 3pm )

S1 to S4 Girls and Boys

Cost: £30 for two days or £20 per day.

**Breakfast Club from 8:30am-9am**

For more information and to book a place on the camp, please, contact Murray Hastie, Kelso RFC Youth Development Officer at ydo@kelsorfc.co.uk

The upgrade of the Clubrooms continues apace and the kitchen has just about been refurbished as we received a generous grant to upgrade this area. Work has gone well with some local tradesmen linked to the Club putting in some big shifts. Our thanks to Glyn Hobkirk, Ian Anderson and Susan McKenzie for their work on this project.

As part of our return to Poynder, we have had a couple of afternoon teas. Both were well attended and in line with social distancing and setting tables for the correct number according to numbers of people and number of households. We have also planned to have the downstairs bar open with the British Lions v Japan on TVs around the Hall.


The end of July has a date for your diary. We are hosting a Sponsors’ Evening on Friday 30th July as a means of thanking all of those kind sponsors who have stuck by us over a season without rugby. On Saturday 31st July we were planning to hold a ‘Generation Day’ which hopefully would have kick-started the return to Poynder for players, and members from all areas of the Club. With the current lockdown situation, however, this is looking unlikely due to us being restricted numbers wise. .

The date by which members had to apply for tickets for the Autumn Internationals has now passed but you can still apply for the Home 6 Nations games (England and France). There is information on the Club website. It was also on the Club’s Facebook page but if you are struggling I have a few application forms run off but it is up to you to progress this one yourself. I am not to know who wants tickets. The end of September is the deadline for this one. I know nothing about the 6 Nations away games as yet but I do believe some optimists have booked flights etc to Rome.


So we have the Lions to look forward to with all of the games on SKY. I am not sure about other test matches being televised eg Scotland v Georgia and Romania. No doubt, they will be on some obscure channel where you have to sign your life away to access the stations !


We are still in the process of getting the clubrooms up to standard to fit in with new safety regulations and we have opened up for Community use with Live Borders using the Downstairs hall and also Weight Watchers and Border Links have also returned. We have altered our operating plan for the running of the bar and have amended the license accordingly. We may get some of the other users back on board through time.


The Committee has not just been sitting around as there are several sub-groups working on various topics such as an updated Business Plan, improving facilities in the kitchen, keeping the Constitution up to speed and, of course, working towards the return to playing rugby.


We are continually grateful to the sponsors who have stayed on board with us. We know times are hard but your support means a lot to us. Sponsors have responded by sponsoring players, taking pitch side advertising and getting their firm’s name on the playing or casual kit and there is a new venture with several local firms putting up a smaller advertising board on the side of the stand as you enter the clubrooms. We have got this figure up to 16 sponsors now.


The very observant of you will have noticed the notice at the end of Poynder Place just over the wall from where the phone box was in the Bowling Club. Seriously posh and thanks go to Dave Howieson from D H Design & Print on the design and the Bowling Club for letting us put up the sign. The posts are up but there is something different about them! The pitch is looking wonderfully well despite the shortage of rain. Angus Roberts is looking after the ground for us and is making a good job.


Zoom meetings continue although they are not the best way to run the Club. The plan is to have the Annual General Meeting on Thursday 8th July. By then we might get to hold it face to face. We shall let you know about that one. There are a couple of changes to the Constitution being proposed and, subject to approval at the AGM, Neil Hastie will become Vice-President.


But the news you have all been waiting for with regard to my granddaughters in Elgin. We made it at the end of May and they still recognised us. I never once heard them say ‘Mummy, who is this old couple who are staying in the house?’.


Stay safe and we hope to see you soon!


Norman Anderson


#OneClub #OneCommunity