Club Update- June 2021

I trust you are all well and well on the way to being a fully qualified COVID vaccination recipient. 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 is still no announced starting date although the strong whispers are heading for September 4th. By then, 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. We are expecting to know very soon what format rugby will take next season. There is still much debate as to whether we have a usual season or whether adult men’s rugby will be regionalised. The Ladies team has little choice here as they are the only local team so, for competition, they will have to head north to Edinburgh and Fife for games.

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 appreciate their sentiments with regard to their experience over the lockdown period. There are another 2 recordings to come over the next couple of months.

All playing sections have returned to training under Government and SRU guidance. At the moment over 18s cannot be engaged in contact but there is an opportunity fairly soon for that to change. Brian Macfarlane, who is our COVID officer, has been keeping us on the correct pathway to recovery of rugby. Murray Hastie, our Development Officer, has been working hard to get the youngsters back training at Youth level. All of the Cougars were given an Easter Egg a few weeks ago and they keep coming back. This just shows that bribery has its place!

The upgrade of the Clubrooms continues apace and the kitchen has been gutted as we received a generous grant to upgrade this area. Work has already started with a finishing date in mid-July forecast. 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 a couple of afternoon teas planned. The first one will be passed by the time you read this but the second is due on Friday 18th June. The purpose is just to get members used to coming back to the Club and have a chat over a cup of tea.

The end of July has 2 dates 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 are holding a ‘Generation Day’ which hopefully will kick-start the return to Poynder for players, members from all areas of the Club. More details are to follow on this one.

We are losing our Child Protection Officer, Neil Woodcock, who has done a magnificent job in this role since 2013. He will, however, shadow his successor and he is still going to be involved with the running of the Youth programme in a coaching capacity. This is a vital job at any club. We must ensure Kelso RFC is a safe environment for youngsters to come and train and play.