Whitby Rugby Club History
On the 24th September 1951 a meeting took place at Whitby police station and since that day the rugby club at Whitby has had an amazing amount of people through it. All of these amazing people have brought so much to the rugby club from skills and attributes on the pitch, to supporting the teams pitch side at all ages or working in the clubhouse. From 1951, 70 years ago the rugby family was established. At Whitby nearly all the volunteers, players and members stay committed to the club for long periods of times. The venue has always been a real community hub and has welcomed everyone. Most of the players at Whitby are second or third or even fourth generations. Whitby has hosted teams, tournaments, been on tours and promoted the enjoyment of the sport for all ages over the last 70 years and long for this to continue. The club house that is in use today was opened in 1971 and since that day has created lots of amazing unforgettable memories that people old and young in and out of the rugby community still talk about to this day.
What does Whitby Rugby Club do?
Whitby rugby club is a rugby club located on White Leys road in Whitby and is the heart of the community. The club runs rugby teams and these are of junior and senior levels and welcomes everyone. The rugby club and its teams are run by volunteers who are sometimes seen and sometimes not seen but work very hard behind the scenes. The rugby club has two senior men teams and in the junior rugby section there is 100 players from the age of 4 to 17. The club is used for other occasions other than rugby, these are events are family fun days, annual firework display (the largest in Whitby), christenings, weddings, funerals, camping events, commercial hiring and festivals. As well as normal day to day up keep, once a year the club operates a maintenance and club spruce up, this is run by volunteers who aim to make the club the best it can be.
Whitby has been successful over the years in rugby and have had players go through the teams leading to international games. These players are: Emma Garbutt (nee Scourfield) who played for England Ladies 1993-1997. Jamie Noon, Jamie went on to play for Newcastle Falcons after Whitby. He played for Newcastle Falcons for 10 years, Played for England at full international level and scored a hat trick against Scotland at Twickenham. Whitby also had Lee Johnston playing youth rugby and senior rugby, who went on to be a Great Britain Olympic Bobsledder.
How COVID -19 has impacted upon Whitby rugby club.
Firstly we would like to thank all our supporters, players (of all age groups) and members of the community for understanding and being there for the rugby club as and when restrictions have allowed and hopefully when they are lifted, we can return to the great rugby family that was there before all of COVID -19. The impact of COVID -19 has been devastating on peoples lives and mental health. Due to the current situation all of the above events and more have had to stop and this has created a large loss in income. Having the social side of the community club, supporters, players and the hosting of events it has led to people missing out on a chance to catch up with friends and family, presentation nights or celebrate the huge things in life such as weddings and christenings. We have recorded a loss in membership renewals. Memberships account for a large part of the clubs income. Even though the rugby club has received some financial help from the government this only goes a short way of how the club would of normally been run and earned. Local businesses help support events for our members and the community and they help us so we help them in advertising via social media or within the club, sometimes we offer free booking for events or invite sponsors down to the club for match fixtures. Due to the pandemic the majority of the bookings, events advertising and sponsors have not been able to go ahead. We really want to ensure that the rugby club can carry on offering the rugby family and best rugby and community experience to everyone. With it being our 70th year we need to generate much needed funds to help the club through this pandemic. Lots of hard work and effort is carried out mainly by volunteers and we want to be able to continue to offer the same level of service and enjoyment of our club. In order to do so we need to receive the much needed funds to allow this for the past, present and future generations of users we have or will have at the community club.
Whitby Rugby Club in COVID 19 times
Due to rugby being a contact sport the COVID 19 pandemic has caused rugby to be played in an adaptive manner. This has created lots of hurdles to be jumped through and different ways, methods of training and development. Some of the training has been on social media platforms for some of the players and in the junior section this has led to increased participation from other family members at home to have a go who wouldn't or never normally have had a go at the sport. Due to no fixtures and people shielding it has been more challenging to retain players. Recruitment has been very difficult because of the COVID measures and the unknowing of when and if the next lock down may come in. Outside of the rugby club, members have been assisting on a regular basis with assistance of the COVID 19 vaccine program. The rugby family has been able to carry on with social media and using it as platform to help families in need during this pandemic.
How your money will be spent:
The club house roof has developed lots of leaks over the last few years and sadly we have not had the funds to replace it, so temporary works have had to be undertaken. The inside of the clubhouse has been modernised and the roof has started to leak into this. Now the roof has got to the point where it will need replacing very soon in the future. So a large amount of the money will be going towards the new roof.
The front access are manual doors which need to be pulled or pushed via a handle. We are wanting to change these doors to to be a more disabled friendly access for people in wheelchairs to access the community clubhouse for rugby or events. We are wanting to install push buttons with automatic door openers.
Changing room fixings such as taps, toilet handles and lights which are all now in poor condition and need changing to provide the facilities required for the use of changing rooms for home and away teams and other users of the changing rooms. Changing the lighting to more energy efficient lighting will help reduce costs on utility bills, moving the rugby club more to becoming a green energy club.
Parking facilities can only cater for a dozen vehicles before parking on muddy, unsuitable grassed area. So in the future aim to either place hardcore or hopefully tarmac in the area and this will allow for disabled users to park closer to the entrance as car park spaces will be more readily available.
Recruitment and retaining of all players in all ages new and present, this will be a huge area of work for the rugby club going forward in this pandemic. We would aim to use some of your money towards the cost of recruitment campaigns (such as getting girls rugby teams again) around the town and surrounding villages for young players and senior players. Some of the money would help families who are worse off or become worse off because of the pandemic. Some of the cost of membership fees could be covered ensuring that everyone gets a chance to play the great sport of rugby at Whitby and learning the RFU core values of teamwork, discipline, enjoyment, sportsmanship and respect.
To say a huge thank you for donating we have and are working with a few local sponsors, friends and partnerships to offer the chance of levels of rewards for your donations. Please note you don't have to claim a reward and can just donate. New rewards will be added on at any time so please keep an eye out for some great rewards.
How you can help
Firstly if you have got to this point of the page a huge thank you for taking the time to read all the above and we hope at this point you wish to donate to these worthy causes. The crowdfunding aim is very much the same as our aspect of rugby family, No matter how small a donation you can make or what small or large part you play in the rugby club, we will always welcome you a part of our rugby family. Please help and get involved by making a donation and supporting us to continue with the rugby family we have at Whitby rugby club, in doing so you are helping and rebuilding the community club and securing it's future. Thank you for taking the time to donate Whitby Rugby Club.