One Club For Everyone Since 1861
In our 159 year history Richmond Rugby Club has experienced victory and defeat and treated both with the same cheerful optimism. We have enjoyed our triumphs to the full and, after our setbacks, Richmond - the second oldest open rugby club in the world, has always risen above them, becoming stronger and more united in the process.
We are a true community club with a thriving mini and youth section (600+ players), one students/U21 XV/colts team, two senior women’s teams, five senior men’s teams and one veteran's team (the Heavies).
Since 1861 we have embraced our ‘One Club’ ethos and spirit and remained an open rugby club for everyone.
Supporting Our Community
Our Community is hugely important to us.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit and the country was put into “lock down”, Richmond Rugby were aware that it would be the poorest and most vulnerable in our community who would be most at risk of not being able to support themselves.
With schools having to shut as well as most businesses and sport clubs, we started planning how we could help our local community in these unprecedented times.
Throughout lock down we worked exceptionally hard to be there for our Richmond Family and our local region by providing extensive support for those in need across our Borough. Our Community Department and our wonderful team of 50+ volunteers were outstanding, displaying the true Richmond spirit and determination to work through any challenge together as one club.
From the start of lock down our Community Team were at the forefront of supporting our club family. They helped members and supporters with their grocery orders, picking up essential items such as medicine and even walking their dogs.
Food and Second-Hand Tech Collection Points
As the months progressed and lock down slowly eased, we joined forces with AFC Wimbledon's 'Dons Local Action Group' to ensure thousands of vulnerable residents across our community received essential goods and support. Initially we set up a food and second-hand tech collection point every Saturday at the Richmond Athletic Ground. The food/tech would be collected at the club and then delivered to those most at need throughout SW London. Our estimates are that during this period we collected nearly 30 pieces of second hand tech such as laptops and tablets, baby items, second hand toys, cots, as well as nappies and baby toiletries. We also believe we collected enough food at the club to potentially feed 25/30 families per week.
From late May, we expanded our relationship with the 'Dons Local Action Group' by running a daily food drop-off point outside Tesco Extra in Twickenham. Our club volunteers were at the store between 8am-5pm from Monday-Saturday and 11am-5pm on Sundays. The food items we collected included non-perishables, tinned meat, tinned vegetables, tinned fruit, rice, pasta sauces and cereals. More than 50 people from the club and the local area helped out, including Chairman John Heaton, President Chris Mills, Director of Rugby Steve Hill and Head Physio Michelle Cuthbert.
Summer Meals Initiative
On Wednesday 1st July we launched our ground-breaking Richmond Rugby 'Summer Meals Initiative' - to supply local school children in need with a daily nutritional meal over the summer school holidays. We spoke to a number of our club partner schools and together recognised the need for vulnerable children to continue to receive a nutritional cooked meal throughout the summer months for positive physical and mental wellbeing.
From mid-July until schools return in September, our catering team at the Athletic Ground will work cook daily meals, Monday to Friday, for up to 40 local school children who have been identified throughout our community. This process has been proudly supported by our club partner schools, in particular Grey Court School, with the help and assistance from the Ham Youth Club Richmond. Learn more by clicking here.
Why We Now Need Your Support
At the end of the 2019/20 season our main club sponsor Gallagher stood down after six seasons. Coupled with the COVID-19 outbreak, the club now finds itself without a main sponsor for the coming season and facing a significant shortfall.
We are hugely thankful to have the continued support of nearly 20 club partners for our return to the Men’s Championship next season, but we reluctantly now feel inclined to approach our membership, our supporters and the wider community to support our #OneClub crowdfunding campaign and help raise additional funds for the good of the entire club.
It has always been our stated desire to strive to be the best possible community rugby club and we hope that your support will help us remain at the forefront of the grass-roots game. This is essentially an initiative to support all sections of the club and help meet the sizeable costs of maintaining our facilities in these very challenging times, where our income has been severely impacted due to the loss of several home games at the end of last season and the inevitable loss of revenue from games in the coming season.
How Will We Spend The Money Raised?
Your support will help our club in the following ways:
- Help fill the gap in revenue following the departure of our main club sponsor 'Gallagher' after six years.
- Help support the loss of match-day income. Due to COVID-19 our final three men’s home matches in 2019/20 were cancelled, as were our final three women’s home matches. We are also anticipating our home fixtures will be impacted in 2020/21, at least in the short term with crowd numbers and match-day hospitality to be restricted.
- Help support the purchase of essential kit and rugby equipment for all sections of our club (such as rugby balls which are not cheap!).
- Help provide appropriate medical support for all Richmond players.
- Help fund the Richmond mini/youth section with essential coaches, managers and support staff. As well funding sufficient mini/youth equipment.
- Help maintain all of our pitches throughout the summer months and into the winter.
- Help maintain our changing rooms and toilet facilities.
- Help maintain our social facilities, such as our Members Bar and Sports Bar.
- Help implement the required safety measures for a safe return to rugby from COVID-19 for all club players, coaches, staff, volunteers, members and supporters.
Thanking The NHS And Key Workers
As mentioned above, all funds raised from this campaign will go directly towards the club and ground costs, but as part of this campaign we feel it is also very appropriate to honour the NHS and the key workers who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic, with a simple message of thanks which will be placed on the front of the Men’s First XV shirts for the entire 2020/21 season.
Please see the shirt design below....
From the bottom of our big Richmond Hearts....Thank you for your incredible generosity and support. We look forward to welcoming everyone back to the Athletic Ground as soon as possible!
Richmond Rugby would like to say a huge thank you to Tipi Coffee Co., Jesse Liston, Dante Kim Photography and Mel Deane for donating a reward to support our crowdfunding efforts. Please show them your support by visiting their website and social media channels below!
If you would like to donate a reward to support our #OneClub campaign please contact Tom on email@example.com