President's Message

President's Message

By Gary McPhail
19 May 2020
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Club update

President’s Update

To all members and their families

I hope that you and your families are all staying well and safe in this unprecedented time of lockdown and, like me, you will probably be missing the game of rugby and the activities around the club.

Since the lockdown your Committee have been holding regular online meetings and these have been useful in getting everyone together to discuss and plan Club business. With this in mind, I would like to give you an update on what has been happening since our last communication.

The leagues have all been decided and we, (either unfortunately or fortunately), have been relegated into Caledonia Midlands Division 2 which we believe at this time will be a league more suited to the development of our players.

I do not know when we will begin next season as this will be decided by the Scottish Government in conjunction with Scottish Rugby but as soon as this has been resolved then we will ensure that we are in a position to safely resume with club activities in whatever form is deemed necessary.

The good news on the playing front is that the coaching staff of Niall, Brian and Willie have agreed to stay on as has John Robertson (Team Manager).
Alex will continue as Youth Convenor and has some really positive plans for next season.

One thing I have noticed recently is that more people are out running and cycling. I would hope that, as a way to break the monotony of being in lockdown, some of our players are making use of this option as it will make training that bit easier when we do get back.

It had been our intention during the close season to do some work on our pitches. This included the possible repositioning of our 2nd XV pitch in order to actually play games on it as there will be more games scheduled between our youth teams and our ladies’ team. Unfortunately, the company we normally use for this is also on furlough. So again as soon as possible this work will begin. We have the budget for some of the work and are hoping that the SRU Hardship Fund will help.

The Annual General Meeting which was due to take place in May has been postponed and will be held in July/August if possible. There may be an opportunity to hold the AGM online and we are currently looking into the logistics of how best to format this if required.
The committee have all agreed to continue in the interim and the Office Bearers have also agreed to continue in their roles until the AGM.
The accounts will be ready for approval whenever the AGM occurs.

You will be aware that with no income coming in and bills still needing paid the club funds, although sound at present, will reduce month by month. However, we have been fortunate enough to successfully apply for a Government Grant which has taken the immediate pressure off slightly.
We fully appreciate that some of you may also be feeling the financial pinch and therefore your committee will propose at the AGM that we freeze the membership fees to that of last season and we will review gym memberships at the same time.

Our Club Facebook page is still running and local businesses may see an advantage of advertising their business on our pages. If you have any contacts please make this suggestion to them and contact Colin Jess who has done a really good job on this.
Sponsorship by companies wishing to support the club is still very much in demand so if you know of any please contact Jim Gove. We would not be in such a solid financial position were it not for Jim and Gary applying for funds and grants and of course for our existing sponsors and we would encourage you to use these local companies whenever possible.

These are all the key points I wanted to make at this time. If anyone has any other concerns please contact me directly at Hopefully we will be able to return to some form of rugby this year and in the meantime I would ask you all to be positive, stay healthy and take care of your family.

Best wishes
Graham Kerr
ARFC President

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