Welcome to our AGM and isn’t it great to see Union Park in such great condition on a sunny day. With this meeting being between you and burgers and bouncy castles, I won’t delay.
Our cricket players probably had the warmest and driest season for living memory. Their 2 Counties Cup came to an end against a strong Aberdeen Grammar side and they ended up 5th in the Recreational and Development League of the Strathmore and Perthshire Cricket Union with 2 wins, 6 losses and a percentage of 55. The cricket playing members have started to build a development plan and 5 coaches have completed their level 1 coaching course. James Colhoun, Dundee and Angus Cricket Development Officer has been supporting.
Our senior rugby team went out as Montrose for the first time in many years. They came second in Cally 4 behind a strong Dunfermline 2nd XV and gained promotion in their first year. Particularly pleasing was the style of rugby being played, aligned with our club blueprint – the Montrose way, and the number of players who have come through our junior development pathway. This was reflected in a very strong performance at Perth 7s yesterday.
On behalf of the club, I am delighted to announce that our squad of the year trophy will go to our 1st XV.
Our junior rugby section continues to thrive, with over 150 junior members and engagement with local primary and secondary schools as well as local community clubs.
Our minis have been hosting and visiting different clubs as well as our Sunday training. This is a great foundation for the club and thank you to all of the coaches and volunteers for successfully implementing the new law variations to provide a great learning environment for our players.
Our U13, U14, U16 and U18 took part in the Tier 4 Conference this year as well as friendlies against schools and other clubs. Numbers continue to build and our performances have been strong. Next year, they will be playing in the Scottish Rugby Lancer ( North/ Midlands ) Conference at all age groups and the Caledonia Cup.
In August, we will see the launch of our Rugby Achievement Programme at Montrose Academy. This cutting-edge programme has been developed between Scottish Rugby, the Club and the school and will offer curricular lessons around performance, nutrition, life skills and values.
A huge thank you goes to Caroline for all of her input and support around community engagement and development.
Scottish Rugby has given us the Bronze Club Sustainability Award. This was our target for this year and has also boosted our coffers by £5,000. Thank you to everyone who has helped to achieve this. Scottish Rugby also confirmed that we are 100% compliant with their Rugby Right programme – something we have done for 4 years running.
It has been great to see players, coaches and volunteers take part in wider activities beyond the club. This year, we have had representation in:
• Midlands North U15
• Midlands U16
• Midlands and Caledonia U17
• Caledonia and Scotland U18
We also have current and former members playing in National Leagues, BUCS University Super League and Scottish Touch.
Other development initiatives include the launch of our strength and conditioning programme, in partnership with Mission Fitness. Thank you to all of the coaches who attended the Level 1 S&C course to help facilitate this important initiative.
Our volunteer base is remarkable with over 40 volunteers. Some provide specific support for one-off or infrequent help and others appear to commit their life to the club!
Thank you to all of you and, if anyone would like to help – in any way – please let me or any of the committee know. It is your club and you are welcome to contribute.
Finally, I would like to say some thank yous. Firstly, thank you for taking time to be here today. We have a strong and vibrant club and this is down to you supporting our shared vision.
Thank you to the coaches, team managers, referees, game coaches, volunteers and supporters.
A big thank you to our sponsors and also those who go the extra mile for the club. Can I please thank Martin Ross for his support with facilities and our new gym? Also, thanks to John Macintosh for his help with the Clubhouse development as well as sourcing and fitting our new heating.
Two people that I would like to single out are Lesley and Susan. Lesley’s coordination of the minis and engagement with the Sport Hub has been first class. Also, Susan has taken the mantle of managing the junior finances as well as providing ‘unnoticed support. Thank you both.
While most people don’t get excited about Data Protection and GDPR, we are lucky that Russel does. His support in getting us aligned with this important legislation has been really appreciated.
Another key contributor to our club has been Jen Davies – the Rugby Child Protection Officer.
I am also pleased to introduce Glynis Paton who is our Business Development Manager and looking to support our engagement with local businesses.
Finally, thank you to our committee members. Your support and insight have been invaluable.