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Pitchero Club

The official New Milton & District RFC app

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History

Pre 1927 records are very sketchy but from one Vice President, Major Steven Elvery it has been confirmed that until 1963 the Club played their rugby at Barrs Avenue, using the Station Hotel as their H.Q. The playing strength of the Club at that time was first XV and sometimes a 2nd XV and the occasional 3rd team primarily made up of any one who could be dragged out of the pub on a Saturday lunch time by a particular member of the Club, playing fixtures as far away as Bridport, Taunton, and Bridgewater in the west to Chichester in the east. The teams played in white shirts which did not change until the 70's. At this stage in the Club's history the teams played for enjoyment and the achievement of playing senior Hants and Dorset 1st XV's. The promotion to play the oppositions 1st XV only came after several seasons of beating their 2nd XV's.

This all changed with the introduction of the Leagues. The grounds at Barrs Avenue were sold for development and the Rugby Club had to find a new home. The Borough of Lymington as it was then created two rugby pitches at Ashley Sports Ground but these were purely for playing. Changing facilities were sparse and ranged from changing and using tin baths in a building behind the Station Hotel, to using the old Boy's Club in Old Milton Road, when we went up market and were able to use the showers. Teas at this time were sandwiches in the building behind the Station Hotel, the Boy's Club and The Woodpecker (now known as the Oak and Yaffle) in Ashley Common Road.

In the late 1960's the Rugby Club and Cricket Club, who played, changed and used the pavilion facilities at Ashley joined forces and formed the New Milton Sports Club. Both Club's worked very hard to raise fund to improve the facilities in the pavilion and the Council had refurbished the changing facilities. Years of saving and hard work by a ex Vice President John McQuillan saw the pavilion take shape and in August 1971, Mrs. Iris Nedderman, the Mayor of the Borough of Lymington officially opened the new Clubhouse. It was later that year that the Club changed to wearing green shirts. In 1977 the "Godfathers", Mike Evans, Russ Jones and Robin Jackson started the Mini Rugby Section for the son's of players who watched their fathers on the touch line most Saturdays and any of their friends. It was never dreamt that the mini section would increase to the extent it has to day. In the early 1980's the Merit Tables were, introduced. The Club has always been keen on Club Tours in 1966 to Guernsey and the biggest adventure of all times was the first real overseas tour in 1971 to France. The club continues to regulalrly attract touring teams from all over the country due to its warm welcome and ideal position on the south of the New Forest near to both Bournemouth and Southampton.

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