I hope that you are keeping well and coping with the lockdown. If you are old enough, you will have had the vaccine, which is great news. For the rest of us, patience and observance of the rules will be rewarded in due course. Given that there is still a way to go, I thought it would be useful to put you in the picture about Club matters.
First, I must applaud the marvellous efforts being made by our coaches, team managers and others to keep us all fit, improve our skills and generally remind us of the fun to be had with rugby. Some of this has been organised centrally by, for example, DoR Andy Arter and Head Coach Ben Wills. Other activities are being led by team managers, assistant coaches and general members. Well done to all involved, you’re doing a great job in keeping us engaged and breaking the tedium of lockdown.
Next, I can reassure you that the Club’s finances are being well managed and that we are financially sound. Our Treasurer Josh Nicol has done a fine job in controlling the money and accessing government support, through furlough payments for our staff and hospitality grants. The Exec has ensured that we have pared back costs wherever possible and, most importantly, the vast majority of members who pay their subs monthly have continued to pay.
The result is that we have some cash to invest in well-overdue improvements, with the first project being the construction of a borehole, to tap our own water supply. Whilst not obviously exciting to the average player, in fact this has the potential for a double win. A borehole will reduce the hefty sum we currently spend on watering the grounds, whilst enabling us to irrigate more effectively. The result should be a better standard of pitches and greater returns from the annual maintenance and re-seeding programme.
There are other site improvements under consideration, so rest assured, your membership money is being invested wisely.
Finally, we are looking ahead to a time when the pandemic is under control and rugby activity is allowed to resume. Full 15-a-side looks unlikely for the rest of this season, so instead we are planning a touch rugby tournament for late spring/early summer. This will be designed to involve members from 15 years old, up to any age and any level of rugby ability. We are also looking at holding a club fun day, which will be a great opportunity to re-open the facilities, get adults and youngsters back to the club and remind everyone what a great rugby family Reading RFC is.
Look after yourselves – and watch this space!