Helensburgh Rewarded For Successful Community, Schools And League Rugby

RBS West Regional League Division 2 side, Helensburgh, have been named RBS Club of the Month for September.

The club were awarded the £1000 cash prize for their development within the youth game, the impact it’s had in the surrounding community and for a successful winning streak for both their first and second XV in September.

RBS West Regional League Division 2 side, Helensburgh, have been named RBS Club of the Month for September.

The club were awarded the £1000 cash prize for their development within the youth game, the impact it’s had in the surrounding community and for a successful winning streak for both their first and second XV in September.

Helensburgh RFC president, Jon Simmons, said: “Winning the RBS Club of the Month Award means a great deal to Helensburgh Rugby Club. I see it as a reward for all the hard work that our unpaid volunteers put into the club at all levels and the fantastic commitment from the coaches and players in all our teams.

“This year we have a more joined-up approach to our rugby. From our minis who in conjunction with the area's Active Schools Co-ordinator have expanded to include P1's for the first time; through our Lomond / Helensburgh joint venture with Lomond School, now in its second year, which offers age grade rugby to all secondary pupils in the area; up to our senior teams who have started the season with a flying start.

“In addition to this, local police have commended the efforts of the club to grow the game in the community. They have seen a reduction in traditional tensions between local schools and have attributed this to the pupils playing rugby together, as a joint team.

“For a small club with a limited catchment area we regularly punch above our weight and hope that we continue to do so.
 
“Going forward we hope to continue the good work, increasing numbers at all levels providing good quality coaching across the board.

“Personally I would like to forge stronger relationships with other clubs in the area, such as Loch Lomond and Mid-Argyll so we can help each other. As our young players often lose out on representative opportunities I would also like to push for creating the same opportunities for them that the bigger Glasgow clubs have.”

Scottish Rugby’s head of community rugby, Colin Thomson, added: “It’s great to see a club like Helensburgh being nominated for and receiving the September RBS Club of the Month Award.

“Their work both on and off the park makes them a true community club and Scottish Rugby wishes them every success for the future.”

The club is the conduit for a quartet leading rugby development in the area. Helensburgh jointly fund a development officer, Sean McNee, with Clydebank; have a modern apprentice, Kane Greggain; their recently appointed first XV coach, Bill McDonald is a P.E. teacher at the town’s Hermitage Academy and they maintain close links with the active schools co-ordinator, Martin Caldwell.

Between them they are able to boast a comprehensive community programme across all the secondary and primary schools in the surrounding area and as a result the club are able to field an amalgamated youth team at all levels with Lomond School, as well as having over 100 children (between P3 and P7) taking part in weekly rugby sessions.

Between the first and second XV Helensburgh won five matches out of five during September and they currently sit in third and first in their respective leagues. Helensburgh first XV are third in RBS West Regional Division 2 beating Cambuslang (21-19), Lenzie (25-0) and Clydebank (21-19) throughout September, while the seconds top RBS Reserve West Pod A with wins over Strathendrick 2XV (24-0) and Paisley 2XV (34-14)

These victories have been supplemented in the Brewin Dolphin Schools Cup Plate competition, where the Helensburgh / Lomond School under-18 side won their round 1 fixture against Jordanhill School, 26-19.

On the discipline front the club only recieved two yellow cards during September.

Peter McCarthy, Managing Director RBS Scotland, Branch Banking, said: “The Club of the Month award is designed to celebrate success based on performance, discipline and development.

“I would like to congratulate Helensburgh on winning the first RBS Club of the Month award of the season. It really is a great achievement and they are worthy winners.

RBS understand that rugby is at the heart of communities across Scotland and recognise the difference that the game can make. As a result, we have developed the RBS Rugby Club support programme to help clubs and the people who are so passionate about their success.

“The programme offers more than simply financial support. It is about helping clubs become sustainable for the long-term.”
As RBS Club of the Month winners, Helensburgh will receive a cheque for £1,000 and ten invites to the annual Scottish Rugby Club Awards Dinner at Murrayfield where they will be in with a chance of winning the prestigious RBS Club of the Season award. The dinner will take place on Friday 25 May, with details on attending becoming available soon.

They will also receive an RBS Film crew for the day to produce a 5 to10 minute film celebrating the club’s success.

David Sterry, Aaron Sterry and Terry Smith receive the September RBS Club of the Month Award