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A number of you have suggested that it would be helpful to receive a regular ‘Chairman’s Update’ on developments at Rosslyn Park. This is the first of a quarterly communication which I will send to all members. All feedback would be most welcome.
Firstly, I hope you are all having an enjoyable summer and are looking forward to the new season. One thing we can be certain of is that National League One will be more competitive than ever, particularly given the rumours abounding that more than one club might be promoted given a possible expansion of the Championship in response to the potential of no relegation from the Premiership at the end of the 2019/20 season. We hope to have more information on this at our Annual General Meeting, which this year takes place at 11am on September 21st.
I would like to congratulate Kieran Powers on his promotion to Director of 1st XV Rugby, along with John Mills who becomes Head Coach. Kieran will also be influencing and supporting the rugby programme across all of our sides, and in this respect I am delighted that our 2nd XV [The Rangers] will have a full programme of fixtures as we are participating in the ZOO League. The Rangers will be led by former players Lee Starling and Tony Paul.
Jordan Turner Hall & Andy Houston will continue on the great foundations they laid last season as Defence coach and Attach coach respectively. Steve Walsh, Ryan Keates and Leigh Groombridge continue to run the S&C department which has come on leaps and bounds in the last year.
Joe Coakley steps up as head physio for the 1st team with Pippa Rollitt moving to Head of medical for the club. We will be recognising Pippa’s fantastic contribution to the club at the AGM. Sam Nash joins the strong medical team to assist Joe for the season.
Kojo Jecty and Fergus Farrell continue as team managers after the partnership worked well last season.
We have retained virtually all of our squad from last season and have made some exciting signings I have summarised these at the end of this letter.
We have a small and highly committed team which, under Dom Shabo’s leadership, runs all aspects of the club on a day-to day basis, and there have been several changes to this team since the end of last season.
I wish to thank Karen Richards for all her years of work in the club office. Karen steps away from her role as Club House manager, but will continue to help with the mini and youth registration process. Cori Pinkus takes over from Karen as Club House manager and will also continue in her role along with running match day operations.
Andy Higgins, fresh from running a very successful National Schools 7s last year, continues in this role, and takes over as head of Bar Operations for the coming season. Andy has five years’ experience of running bars in Canary Wharf, and we hope you will enjoy the refreshed Ripley bar and new products available from September.
Lastly, Jodie Rockett has started in a new role for the club as Sponsorship Manager. Jodie comes with a wealth of experience from Dubai and Hong Kong, where she has been working on the World Series 7s tournament sponsorship in both countries.
One of our priorities is to make the Rock a more enjoyable experience for our members and supporters, and this season you will notice a number of changes including:
• The sides of the main stand will be changed to clear Perspex, providing better pitch viability.
• There will be a new and improved scoreboard kindly donated by the Prince Obolensky society.
• As touched upon earlier, the bar has had some improvements made to it, and there have been some general improvements in the club house toilets.
• At the far end of the ground, the area has been transformed into a new car park which will have shared access between ourselves and the Roehampton Club.
• The club website is being redeveloped over the summer and will launch in mid-September with a new look, better functionality, and a better user experience.
I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank Patrick Rea and Robert Fisher for their work with the Rosslyn Park Business club which was launched in April, and has since held three evenings, each session attracting over 20 people. The Rosslyn Park Business club takes place on the first Wednesday of each month and is held at the club. The Business club is open to all and the next evening is September the 4th. This really is an excellent business learning and networking opportunity, and I would encourage all members who have an interest in business to “give it a go”.
As you are all aware, one of our strategic objectives is to ensure that Rosslyn Park is financially stable and sustainable, whilst being in a position to repay our bondholders, fund a highly competitive 1st XV and give all of our sides the opportunity to perform at a high level. We are therefore very focused on expanding our revenues, and have introduced some new initiatives over the summer including a Corporate Membership category aimed at attracting businesses of all sizes to the Rock. This ranges from a Bronze membership offering at £1000 to Gold at £3500.
We are continuing to build on the great success of the Ripley membership last season and we’re pleased to say the uptake in Ripley members is going well. We now have 20 members, each of whom contribute 1,000 which goes directly towards our playing and coaching budget.
The club will also soon be launching Park Reunited, aimed at encouraging ex-players of the club to re-engage with us. The Park Reunited package will be announced later this month.
Every additional pound we generate goes towards strengthening the club, anything you can do to help us build our membership and sponsorship base (for example
And finially, it is shaping up to be another exciting season for the Club, and we hope to see you at our Pre-season fixtures against Rhondda (24th Aug) and Ealing Trailfinders (31st Aug). Along with these matches we have a competitive start to the season with three home matches for the 1st XV against Rotherham, newly promoted Canterbury, and local rivals Blackheath and a tough away fixture against last season’s 2nd placed Old Elthamians.
I do hope to see you on the touch line at in the next 2 months.
New Signings for the 2019/20 Season:
Kyle Traynor – Prop signed from Gloucester Rugby – Kyle has 8 Scotland caps and 150 + Premiership appearances
Sam Twomey – 2nd Row signed from London Irish – Sam has 30 + premiership appearances for Harlequins
James Freeman – Backrow signed from Exeter Chiefs – James captained Jersey for two seasons in the Championship and made 10 appearances for Exeter
Dave Lewis – Scrum Half signed from Harlequins – Dave has 180 + premiership appearances and England Saxons caps
Henry Cheeseman – Center signed from Harlequins – Henry has made 10+ appearances for Harlequins and played for Richmond in the Championship last season on loan
Craig Holland – Wing / Fullback signed from Chinnor – Craig was Nat 1’s top try scorer last season with 26 try’s and has also played for Cornish Pirates and London Scottish in the Championship
Ben Howard – Wing / Fullback signed from Old Elthamians – Ben has represented England 7s and played most of his career at Worcester Warriors before joining OE’s last season.
Nick Scott – Wing / Center signed from Richmond – Nick has played previously for London Welsh in the premiership
Josh Amadi – Wing / Center Signed from London Irish Wild Geese – Josh was names in the NCA top 48 last season.
Matt Edwards – Center Signed from Loughborough Students – Matt captained the students last season
James Brooks – Scrum / Fly Half signed from Esher – James is son of former Rosslyn Park player the late Tony Brooks
Jake Buckingham – Prop signed from Bath University
The London Floodlit Sevens sponsored by Deloitte takes place on the first Thursday in May. Matches kick off at 5pm. Find out more on the London Floodlit 7s website: www.londonfloodlitsevens.com
Since its beginning in 1975 the Rosslyn Park London Floodlit 7s tournament has been a great way to end a long 15s season. An evening of high class rugby including sides from the Premiership, Championship, national leagues and top level universities all competing against each other. In past years it’s not just been the team names but the players themselves that have attracted the crowds with the Premiership teams bringing along the likes of England’s Danny Care, Ugo Monye, Chris Robshaw, James Haskell, to name a few.
It’s a date circled on many 7s fans calendars each year, a chance to see some of the big clubs strutting their stuff on the 7s field, such as Harlequins, Saracens, Leicester, Bath and Wasps from the Aviva Premiership. The tournament has often featured not only up-and-coming Premiership players, but also well-known faces from both the Premiership and International field.
Find out more on the London Floodlit 7s website: http://www.londonfloodlitsevens.com/
We have teamed up with Caltrics to provide a free Rosslyn Park fixtures calendar, which can automatically be connected to the calendar on your phone/tablet/PC/MAC.
The fixtures in your calendar will be updated: you’ll know when and where the Park 1st XV are playing.
Just click on this link to sign-up to the App and get the Rosslyn Park Fixtures.
Also available in the App are the calendars for: the Autumn and Summer Internationals, Six Nations, Rugby Championship, RWC 2019 and other sport and non-sporting events.
The App has been sponsored by Bob Fisher.