09/09/22 | General

The Beechwood Briefing Saturday 10th September 2022

Author: Neil Kelly


President’s welcome to the 2022/23 season

Dear Members, Guests, Gentlemen, and the Ladies of Lymm,

On behalf of all the members of Lymm RFC and our wider community we send our deepest condolences to the Royal Family following the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II – a life dedicated to service of others.  Despite the recency her passing, I am pleased the RFU has allowed games to be played and as President of the club it gives me pleasure to welcome you back to Beechwood for what I am sure is set to be an exciting season both on, and off the field.

Today we welcome our old friends from Rossendale, who started the season with a tremendous 87 point win against Kirkby Lonsdale last weekend.  With our own comfortable 10-47 win at  Northwich today’s game looks like it will give a clear indication of each team’s respective strengths in the continuation of the close fought games that inevitably occur between us.

With any new season comes the inevitable changes of structures and personnel, and this season is no different. In the first instance the RFU have made the decision to restructure the national leagues primarily to reduce travelling costs. Regrettably this has meant the loss of some of our longstanding and enjoyable away trips to the likes of Alnwick and Sandal, however it does give us the chance to entertain some ‘mouth-watering local derbies’ as we reunite with Stockport, Manchester and Sandbach. If the standard of leagues is to continually improve, then promotion and relegation will have to play their part, and as such it is inevitable over time that travel and ambition are linked. However, I do not feel that the current restructure has significantly changed the standard of rugby we will be playing and as such I am sure we are in for the continued exciting ‘brand of Rugby’ that ‘Fletch’ and his team have consistently produced for the last several seasons.  There have also been a few changes to the playing personnel brought about by retirements and a change in both educational and working locations. In some cases, this has worked in our favour as several ‘blooded’ first team players return from university and focus on establishing a regular place in the squad.

Off the field, it is becoming clear that an increased workload is being placed on our volunteer infrastructure, as the need to fill specialist positions to meet the changing demands that our ever-increasing litigious society continues to place on us. Key skill areas in health and safety, medical and general compliance are seeing increasing demands that must be met to ensure that we have a safe and well-run club.

Whilst remaining an amateur club, from a playing perspective, everyone wants our players to play at the highest standard possible, whilst not changing our core values and culture. These are areas that will always be challenging and inevitably will lead to increased cost particularly to the playing budget. If you feel you can help or contribute some of your professional skills in any of these or other areas, please let me or any member of the Board or Executive know, and you will be welcomed with open arms.

The Board and Executive team continue to press on with our fundraising that will enable the development of the new clubhouse to continue at pace, but it is fair to say that raising funds continues to be a clear priority as the Board remains committed to ensuring that the project can be delivered with a manageable level of debt. More details of the development plans will follow in due course. As part of these efforts and as we continue to promote our membership benefits into the Lymm community and beyond, we shall be improving the match day hospitality experience for members and sponsors alike, with the introduction of the pre-match Luncheon at each of our home games. If you and a group of friends or anyone you feel may benefit from our Club, its hospitality and friendship, would like to attend one of these events please let me know and book your place early. We have 500 slots available throughout the season and at the time of writing almost 200 have already been sold. These functions are essential if we are to develop our membership and promote our core values and culture.

With Covid hopefully largely behind us and normal service being resumed we look forward to an exciting season both on and off the field.  Your continued support is appreciated and vital. Thanks, and enjoy the season.

There will be a minute’s silence prior to KO not just in remembrance of Her Majesty but also to recognise the sad loss of Mick Garlick, our former first team coach, friend, and great Rugby Man. Our thoughts go out to Nef and all the Family.

Neil Kelly – President


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