Fixtures - Top Bar

Leicester’s Eric Barker honoured at House of Commons

EricBarkerLeicesterAPPRUGPRCU1415

Eric Barker has been involved with rugby for 30 years but after being honoured at the All Party Parliamentary Rugby Union Group Premiership Rugby Community awards he claims his passion for spreading the sport to the next generation is stronger than ever.

After being nominated for the Community Champion Award – in partnership with Land Rover – Barker received a highly commended gong in recognition of his volunteer work with Leicester Tigers.
 
He received his award in Westminster last Wednesday evening as players, coaches, role models and volunteers all came together to recognise the unsung heroes of the game.
 
Barker started out coaching his son’s team 30 years ago before moving into the administrative side of the sport with Leicestershire Rugby Union.
 
In 1995, at the dawn of the professional era, he was approached by Leicester Tigers and has been organising tournaments and events for youngsters through the club ever since.
 
But despite his tireless efforts, Barker claims he never expected to get any recognition.
 
“A couple of weeks ago I found out I was on the shortlist for the Community Award and you could have knocked me over with a feather,” said Barker.
 
“I’ve been doing something that I love for 30 years but the one person who suffered was my wife, who had to become a member of the Tigers just to see me sometimes!
 
“When I set out 30 years ago, the ambition was to bring as many kids as possible into rugby at whatever level and that’s what we’ve stuck to.
 
“When I first volunteered with Leicester Tigers, I started an event called the Tiger Cup for local clubs and that got me involved with the community side of things.
 
 “I was the lead on making sure everything went right for around 60,000 kids and 1,000 teachers as a volunteer.
 
 “I now look after the Prima Cup, which had 72 teams in it last year, and I also look after the Tigers Challenge where we take kids on tour. And of course I organise the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup for them each year.”
 
Jeremy Bristoe, who runs a tag rugby team for disabled youngsters at Witney Wolves, won the Community Champion Award while Saracens’ GET ONSIDE! Programme and Bristol Rugby’s Eagle Project were also recognised at the awards evening.
 
Those are just three examples of the incredible work done by people and clubs up and down the country, supported by Premiership Rugby – with more than 500 volunteers and 150 community development staff work reaching 310,000 community programme participants.
 
And Barker insists he was blown away by the scale of the community work using rugby in the UK.
 
“It’s not until you come to an event like this that you realise the magnitude of everything that’s going on,” he added.
 
“You can almost be in your own little bubble but then you realise what is going on with all the other programmes all over the country.
 
“If we can work to change just one person’s life, that makes it worth it.”
 

Latest News

Fenton-Wells confident Lam will make impact at Bristol Rugby

Bristol Rugby flanker Nick Fenton-Wells is confident the club have acquired a top coach in Pat Lam but won’t let…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Aaron Morris desperate for Quins to sort out away form

Aaron Morris is proud of Harlequins’ record at the Stoop but the full-back has warned his teammates the season will…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Dowson and Barry educate Warriors Under 18s

Phil Dowson and Darren Barry gave some time on Monday evening to provide valuable advice to Warriors Under 18s, who…

Worcester Warriors Academy

Geoff Parling: Chiefs can draw European inspiration from last season’s heroics

Following two defeats from two, qualification for the European knock-out stages may look like mission improbable – but if there’s…

666709985_ht_1936_5ffe036790f2651d04cf02d772136916.jpg

Sam Egerton ready for fierce Lyon challenge

Scrum-half Sam Egerton believes Newcastle Falcons can push on and meet ‘fire with fire’ against Lyon in the European Rugby…

Sam Egerton making a break against Ospreys in the Challenge Cup

Premiership Rugby clubs in Europe live on TV

Aviva Premiership Rugby’s finest return to European Rugby Champions Cup and Challenge Cup action this weekend looking to build on…

tvrelease1111

Freddie Burns ecstatic to have stepped up after Aviva Premiership Rugby Player of the Month award

Freddie Burns’ impressive displays have seen him named Aviva Premiership Rugby Player of the Month for November and the Leicester…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Gloucester Rugby confirm new deal for scrum-half Callum Braley

Ahead of this evening's fixture with La Rochelle, Gloucester Rugby are pleased to confirm the next re-signing for the 2017/18…

Callum Braley

Josh Beaumont backs Sale Sharks’ new boys to shine

Marquee summer signings AJ MacGinty and Josh Charnley are primed and ready to make their presence felt in the second…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Freddie Burns named Aviva Premiership Rugby Player of the Month for November 2016

Leicester Tigers’ outside-half Freddie Burns has “got his strut back” and this has led to him being named Aviva Premiership…

fburns-potm-0812

Match officials for this weekend’s European fixtures

Northampton Saints will face Leinster in a rematch of the memorable 2011 final as the European Rugby Champions Cup returns…

629845781DM00026_Saracens_v

Worcester Warriors ‘unlucky’ in defeat to Wasps, says Ryan Bower

Worcester Warriors prop Ryan Bower admits it was important for his side to put in a performance against Wasps after their humbling Aviva Premiership Rugby defeat…

Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images

In-form Henry Purdy desperate to keep improving at Gloucester Rugby

Henry Purdy is refusing to rest on his laurels and has vowed to push on hard, despite praise from all…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Max Clark the centre of attention at Bath Rugby

Back in September – just when Bath Rugby were beginning to count on him in the centres – an ill-timed…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Seven tries success for Exeter Braves over Bath United

Exeter Braves’ Shaun Malton and Levi Davis of Bath United became the first opponents since 2005 to both score hat-tricks…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library