TOP BAR - Fixtures

Six Community Champions on parade

Rugby’s greatest stars will grace the Rugby World Cup later this year but there are many unsung heroes working behind the scenes to make the game inclusive for all.

And it is that spirit which encapsulates Premiership Rugby’s Community Champion award, supported by Land Rover rewarding a person who delivers significant social change or support in their community.

A panel of judges managed to boil down the nominations from the Premiership Rugby clubs to a shortlist of six people who have all made a positive impact in their community.

The Award is one of this month’s All Party Parliamentary Rugby Union Group Premiership Rugby Community Awards which takes place at the House of Commons on 24 June.

The winner – at the 10th Premiership Rugby Community Awards – could be someone who has taken an active role in a grassroots club linked to a Premiership Rugby club, someone who has been a mentor for a participant in a club social inclusion programme, or a volunteer who has shown exceptional commitment over the course of the year.

Judging the nominations left James Keegan, sport advisor at the British Council, admitting he was humbled to learn about the people and stories that make this year’s shortlist so special.

"I was delighted to be involved in the judging of the Premiership Rugby Community Champion of the Year award," he said.

"Reading the stories of each of the nominated candidates and the impact they have had on their local community through the sport of rugby was truly inspiring.

"All of the nominees are already winners in terms of the effect that their work has had on young people, and my experience on the judging panel has reinforced in my mind the unique appeal of rugby in delivering real social change."

Mark Pawsey, MP for Rugby and Bulkington, and a member of the All Party Parliamentary Rugby Union Group said:  "I congratulate all the clubs who entered this year’s Parliamentary Community Awards and look forward to meeting the finalists at the House of Commons on 24 June.  The work done by the professional clubs and their partners to grow the game should be applauded, especially in a Rugby World Cup year, when the opportunity to leverage the interest in the game will be enormous."

Bath Rugby’s nomination, Nick Tilley, is head coach of Chippenham Under-15s and Nick Elbourne, endorsed by London Irish, works tirelessly for Wimborne.

London Welsh put forward Jeremy Bristoe of Witney Wolves, while Newcastle Falcons have recognised Houghton’s Chris Simpson.

Leicester Tigers volunteer Eric Barker has been nominated by the East Midlands club, while the Aviva Premiership Rugby Champions Saracens have nominated Sheila Coulthard.

"The Community Champion Award is a fantastic acknowledgement of an outstanding individual who has worked tirelessly throughout the rugby season to support rugby within their community. These Community Champions often don't receive the limelight they deserve, so it is great to have an evening where due recognition is given for their efforts in helping to drive rugby at the grassroots level. It is something that we at Land Rover place great emphasis on and value too," Richard Duncan, Sponsorships and Partnerships Manager, Land Rover UK.

The winner will be announced at the All Party Parliamentary Rugby Union Group Premiership Rugby Community Awards on 24 June at the House of Commons.
 
Shortlist

Bath Rugby (Nick Tilley – Chippenham RUFC)
London Irish (Nick Elbourne – Wimborne RUFC)
London Welsh (Jeremy Bristoe – Witney Wolves RUFC)
Newcastle Falcons (Chris Simpson – Houghton RUFC)
Leicester Tigers (Eric Barker – Leicester Tigers Volunteer)
Saracens – (Sheila Coulthard- Saracens)

Latest News

Exeter Chiefs name squad for Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

Ricky Pellow says Exeter Chiefs are relishing the chance to kick-off the new 2017/18 season with a big showing at…

Max Bodilly

Gloucester Rugby confirm squad for this weekend’s Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

The 12-man Gloucester Rugby squad for this weekend’s Singha Premiership Rugby 7s action has been named, with an exciting young…

Ollie Thorley will feature for the Cherry & Whites

Worcester Warriors get set for this weekend’s Singha 7s with Gordon Ross in charge

Worcester Warriors are looking to their experienced 7s players to make an impact in the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s tournament…

Gordon Ross

Adam Radwan ready to fly for Newcastle Falcons in Singha 7s action

Having lit up last season’s Singha Premiership Rugby 7s, Newcastle Falcons flyer Adam Radwan is determined to do the same…

Adam Radwan

Singha 7s is a ‘brilliant tournament’ says Harlequins’ Ross Chisholm

Harlequins full-back Ross Chisholm is urging his up-and-coming compatriots to grab their Singha Premiership Rugby 7s opportunity with both hands.…

Ross Chisholm

Neil Briggs Previews Singha 7s

Neil Briggs, Team Manager for the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s, is excited to see how his young Sharks this weekend.…

Neil Briggs Previews Singha 7's

Leicester Tigers form new partnership with Loughborough University

Leicester Tigers and Loughborough University have formed a new partnership to provide development opportunities for players and coaches. The link…

Bath Rugby and Canterbury to donate £10,000 worth of kit to local clubs

Bath Rugby and Canterbury are donating up to £10,000 to 10 grassroots clubs in the Somerset, Dorset and Wiltshire area…

Bath Rugby and Canterbury to donate £10,000 worth of kit to local clubs

Harlequins join forces with world leading sports tech Catapult

Harlequins have today (Monday 24th July) strengthened their partnership with world leader in performance analytics, Catapult, to track and improve…

Harlequins join forces with world leading sports tech Catapult

London Irish sign Dawidiuk

London Irish have bolstered their front-row with the signing of hooker Darren Dawidiuk as preparations continue ahead of the 2017/18…

London Irish sign Dawidiuk

Jeff Williams excited by new Bath Rugby role for Singha Premiership Rugby 7s

Bath Rugby won’t be lacking rugby 7s experience when former England international Jeff Williams takes the reigns for the Singha…

Whiteley hoping to lead Saracens starlets to glory in Singha 7s

Saracens scrum-half Tom Whiteley is hoping to use all his experience of competing at the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s to…

Mike Delany returns to New Zealand

Newcastle Falcons fly-half Mike Delany has returned to his native New Zealand to sign for home province, Bay of Plenty.…

Mike Delany

Topsy Ojo talks London Double Header memories

With six weeks to go until London Irish lock horns with Harlequins in the iconic London Double Header at Twickenham,…

Topsy Ojo

Toby Flood hopes to bring ruthless streak to Newcastle Falcons

Toby Flood is hoping to help give Newcastle Falcons the ruthless streak required to push them further up the Aviva…

Toby Flood

Aviva Premiership Rugby set for changes after six law amendments added to global trial

Aviva Premiership Rugby will be part of the global trial for six new law amendments after the World Rugby Executive…

Alex Lewington hopes London Irish youngsters will gain confidence from Singha 7s

London Irish wing Alex Lewington cannot wait to see which youngsters step up to the plate in the Singha Premiership…

Alex Lewington

Worcester Warriors sign Ireland scrum-half Peter Stringer

Warriors have signed Ireland international Peter Stringer on a six-month deal ahead of the 2017/18 season. The scrum-half will join…

Peter Stringer

Tim Streather forced to retire from rugby

Former Saracens centre Tim Streather has been forced to retire from the game due to a knee injury. Commenting on…

Tim Streather