Friday, 9 June 2017

Chairman's Welcome... from the Corporate Business Lunch Programme

“G’day” seems an appropriate welcome for our premier corporate event this year. You may notice more than a hint of the antipodean influence during the day and we hope this triggers your own favourite Aussie memories and the friendships you have made through rugby. It is this global camaraderie that we value and support throughout our approach to the game. Stourbridge RFC has built a reputation as a club eager to reach out and participate, promoting the development of rugby and combining our sporting and business interests together. The foresight and hard work to drive the club has been expertly engineered by John and Jacqueline Jeavons-Fellows the founders and patrons of this event.

Our thanks go to our main sponsors for this event; A&H Construction, Old Mutual Wealth and Marston’s, their support is much appreciated and we hope they will continue to enjoy their association with our club. For those of you who are new to this venue we host many other events, usually in the clubhouse, during the year and you would be very welcome to come along and enjoy the ambiance. There are a variety of sponsorship options available providing your business with an opportunity to become involved with Stourbridge Rugby. Our presence on social media is growing apace and this could be a useful source of information and a vehicle for promoting your business. Please pick up a leaflet for more details.

Traditionally the President comments on rugby matters and you will find his views later in this programme. It is inevitable that we mention the outstanding recent achievements of the England Rugby teams that have certainly attracted attention across the World, we hope to discover the secrets of this success from our guests. We will certainly be listening carefully for any advice that they may impart.For the proceedings today we will be led by the familiar figure of John Bentley MC, a British Lion and an international in both codes. His gentle and delicate approach to the subtle art of three-quarter play is a delight for most forwards. He tells it like it is.

We will hear from Digby, Lord Jones of Birmingham who lists amongst his stellar career Head Boy of Bromsgrove School (expelled), Former Director-General of the Confederation of British Industry, being an ardent Brexiteer, and a Leicester Tigers supporter. Which of these diverse interests will flavour his address we wonder?

We are also delighted to have a professional auctioneer amongst us today. Kidderminster born, Phil ‘the Fox’ Serrell, to use his official TV title, is no stranger to many of us who are glued to the daytime television episodes of Bargain Hunt, Antiques Road Trip, etc. His task will be to bring order to our auction that traditionally has been run on a strictly amateur basis.

We consider ourselves fortunate to have been working closely with the RFU and their expert advice and guidance has been influential in developing our facilities. The addition of new floodlights to the training pitches and the exciting prospect of hosting an artificial grass pitch are examples of how their involvement is reaching clubs like ours and making a difference to sporting opportunities for the local community. Our aim is to involve local people in rugby and encourage them to take an active part in sporting activities.

We sincerely hope you will enjoy our biggest ever formal gathering and use this opportunity to socialise. For many of us it will be an opportunity to remind ourselves of how great we were as players, thankfully there were fewer videos in those days.

I draw your attention to my favourite photograph of the 1991 World Cup Final, Stourbridge supporters anticipating the big event with a rather under-developed Twickenham in the background. How many of these people you can name and how many you can find at this event today? For a bonus point how many tickets did they have between them?

Answers to Ceri Davies -#smartalec #knowall

Robin EdwardsChairman SRFC

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