Friday Bulletin 18th March


The Society AGM will take place on Wednesday 27th April (venue tbc), please save the date. Further details are in the separate news item which can be found here in case you missed it.

Beginners Guide to Refereeing

Since the middle of February, the Society has been working with the RFU to deliver what the RFU call an Introduction to Refereeing and we are now calling a Beginners Guide to Refereeing.

The course lasts for 3 hours and is a mixture of indoor theory and then some practical exercises around the scrum, the tackle, and whistle work, with safety being a big factor.

Clubs participating so far have included Redditch, Telford, Worcester, Solihull School, Bromsgrove School, Hereford, Stourbridge, Shrewsbury with Bridgnorth and a couple of others waiting for the next course date. The numbers attending have reached 126.

We are now writing to all attendees inviting them to either join the Society now or to become provisional members whist they look at other options.

John Kelly, Neil Chivers and Leonie Pryor have delivered the bulk of the courses and have been ably assisted by Paul Salisbury, Rod Blaine, Olly Roberston and Phil Monaghan.

Touch Refereeing

Last call for any referees who would like to take part in an Introduction to Touch Refereeing course over the Easter period, to help with your mental and physical fitness over the summer! The form can be found here, and is open until 5pm on Monday 21st March

Centenary Kit

Although it seems “a long time ago in a lockdown far far away”, early in 2020 the Society ordered and purchased Centenary kit for all Society referees should they wish to order (as modelled in the photo by Paul S..) There are still many uncollected orders which have been occupying space in our President’s garage for the last two years. If you think you ordered kit and have not yet collected it, please email in the first instance. All kit not collected on or before the date of the AGM, 27th April, will be considered as unwanted, and placed into stock for new referees joining the Society.

Travel Expenses

A message from the Treasurer: Like us all over the last few weeks I have been monitoring the increase in cost of fuel and in particular the impact this is likely to have on household budgets. The Society currently pays matchday travel at 40p/mile and a number of you have been asking if we are likely to increase this: the short answer is ‘no’.

There are a number of reasons behind my decision, Firstly, there are only a few weeks left of the season and fuel prices have only really increased to the current levels in the last three weeks. Any increase in the allowance has to be passed on directly to clubs, and I would prefer not to do this so close to the end of the season. The current allowance remains competitive as quite a number of Societies pay considerably lower allowances (although I acknowledge that some also pay the maximum allowed, 45p). Any alteration also requires a lot of additional administrative work behind the scenes, for example on the WTR website.

During May we will be moving into ‘Summer Rugby’ mode (more about this in April) and as in previous years from the end of the season proper until 31st August it will become the responsibility of the clubs or tournament organizers to meet your travel costs directly on the day and NOT the Society.

Therefore and assuming the price of fuel remains at the current level, when I write to clubs in a few weeks I will inform them that referees will be claiming at 45p per mile throughout the summer for any games they undertake. In the meantime I will continue to monitor the cost of fuel and let you know before the start of season 2022/23 of any changes in the allowance.

England News

The latest RFU England Rugby newsletter is available to view by clicking here

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