A group of “usual suspects” set off on a Saturday afternoon outing to watch a Blackheath Rugby Club match against Loughborough.
Blackheath or ‘club’ as they are known by their fans have their home ground at Kidbrooke Lane. It’s a convenient trip from the Arsenal as it’s 20 minutes away on the number 122 bus which you can pick up at the stop on the main road just outside the old Woolwich market building.
The afternoon kicked off in the beer tent, no surprises there. There was a reluctance on the part of some to leave the tent, as there were a number of International games on
TV. The bar staff cured this on kick off by switching the TV off and so it was off to watch what we had come to see.
An excellent first half saw Blackheath peg back an early Loughborough lead to go in ahead at half time. The crisp day had turned bitterly cold and it was back to the beer tent for some half time refreshment, mulled wine in place of cold beer. Have to say I was the most reluctant to leave at the end of the half time interval, as Scotland were giving Australia a right mauling, but again the switching off of the TV provided the right encouragement.
This half we settled for watching the match from the safety of a group huddle at a vantage point just outside the beer tent. The stands were left to the hardy and those with the arctic survival gear. The second half was another well contested and close affair on the park, with Loughborough edging it by a single point. Disappointed – slightly, but this can be quickly overcome in the beer tent. Entertained – definitely. Likely to go back – most certainly. Great day out with a great bunch of folks. Look forward to going back soon.
by Martin O Donnell
To See More Pictures From The Adventure Day Out Blackheath Click HERE
Royal Arsenal Rugby Club is predominantly a social group who play Tag (NON contact) Rugby weekly, based on the Royal Arsenal Riverside SE London, that competes in East London Leagues. On occasions nicknamed “The Wooly Arses”, the club was founded in 2014 by John Gavin and Errol Slater having been inspired by a friend who organised a game in Blackheath South East London. Through sheer dedication and passion it has grown like no other club of it’s kind and are officially accredited to the RFU, the very first Tag Club to be accepted into the organisation. The ambitions will not stop there by any means, because the club have massive plans for the future. With membership increasing monthly, the club are gaining enough interest to one day create a full contact rugby team and have their own clubhouse.
We have so much going on Saturday 9th December. Our promotional booth will be at the RA Farmers Market to raise more awareness about the club (from 11am). Not only that, but at midday, we will be launching our new kit and presenting our charity partner, Wooden Spoon, with a cheque from all of the fundraising we have done recently. Our sponsors will also be present, so it is a great opportunity for the club to show off all the fantastic achievements it has for this year. To top it all off, our rugby band Wu-Tag Clan will be performing at the market to keep everybody moving during the day.
We are happy to announce that our favorite MC, Ed de Gaetano will be joining us again for our year end party in the Dial Arch and can’t wait for his banter and making sure the proceeding go smoothly, along with the spirit of Christmas.
Christmas Jumper Parties are old hat! It’s time to do something new! From 7.30pm, we will be holding an Ugly Sock Party at the pub. As well as coming in your funky Christmas socks, you bring another pair stuffed with your unmarked quirky Christmas gift, and tied up with a bow!
We will be following last year’s Kris Kringle principle (https://royalarsenalblog.wordpress.com/2016/12/17/royal-arsenal-rugby-year-end-xmas-party-let-the-games-begin/), but rather than wrapping your present this year, just stuff them into funny socks, please remove all the shopping tags from them first. It should be no more than £10 in value. Tie your socks together with your prettiest Christmas ribbon and you’re ready to go. The uglier the socks, the better, just make sure they’re Christmassy! There are lots of places to find Christmas socks. Have fun making a new tradition!
Don’t be late, as early comers will receive a welcome drink.
2017 has been an amazing year for the club, and we look forward to celebrating it with you on Saturday.
Wooden Spoon – the children’s charity of rugby.
Wooden Spoon is the children’s charity of rugby, funding life-changing projects across the UK and Ireland since 1983. The charity have distributed in excess of £24 million to more than 650 projects, helping over 1 million children and young people with disabilities and facing disadvantage. This achievement would not be possible without the support of the rugby community who play a huge part in that success.
As part of that community the Royal Arsenal (Tag) Rugby Club has for the past two years been an Official Partner Club of Wooden Spoon and continues to support the charity with innovative and original membership activities and events.
The club’s activities and events help to raise funds and is used by the Wooden Spoon Kent Regional Team to fund programmes in the Kent Region. The Team is made up of dedicated volunteers from across the County who’s role it is to oversee both fund raising and fund spending year on year. Because of this unique set up (and unlike many other charities) you can be assured that none of the funds raised and donated by the club are used to cover the costs of administering a national charity.
Appropriately, one project Kent Wooden Spoon fund annually is a Disability Tag Rugby Programme in partnership with Kent RFU. The programme funds a specialist trained coach and young leaders to deliver a series of adaptive coaching sessions in special schools across the county and culminates in a celebratory festival of tag rugby at a county rugby club. Spoony the Wooden Spoon mascot (pictured) is always the centre of attention at the festival whilst children enjoy a wonderful day of rugby designed to appropriately challenge their ability and develop their confidence.
To find out more about Wooden Spoon visit www.woodenspoon.org.uk where you can also become regular donor and member for less than a pound a week (on joining make sure you mention you are a RARC member).
Matt Mitchell – Rugby Development Manager WS
Hello folks. I’m Kyle! I’d like to share with you some of my favourite coaching tips. These are purely my own tried and tested but of course the same shoe does not always fit the other’s foot! Have a short read, try it out and please give us your feedback – if it’s critical or you just like my honesty, that ‘s cool!!
Defense: Keep the flat line until 5m out from own line, then press defense as a team. Put the pressure on the attack, force them into errors.
Being clinical: Tag players need to convert more of their chances and score more points, gather momentum and keep it up!
Playing the 6 tags/tackles: Don’t be scared to get tagged, back your abilities and if we use the 6 can help gain momentum!
Kyle Graham – RARC Club Player / Member