NORTH Yorkshire rugby players kicked off their season in style following a three quarter of a million pound investment in new sporting facilities.
Richmond School and Sixth Form College’s first 15 got off to a flying start with a convincing 46-0 victory over Carmel College, Darlington, on their newly refurbished pitch.
Following a £313,808 grant from the Football Foundation, The FA Facilities Fund and additional funding from the Ministry of Defence Community Covenant Fund, the school has undertaken major building works to transform the sporting facilities at Richmond School.
The investment has provided a new two-storey state of the art sports pavilion compromising six changing rooms, three officials’ rooms, a medical room, multi-function room, a teaching and coaching room, kitchen, disabled facilities, plant storage and a large viewing gallery.
Richmond School PE teacher Jack Moore said: “The sporting facilities that we have now are superb.
“The entire sports field required levelling and new drainage to improve the quality of the surface and now we have an incredible pitch to kick off a new season of sport.”
Overseeing the match, led out by team captain Dan Storr, was Richmond School and Sixth Form College’s business manager Andrew Gardner, a National Division 1 and 2 North referee, who has been on the England Panel for Officials for over 14 years.
“This was our first match of the season against Carmel and it was really enjoyable,” said Mr Gardner, who has been refereeing for 20 years.
“Everyone in the squad played extremely well and were all full of enthusiasm, especially Dan Storr, who was captaining the team for the first time and is still only in Year 12.
“I think we are in for a challenging season this year but our aim is for the team to enjoy training on our new sports field and get involved in as many matches as possible.”
Loose head prop Ryan Masterman, 16, of Catterick Garrison, added: “Our old sloping pitch surface was really hard to play on.
“The new levelled area and great pavilion facilities will make such a difference when we train and play.”