Staffordshire Rugby Union has provided a second round of cash grants to its clubs to help them out during these unprecedented times caused by the impact of the coronavirus.
The SRU acted quickly back in April to provide a cash injection when the pandemic brought a premature end to last season. Now, with clubhouses closed again and the Rugby Football Union having announced at the start of the month that all of its competitions at grassroots level for the whole of season 2020-21 were cancelled, the SRU surveyed its 27 member clubs for a financial update.
The responses were considered last week and a range of grant awards were allocated to 17 of the 27 clubs according to need. It takes the total sum of financial assistance provided by the SRU from its reserves and RFU budget close to £50,000 for the last eight months.
Staffordshire President/Chairman Rob Forsyth said, “We have clubs of various sizes within the county. Not all of them requested financial help but some, particularly those which provide community facilities for a variety of user groups and facilities available to hire for social functions, are really beginning to feel the pinch.”
“We have done what we can to help but it is reassuring to know that clubs themselves are taking measures to reduce costs and seek financial assistance from other sources. Further guidance will be provided to clubs by the RFU when it hosts a webinar exploring funding and club support opportunities during the Covid restrictions to be held on 17th November beginning at 7 pm. Registration details have gone out to clubs and I would encourage them all to participate.”
It is still hoped that some form of rugby action will take place before next summer. The RFU has recently outlined plans for clubs to participate in cluster competitions to replace the regular season. The SRU’s Competitions Committee is also looking at staging its county cup competitions in revised formats should the pandemic restrictions ease enough for clubs to take the field