Monday, 19 March 2018

Stourbridge Rugby’s ‘In Touch’ Earns 2017 Constant Contact Solution Provider All Star Award




















Stourbridge Rugby is recognised for achievements using online marketing tools to drive success


Stourbridge Rugby has been named a 2017 Solution Provider All Star Award winner by Constant Contact, an Endurance International Group company and a leader in email marketing solutions. The annual award recognises the most successful 10 percent of Constant Contact’s worldwide customer and Solution Provider base, based on their significant achievements using email marketing to engage their customer base and drive results for their organisation during the prior year.

 Stourbridge Rugby sends out its In Touch e-news every week during the rugby season, informing members and sponsors about upcoming games and events, match reports and the achievements of Stourbridge’s teams.

Stourbridge Rugby’s Director of Communications, Mark Denison commented, “We’re happy to be recognised by Constant Contact for achieving strong marketing results and engaging with our members and sponsors. Constant Contact’s tools have helped us to create an informative weekly e-mail news that covers all aspects of the Club. The high click through rate we enjoy from the weekly issues has contributed to keeping the website very high in the rankings.”

 Constant Contact Solution Providers are businesses that provide services tailored to the needs of small businesses - everything from web developers, to online marketing consultants, to advertising agencies and more. They use Constant Contact’s online marketing tools to generate more business for both themselves and their clients. Criteria used to select this year’s All Stars included the following during 2017:
 
  • Level of engagement with email campaigns
  • Open, bounce, and click-through rates
  • Use of social sharing features
  • Use of mailing list sign-up tools
  • Use of reporting tools
 “Email marketing continues to deliver the highest returns of any marketing channel.” said Jamie Waldinger, Vice President of Marketing, Constant Contact. “We’re thrilled to recognise Stourbridge Rugby for their achievements in using our solutions to reach their target audience.”

 About Constant ContactConstant Contact, an Endurance International Group company and a leader in email marketing since 1995, provides hundreds of thousands of small businesses around the world with the online marketing tools, resources, and personalized coaching they need to grow their business.

 About Endurance International GroupEndurance International Group Holdings, Inc. empowers millions of small businesses worldwide with products and technology to vitalize their online web presence, email marketing, mobile business solutions, and more. The Endurance family of brands includes: Constant Contact, Bluehost, HostGator, iPage, Domain.com, BigRock, SiteBuilder and SinglePlatform, among others. Headquartered in Burlington, Massachusetts, Endurance employs over 3,600 people across the United States, Brazil, India and the Netherlands. For more information, visit: www.endurance.com.

 Endurance International Group and the compass logo are trademarks of The Endurance International Group, Inc. Constant Contact, the Constant Contact logo and other brand names of Endurance International Group are trademarks of The Endurance International Group, Inc. or its subsidiaries.

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Official Launch of the Rugby365 Artificial Grass Pitch - Saturday 2nd December 2017
















The first game to be played on the new RFU Rugby365 Artificial Grass Pitch (AGP) will be the Stourbridge vs Sale FC game in National 2 North on Saturday 11th November 2017.

The Official Launch Day will be on Saturday 2nd December for the Stourbridge vs Hinckleygame. There will be 3 games on that day following the official opening ceremony at 12:00noon and admission will be FREE to all, although there will be a commemorative programme on sale throughout the day.

The itinerary will be as follows:
  • 12:00noon - Official Opening Ceremony with Peter Wheeler (Leicester, England and British & Irish Lions) and our two local MPs.
  • 12:30pm - Stourbridge U14s vs Hinckley U14s
  • 3:00pm - Stourbridge vs Hinckley in National 2 North
  • 5:30pm - Dudley Kingswinford Vixens vs Invitation Women's XV
It promises to be a great day of Rugby at Stourton Park, so please SAVE THE DATE and come down to show your support.

There's a Facebook event at https://www.facebook.com/events/2003308606661075/ where you can tell us if you're coming down.

This will be a massive day for the whole Club and we'll need your help to make make it work like clockwork. Watch out for a news story detailing the areas we'll need volunteers to help with throughout the day.

#WeAreStour!!!

Monday, 18 September 2017

Stourbridge Colts go from Strength to Strength



The 2016-17 season proved to be a great success for Stourbridge Colts. Moving up in to Division 2 of the Other Midlands Colts Sunday Leagues, the team that came together for the season was made up of a mix of established U19 & 18 players , who welcomed in the U17s moving up from Junior Rugby.

The team gelled very quickly, recording an excellent win at Bromsgrove in their first outing, going on to finish 3rd in their new division and beating 2nd placed Sutton Coldfield Colts in the final of the Fred Rowley Cup at Walsall.

Pre-season training started in July, with the Colts mixing it up in the Lions and Greyhounds XVs' training sessions. Training with senior sides certainly seems to have paid off, as the team recorded a 93-0 win over Veseyans Colts in the first game of the 2017-18 league season.

Their next fixture is against Tamworth Colts at Stourton Park on Sunday 24th September with a 2:00pm kick off. It would be great to see as much support for the lads as possible.

If you're interested in joining Stourbridge Colts, please call Sean Firth on 07780 000437

#WeAreStour!





Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Director's Cut - Luctonians Programme 9th September 2017


Welcome to Stourton Park and to our first home fixture of the campaign.

It’s not often that the first league game for Stourbridge has been far from home, so last week the trip to Otley was going to be a real test for our squad, bearing in mind the limited preparation we have had due to slow recruitment over the summer. We have had to cut our cloth financially to comply with the impending financial restrictions placed on our league by the RFU and unfortunately several targeted players wanted more than I was prepared to offer or sanction.

Many of our more experienced heads could have easily moved elsewhere for a better financial deal but have been loyal to the club which is a credit Stourbridge RFC. We clearly present a product here that appeals to attract good players and not journeymen. Rod Petty has worked hard with me during the summer and has produced a game plan that we are both very happy with. It is something that has scope for continual development during the campaign and not only asks questions of the opposition defence but requires our players to think outside the normal parameters of conventional plays. We have had a substantial turnover during the summer with 17 exits and 16 new faces, some having been with us before namely, Jack Spencer who comes back to us from Hartpury and my good friend and current British Police Captain Llyr Griffiths who joins us from Nuneaton following a ten-year absence from Stourton Park.

Sam Pailor a physically robust number eight joins us following spells at Coventry and Moseley and will lead the side this coming season. Sam is a very charismatic young man who leads from the front and I expect great things from him this season. Rest assured most of you will have shaken Sam’s hand by six o’clock this evening! Other players who’ve made a big impression thus far are Niall Gibbons a combative open side, Charlie Jeavons Fellows (son of former captain Tom) and George Morgan who joins us from Kidderminster. Steve Leach who came to us from Old Hales has also had a big impact in Stourbridge colours.

We are also in a partnership with Worcester Warriors following a long absence who have loaned us four players on dual registrations who should be available for up to 20 games this season. Having a link with a senior club is essential for us to remain competitive in this tough Northern League.

We were obviously pleased with the away win last weekend but as the other scores showed there is some real power in National Two North this season. I was very impressed with many aspects of last week’s performance and our only real minute defensive frailties came about due to injuries for a ten minute spell resulting from having to play lads carrying injuries and out of position due to the 4:1 bench format.

Lucs got a great win at the death last week on the road and have recruited some great experience in their side. Personally I’m saddened to see Alex Davidson no longer involved and I think he’s left big boots to fill. Ryan and Mike will no doubt impose their own style and ethos and as their first result  at the helm showed it’s working. What a shame though no more ‘naked bus’!

Enjoy the day!

Neil Mitchell
Director of Rugby


Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Work on the Artificial Grass Pitch Gets Underway at Stourton Park

















For those of you who've visited Stourton Park in the last week or so, you'll have noticed a big change to the First XV pitch!

Work has begun on the Artificial Grass Pitch (AGP), part of the RFU's Rugby 365 initiative and is scheduled to be finished early in the new season.

This is an exciting development for Stourbridge Rugby, reducing the chance of games and training sessions being cancelled due to weather conditions; and generally increasing the amount of rugby played at the Club. It will also provide a facility for local Clubs that need to train or catch up with league fixtures if their own pitches are unplayable.

PLEASE NOTE: If you are looking at new boots for the coming season, BLADES will NOT be permitted on the AGP.  Rules and guidelines for the use of the AGP will be posted here and on the website in dues course.

Below is the RFU's general press release that was sent out last week:









New RFU Artificial Grass Pitch in the West Midlands

  • Stourbridge Rugby Club to benefit from Rugby 365 artificial grass pitch from next season
  • Booking site open to the public on August 19 at www.englandrugby.com/rugby365

The West Midlands is set to benefit from a RFU Rugby 365 floodlit artificial grass pitch (AGP) due for completion in time for next season. The pitch is part of the RFU’s Rugby World Cup 2015 legacy of delivering over £50m investment over four years into the development of 100 AGPs across England.

The new facility will provide clubs across the West Midlands community the chance to benefit from year-round rugby through the durability of the floodlit surface which will enable additional training sessions and more flexibility in playing times. As a result, the pitch is expected to increase rugby participation across clubs and community groups, further growing the sport.

At Stourbridge Rugby Club we are delighted to be working with the RFU and to have been selected to host their artificial grass pitch”, said Robin Edwards, Chairman of Stourbridge Rugby Football Club.

He adds “We believe it will prove to be an excellent facility, which will enhance the local playing experience and provide a reliable surface that should encourage open running rugby. The opportunity to use a pitch frequently without the usual concerns about extensive maintenance is a novelty we are keen to experience. We hope to attract players of all ages and abilities from across the community to enjoy playing rugby on this new surface.” 

Three additional Rugby 365 Artificial Grass Pitches are also set for completion by next season in Cambridgeshire, Durham and West Yorkshire.

The AGPs will be located at host clubs Keighley RUFC, Billingham Rugby Club and Shelford Rugby Club and follow on from completion of the first three AGPs in Buckinghamshire, Somerset and Lancashire at the end of last year.

England Rugby’s investment in AGPs is part of their Rugby World Cup 2015 legacy of delivering over £50m over four years into the development of 100 AGPs across England.

In four months of on-season usage since the first three Rugby 365 pitches opened in January, they have hosted over 250 matches and more than 30 festivals of rugby with a combined footfall of 20,000 players enjoying the experience.

The pitches are a community facility for all clubs, players and teams from across the area to benefit from and enjoy. Testament to the growth of the women’s game, one third of all bookings have involved women and girls and a third of bookings are by non-senior teams, showing great appetite from youth players.

“We hope the local community will embrace the new AGP and take advantage of the additional opportunities it provides people to play year-round rugby,” said Steve Grainger, RFU Rugby Development Director.

He adds “Since launching our first sites in January we have seen local clubs, schools and teams from across the local areas all embracing the opportunity to play on the world-class facilities without weather, darkness or lack of pitch access limiting their ability to enjoy this great game.”

Alongside the Rugby 365 programme, the RFU is investing £10m over four years into partner organisations to part-fund 40 Rugby Share pitches on community sites. The University of Hull and University of Gloucestershire are due for completion by next season and will offer even greater access to rugby across their respective communities through multi-sport AGP playing surfaces.

For more information on Artificial Grass Pitches, and to book a pitch near you, go to www.englandrugby.com/rugby365

Here's a few pics of the progress so far...





...and here's a few pics from the recent AGP installation at Preston Grasshoppers.





Thursday, 6 July 2017

Pre-Season Training Gets Underway at Stour




















On Saturday 1st July, the weather couldn't have been better for Stour's first training day of the 2017-18 pre-season.

The First and Lions XV came together for a fitness and skills session lasting over two hours on the Lions pitch and in the gym. The session was followed by a BBQ (ably cooked by Director of Rugby, Neil Mitchell and his sous-chef, Miles Edge).

The 2017-18 season promises to be an exciting one for Stour's teams. An Artificial Grass Pitch will replace the First XV pitch at the start of the season, ensuring that no games will be cancelled and encouraging open, running rugby; and with the Lions newly promoted to Level 6, just 2 levels below the First XV, the Club has never been stronger.

If you'd like to get involved with Stourbridge Rugby as a player, supporter, Club member or sponsor, please give the Club Office a call on 01384 395000.

We look forward to hearing from you soon.











Monday, 26 June 2017

Mitch's Address from the #SRFCMayLunch Programme

























Ladies and Gentlemen, on behalf of all of the players and staff at Stourbridge Rugby Club, I welcome all of our sponsors, guests and a considerable number of new friends to our annual corporate lunch. This prestigious event has gone from strength-to-strength and this year we have a record number of attendees. It is your support that makes the club viable and enables us to play rugby.

There can be little doubt that our selection of speakers this afternoon has attracted attention and hosting Eddie Jones has been a big factor in increasing our numbers following his outstanding record in English Rugby, producing two Six Nations Championships and almost eclipsing, but certainly equalling the All Blacks record unbeaten run of 18 games. I shall be hoping for any pearls of wisdom that we can use in our campaign next year.

Keeping up with the Joneses is essential this afternoon, as we will hear from Lord Jones of Birmingham; Digby will no doubt cater for our huge regional business contingent. He is a former Director of the CBI with global influence in business and proudly a West Midlands man through and through. He regularly played devil’s advocate with his rationale and balance during the Brexit campaign and was the reason I voted out! Surely the fact we have such a high percentage of corporate business people here this afternoon shows that Midlands business is booming, at least in our conurbation. We don’t offer any political position on Brexit with the menu today but we can expect a ‘bostin’ lunch and an interesting afternoon ahead. We would like to stay well away from any form of election…

John Bentley has been our Master of Ceremonies here for the last four years and he tells me it is by far his favourite gig. I suspect he may say this to all the DoRs! The former British Lion will no doubt command the afternoon with his quintessentially northern, uniquely blunt and subtle style, I for one hope John continues to grace us with his presence and his humour here at Stourton for many years to come.

I offer thanks to all our sponsors and special guests for their continued support, the local rugby scene changes frequently and we are constantly looking to develop relationships with other clubs that have a similar ethos. The network of Midlands clubs providing player development opportunities and exchanges is something we are keen to promote and participate in. We are delighted to have a representative contingent from Wasps here today and it is most impressive that they can bring the Heineken Cup with them. The experience of watching a match at The Ricoh is truly a benchmark for other clubs to emulate.

This event could not take place without the huge amount of work and preparation that ensures the smooth running of the day. Miles, Lou, Donna, Helen and Laura have done a fantastic job in putting both the Corporate Lunch and May Ball together. You are a credit to our club and thanks for all your efforts. There are also a plethora of unsung volunteers who work in the background to make this all happen - thanks for what you do!

I have been looking forward to this afternoon with huge anticipation. I hope you all enjoy the day and support us again next year, both on and off the field.Enjoy the day!

Mitch
Neil Mitchell
Director of Rugby - Stourbridge Rugby