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RBS RugbyForce 2013 Throw open your club’s doors! Event Planning Guide 10 - 11 August 2013


Ready to throw yourself in? 3

Welcome to RBS RugbyForce


What is RBS RugbyForce?


How RBS will help


Perfect ingredients for a great event


What we did – Cowal RFC


Set your goals


Get the ball rolling


Bring others on board


Keep it safe


Start-up Planner @RBS_Rugby_Lad #RBSRugbyForce

RBS Scottish Rugby


Welcome to RBS RugbyForce Thanks for registering for RBS RugbyForce 2013. You’re one of 149 clubs who have signed up to take part – the highest ever number for Scotland and almost 100 more than two years ago. RBS RugbyForce 2013 takes place on the weekend of 10 and 11 August, just before the start of the new season in the RBS domestic leagues. It’s a great time to bring local attention to your club, and a fantastic opportunity to open up the game to new supporters and players while energising the ones you already have. We know that rugby sits at the heart of communities the length and breadth of Scotland. Our RBS branches, already twinned with local clubs, are also part of these communities. RBS RugbyForce allows us to demonstrate our commitment to making a meaningful contribution to the places where we live and work.

Your RBS RugbyForce event gives you the perfect platform to welcome the local community to your club and let everyone experience first hand all the great things you have to offer: the friendly welcome, the unique atmosphere, the team spirit, the opportunities for children, the social side… and of course some quality rugby!

We’re striving to make rugby clubs more sustainable and understand that clubs need other people to help them achieve this - members, volunteers, players and supporters.

We hope this guide gives you all you need to host a great event for both your club and your local community. If you have any questions in the lead up to your event, please feel free to e-mail us at RBS Rugby Team

“Clubs up and down Scotland put in a huge amount of effort to offer something for everyone. Whether people want to play, support, volunteer or just enjoy the social side and camaraderie, RBS RugbyForce is a great chance to show them what they’ll get out of being involved and how they can be part of the club going from strength to strength.” Chris Paterson, Scotland legend and RBS Ambassador



“RBS RugbyForce showcases what club rugby is all about: local pride, enjoyment and teamwork. It’s a fantastic initiative that Scottish Rugby is proud to support, helping our clubs continue to play a vital role in the lives of Scottish communities.” Nick Rennie, Head of Clubs and Schools, Scottish Rugby

What is RBS RugbyForce? RugbyForce was created four years ago by RBS, principal partner of Scottish Rugby, to encourage communities to get involved with their local rugby club. The initiative used to be all about enabling volunteers to make improvements to club facilities. Now our ambitions are even bigger: we want to help you extend a hand to your local community and inspire in them a real and lasting connection with the club game. RBS RugbyForce celebrates rugby in Scotland, and gives clubs an opportunity to attract new volunteers, supporters, members, players and sponsors. It provides a fantastic chance to let people see what their club does for the local community. As well as a fun weekend event, it also offers a way for clubs to get some much needed help with pre-season improvements.

Although the focus is no longer purely on DIY, people will still want to help out with pre-season repairs and projects. Club success is driven by the support of its fans, members and communities. There could be untapped interest within the community – people who wouldn’t usually think of their rugby club as a place that can offer them anything besides rugby.

Like all the best plans, the strategy behind RBS RugbyForce is simple:

RBS RugbyForce is an opportunity to draw people in, and show them that your club can be a great place to socialise, host events, meet friends to watch sport on TV, enjoy a drink or dinner and bring the kids to get some exercise in safe, friendly surroundings.

• It offers an inclusive, interactive way to get youngsters and their parents behind your club.

• It’s an opportunity to show the community that your club is approachable, accessible and family-oriented while helping make it more sustainable in the long run.



How RBS will help RBS is committed to supporting rugby in Scotland and to helping clubs taking part in RBS RugbyForce 2013. We want to play our part in making your event a big success. We will: • M  ake a contribution of £250 to help fund your event. You can use it to buy materials for clubhouse repairs, keep your volunteers fed and watered or to put on a BBQ for the new folks who come down to see what your club’s all about. The list is endless! • P  romote your event through your local RBS branch. Our branch twinning programme and Rugby Rep network can help get the word out about what you’re putting on and how the local community can get involved. Pop in and speak to your Rugby Rep to get the ball rolling!

• P  rovide you with promotional materials. You’ll soon be receiving a banner to put up at your ground letting everyone know what’s happening and when. You’ll also receive an event poster • H  elp get the media behind your event. We’ll make sure that local papers and radio stations know all about RBS RugbyForce. We’ll also be promoting events via the RBS Scottish Rugby Facebook page and the @RBS_Rugby_Lad Twitter account. Why not share what you’ve got planned by tweeting us using #RBSRugbyForce • T  en lucky clubs will also receive a visit from a Scotland player on the day. All clubs who registered for RBS RugbyForce 2013 were invited to explain how a Scotland player appearance would add value to their event, with a panel from RBS and Scottish Rugby selecting the best entries.

@RBS_Rugby_Lad #RBSRugbyForce #RBSRugbyForce

RBS Scottish Rugby


The perfect ingredients for a great event Every rugby club has its own unique goals. With a bit of imagination and some solid planning, your RBS RugbyForce event can be a leap forward towards achieving yours. Perhaps you have ambitions to develop future Scotland internationals. Or you want to create an environment where families and friends can enjoy themselves; by playing, supporting or simply being involved. Your RBS RugbyForce event is a chance to showcase what’s great about your club, attracting more players and members, extra supporters and even new sponsors along the way. At first, the idea of getting a group of people together might leave you wondering how to keep everyone entertained and engaged especially when they’re all different ages, with different interests. But it should be a lot easier than you think.

For an added splash of colour…

For a start, people are coming to your RBS RugbyForce day because they want to be part of an event that celebrates community life and grassroots sport. So they’ll be open to getting involved - and having a good time!

• Encourage keen cooks and bakers to rustle up some goodies. People love browsing these sorts of stalls, buying treats and presents

Good food, good company and plenty of fun – your RBS RugbyForce essentials

• Ask your local garden centre to donate some flowers and plants to sell, with proceeds going to the club. Say you’ll hand out their leaflets on the stall

• Raffles are always popular – food and drink prizes tend to go down well with a rugby audience!

You can use your £250 fund from RBS to help cover the cost of the event, including food, refreshments and materials. There are all kinds of activities you could organise to attract people and keep them entertained: • S  talls stands and games from Tug o’War to welly wanging, face paining and bouncy castles • T  o keep things rugby themed, how about a coconut shy with rugby balls to knock them over! • W  hy not run a game of touch rugby? It’s a great way to give new players young and young at heart a taste of the game • D  on’t forget plenty of soft drinks and ice. Helping out is thirsty work! • W  hat about serving “cream teas” or home-made cakes in the clubhouse?

@RBS_Rugby_Lad #RBSRugbyForce

RBS Scottish Rugby


What we did Cowal RFC

We chose to run a sevens touch rugby tournament last year. We went for touch as a lot of people were keen to try rugby, but were a little worried about the physical aspect. We held our event in July as our pitch was being used for the local Highland Games on the original RBS RugbyForce date. This also happened to be the weekend before our pre-season training began so it was a great opportunity to get existing players and potential new ones together and build some enthusiasm for pre-season. Around 20 people new to rugby came along and took part. These were mostly friends of existing players, and for a small club such as ours it represented a great turn out. Most of the 20 have stayed in touch in one way or another. It turned out that four of them were naturals and played regularly throughout last season. Our advice to other clubs is keep it simple. It doesn’t have to be about a new clubhouse or changing rooms. If you attract and keep even one new member then it’s a successful day. This year we’re holding another seven a side touch tournament. Excitement within the club has been growing since the end of the season and everyone has been talking it. Some teams have been preparing for it since March!



“The RBS RugbyForce initiative is great way for the club to integrate more with the local community, and we hope it continues for many years.” Clydesdale RFC

Set your goals

Your RBS RugbyForce weekend ‘to do’ list At RBS, we want to share all our knowledge and expertise to help you plan your RBS RugbyForce event. There are a number of different areas to look at, but we’re very familiar with the steps you need to take to kick things off. We’ve created this simple project plan which covers all the key tasks you may need to tackle in the run-up to your event: initial planning, budgeting, health and safety, media relations and marketing. The first stage is to set your goals and tasks. This may take some time, but it’s well worth it as the effort you invest here will really help the end result and keep everybody on track. Each RBS RugbyForce event is unique, so feel free to adapt our suggestions to best suit your club’s plans.

Initial Planning Here’s where you can lay the foundations for a successful event • Identify projects What are the key areas of your event you need to look into first? Three to five main projects should be enough These could include: • C  atering (sourcing food and drink, as well as party supplies) Do you know a butcher who might help out with meat for the BBQ? • A  ctivities and games (you may need to hire or buy equipment, or arrange some junior-sized tops or t-shirts for a game of touch rugby) • S  talls and stands (it’s surprising how many people have spare garden furniture or wallpaper tables they’re willing to bring along!)

• L ist goals and tasks Each project should have specific goals and a list of things ‘to do’. Once you get going you’ll find your ‘to do list’ will really flow • D  efine team structure Get someone to be project leader for the event. Each project should have a leader/ captain and an estimated number of required team members • W  ho can help? List and contact local businesses and suppliers who might be willing to get involved. Some may offer free or discounted goods or services– it’s always worth asking! • F  inancial planning Create a budget to cover all of your potential expenses and possible revenue from grants, fund raising etc.

• E  ntertainment (local musicians, a juggler, a magician, a face painter?) • D  IY materials


• Communication Spread the word among your club members, and recruit volunteers (put up posters for members to sign). Getting the local media involved is a great way to promote your event to a wide variety of people. If you have members’ email addresses or a club Facebook page and Twitter account, make sure to get the message out. And remember to let your twinned RBS branch know the details of your event so they can help drum up support.


Action Planning

Now you can start to fill in the detail of your projects. • Materials What do we need to buy, and where do we buy it? • Equipment What tools do we need? Who can lend us what we need? • People Do we have the skilled people we need? Who else can we ask? • Assignments Begin to allocate roles and responsibilities.

Team Planning

Give each team member a clear game plan of what they need to do. • Finalise teams Allocate a specific name or names against each task. • Materials and equipment Consider the items that each team will need for their project – and make a list. • Insurance, health and safety Make sure you take precautions to protect your teams, volunteers, guests and club • Catering and refreshments Plan enough of the right stuff to keep your people fed, watered and happy!

The Event

Create a great record of the weekend – from start to finish! • Pre-event photography Take ‘before’ and ‘after’ pictures – and for fun, include some ‘during’! • Media Tell the local media about your event - both before and after. • Keep us up to speed with your progress Let us know how you’re getting on: share your pictures on the RBS Scottish Rugby Facebook page and by tweeting @RBS_Rugby_Lad using #RBSRugbyForce. • First Aid Be safe – carry out a full risk assessment. And make sure you have a First Aid provider and/or kit for onsite assistance at your event.

@RBS_Rugby_Lad #RBSRugbyForce

RBS Scottish Rugby


Get the ball rolling Contact local media We’ll be involving the national and regional media in the build up to RBS RugbyForce 2013 and on the weekend itself, but it always pays to involve local contacts. A good place to start is Just put your town or region into the search bar and you’ll get a list of print titles, TV and radio stations based in your local area. As well as newspapers, each region has BBC and STV/ITV regional news desks. Not sure which region you fall into? No problem - you can search for your postcode in the ‘BBC Local’ box at local. For STV/ITV regions, check out and com/local. Once you’ve got contact details for your news outlet, give them a call and speak with the main news desk first. As your story is focused on community sport, you could also ask to be put through to their sports desk. Then give them all the information about your upcoming RBS RugbyForce event!

Circulate a media release

Don’t forget to include contact details for your club in any media material, so journalists and editors can get in touch with further questions or for details of interview and photo opportunities on the day.

Invite local celebs or well-known players As well as inviting the media along, be bold and invite local celebrities, your local mayor, your MP/MSP, or elite players who have a connection with your club or region.

Take plenty of photos! Make sure someone is responsible for photography – it’s a great reminder of the day and the perfect way to tell the story of what you’ve achieved as a club. How about making a video of the event for an excellent ‘before’ and ‘after’ story? Send out a post-event media release with images from the day and/ or write an article for your local paper. Display your photos and video on your website and promote via your Facebook and Twitter channels.

About a week before your event, why not send out a media release focusing on your goals. Ask the media to run a story highlighting the event, the people involved, and a brief summary of what you’re hoping to achieve for and with your local community.

@RBS_Rugby_Lad #RBSRugbyForce

RBS Scottish Rugby

Keep the media in touch

Keep people updated in the lead up to your event.

If you’ve managed to strike a good relationship with local media in and around RBS RugbyForce, why not find ways to keep them involved and interested all the way through the season? Media love to hear and promote what’s going on in the community – if you’ve a story to tell or success to share, make sure and let them know!

Make sure they know where and when they have to be, by preparing an outline of the weekend’s events and posting it on your notice board, Facebook and Twitter channels.

Keep a record of your event Afterwards, why not circulate photos of the weekend to everyone who helped out – it’s always great to have a reminder of what you achieved together!

Why not use your RBS RugbyForce event to raise funds for your club? As well as new projects like clubhouse repairs, you can use your RBS RugbyForce event to raise funds for existing activity like micros, minis and midis teams. It could also be an opportunity to invite potential sponsors to experience how much your club has to offer the local community. Fun activities such as quizzes and auctions are particularly good both for raising funds and having a sociable afternoon or evening.

Managing your budget

Get social!

It’s essential to keep track of your overall spend with an event budget. It will help the whole team stay organised and avoid going over budget. Costs to consider will include catering, equipment hire, professional help if needed and materials and tools.

Share your event photos and banter with us on the RBS Scottish Rugby Facebook page and by tweeting @RBS_Rugby_Lad using #RBSRugbyForce. We’ll help spread the word to our 64,000 Facebook fans and 11,000 Twitter followers!”


Bring others on board Many hands make light work Regardless of the size of your event, one of the most successful ways to meet your goals is to encourage help and support from your existing players, supporters, members, volunteers and sponsors. It may seem obvious, but you can really make a difference by bringing people together to help give your project wings, drawing on the pride that they all share at being part of your club.

Don’t be afraid to ask!

People and organisations are willing to help in all sorts of ways, so if you have a need - whether it’s a local celebrity to announce the winners of the raffle or nearby shops to donate the prizes - make sure you ask someone you think can lend a hand. After all, everyone loves being part of something that’s for the good of the whole community!

Everyone will be able to contribute something to the team effort, with the potential for outstanding results. In the table on the next page, we’ve listed some of the ways in which you can seek practical help and support.

“RBS RugbyForce is a great way of getting all aspects of the club involved on one day to help improve the facilities. We would recommend it to any other club.” Aberdeenshire RFC



Other Supporters Potential Support


How can they get involved?

What will they need from you?

Businesses/ Organisations

• Local, regional, national existing supporters/sponsors

• Donations of materials/services

•P  ublicity through display boards, newsletters, website, local media coverage of their involvement

• Discounts or vouchers • Specialised skills – brick layers, plumbers, joiners, plasterers, upholsterers

• new supporters/sponsors

The Local Community

• Local community groups for any skills, time, facilities, and materials they can offer

• A variety of skills such as: artistic, media, IT, resistant materials

•P  ublicity; opportunities for students to practice their skills; mentoring

• Raise the profile of your event in the media and local community

•R  efreshments and a big thank you!

• Schools/colleges for students and staff that may be able to offer varied skills Special Guests

• Former players from your club or high-profile former players from your region • Local celebrities, MPS, MSPs, local councillors or other famous faces

The Media

• Local/regional newspapers • Local commercial radio stations • BBC radio station • Club website(s)

• Attract support through attendance from their partners and networks to assist with projects/coaching

• Raise event awareness of business or local community supporters and special guests

•G  ood news stories involving the local community

• Say thank you to your partners • R  aise your club, volunteer and partner profiless • Request support • Help recruit new members

Club Members/ Supporters

• All members, their families and friends, players and supporters

• Provide a range of skills, resources, contacts

•R  efreshments and a big thank you!

• Fresh ideas • Committing their time to help potential roles they can fill: – Project Manager – Publicity Officer/PR guru – Procurement Manager –P  hotographer, Video Diarist, Caterer, Labourer, Plumber, Plasterer, Joiner, Electrician, Painter, Soft Furnishing Maker – Creche Organiser and assistant to the above

Local Authority

• Sports Development and Leisure • Building Services • Parks and Recreation

• Free hire of: Equipment/Transport/Skips Labour/Skills; landscaping; publicity

@RBS_Rugby_Lad #RBSRugbyForce

• Refreshments and a big thank you!

RBS Scottish Rugby


Keep it safe While it is clearly the intention of everyone involved with RBS RugbyForce 2013 that clubs taking part have and enjoyable time, it is important to ensure that everyone works both safely and smartly. Clubs should treat as paramount the safety of all participants. Clubs may have a duty of care to each participant and if any participant is injured, it is possible they may be able to sue the club.

6. E  nsures that no tasks are attempted by participants who are not appropriately qualified or who do not feel comfortable, especially in relation to: • Electrical work • Use of blades/sharp tools/heat/chemicals • Use of heavy/complicated machinery

For more information visit: or contact To reduce the likelihood of any problems for all participants and, ultimately, each club, we would suggest that each club: 1. A  ppoints a Project Manager who will supervise those tasks that are to be undertaken and will assign those tasks to the willing and most appropriate volunteers. The Project Manager should keep a record of who is assigned to a task and the experience of that person. 2. C  hecks the club’s current insurance policies to ensure that it has the appropriate cover to protect and cover all participants in relation to the tasks being undertaken during RBS RugbyForce 2013. 3. E  nsures that a safety officer and/or appropriate first aid assistance is available and that medical and first aid kits are available and fully stocked. 4. U  ndertakes a basic risk assessment of each of the tasks. The club should briefly analyse:

• Working at height/on unsafe structures • Working alone and/or unsupervised 7. E  nsures that all reasonable safety precautions are taken at all times. 8. W  here best practice dictates or suggests that safety equipment is worn or used, ensures that such equipment is provided, is in good condition and is worn/used at all times. 9. Ensures that children are supervised at all times. Following these guidelines may not prevent accidents taking place but will, we hope, help you to reduce risks and protect the club. As RBS cannot undertake assessment of the risks involved in the tasks you have planned for RBS RugbyForce 2013, you will have to use your own commonsense as to how best to organise your activities. Therefore these guidelines are not to be considered as, nor are they intended to be, definitive advice.

• What hazards exist in a task • Who is at risk

RBS and Scottish Rugby accept no liability for any direct or indirect loss or damage caused to any club, individual or third party as a result of following these guidelines or carrying out any tasks during RBS RugbyForce 2013.

• Whether the participant has the necessary experience and/or qualifications • Whether an accident is likely • How serious the consequences of an accident could be • What steps can be taken to reduce accidents • Generally, only low risk tasks should be undertaken. Where higher risks tasks are attempted you must ensure that adequate extra safety precautions are taken

To help plan and manage your risks we recommend using the Health and Safety Executive ‘five steps to risk assessment’:

5. E  nsures that the premises are safe before any tasks are undertaken.

@RBS_Rugby_Lad #RBSRugbyForce

RBS Scottish Rugby


Start-up Planner The effort you put into your RBS RugbyForce weekend will be well worth it when you see just how much everyone gets out of it - including your players, members and supporters, and the local community. Have a great time! To get things going, note some of your initial thoughts here…

Key Projects


Income Sponsors? £ Donations? £ Total Income £

___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________

Local Businesses who might help


___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________

DIY (Paint, Fittings etc) £ Cleaning £ Equipment hire £ Food & Beverages £ Publicity (Flyers, etc) £ £ £ £ Total Expenditure £

Key People

Name Skill ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________

Net (inc. Less Exp)



Our support for Scotland’s clubs doesn’t end with RBS RugbyForce. RBS is proud to: • Sponsor the domestic men’s and women’s leagues and knock-out tournaments • Support RBS Finals Day as the climax to the men’s and women’s cup competitions • Award RBS Club, Club Volunteer and Try of the Month to celebrate hard work and success • Provide grants for clubs to order vital new kit through RBS Locker Room • Run sustainability workshops to guide clubs to a thriving future • Twin clubs with their local RBS branch for marketing support To keep up to date with all our rugby activity, head to the RBS Scottish Rugby Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @RBS_Rugby_Lad. For any RBS RugbyForce enquiries, please email

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RBS RugbyForce Event Planning Guide 2013

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