Harrow gets into shape
Post Date: 25th July 2017
Harrow RFC participated in the NatWest Rugby Force day on 24th June. Here’s an account of their activities from club member Neil Mac Donald…
The day started with the Lions game in the clubhouse and coffee and bacon rolls for everyone, to get them in the mood for a hard day’s work. We were unexpectedly joined by a Welsh family who were up “for the ELO concert” and wanted somewhere to watch the game so we invited them to our Lions fan club.
Straight after the final whistle we got to work in 3 teams. One for the clubhouse, one for the outside area and one for the grounds. We had set ourselves an ambitious target of tasks which would mean the club would get a real makeover and clean up for the next season as well as getting several key repair jobs done.
A team of 40 volunteers tackled the jobs with quite a few staying for the whole day. What was especially good was that they came from right across the club: senior and junior players, senior members, parents, coaches, team managers and even a couple who just happen to drink in a local pub and wanted to get involved and help.
In the grounds, we repaired one of our pitches which had become unplayable due to a submerged wall rising up and breaking the surface. A digger took out the top layers of bricks and the pitch has been restored to be ready and playable for the new season. We also hired a platform so we could clean and paint the posts which has made a huge difference to the appearance and image of the grounds. Low hanging trees and shrubs were cut back for the first time in years with chainsaws up the platform, so we could get the mower round all the grassed area.
We also used the platform to clean the flagpole which hadn’t been done in a very long time!
Elsewhere in the grounds, we cleaned up the foint entrance and painted the gates, painted the equipment containers and cleared rubbish from behind the clubhouse as well as old equipment from the back of the stores and other areas.
The clubhouse received some major attention with the outside being painted, the fascia and club sign being cleaned whilst inside a team tackled a deep clean of the bar and another team painted the showers and the back door lobby. The result was a Harrow clubhouse looking smarter than it has for a few years.
We are building new mens toilets and installing a disabled toilet at the club, for which we won an Aviva Community Award. Some of the volunteer effort on our NatWest Day went towards that project with 2 coaches spending the day working on that to get plastering and joinery done as part of that project.
The volunteer team stopped for a BBQ lunch break featuring George’s famous chicken and worked carried on until 4:30/5pm at which point Andy Smart provided a beer for the workers still there. Possibly the biggest surprise of the day!
It was a great whole club day during which we achieved more than we thought we ever could and which the volunteers enjoyed too, as well as sharing the sense of achievement.
The £500 funding we received from the RFU plus the £1000 from Middlesex RFU covered the cost of materials and equipment hire so were able to push hard at what could be done. That made a huge difference to how we approached the day and how successful it was.”