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It is with immense pride that I adopt the mantle of the President of the City of Armagh RFC for the season 2022-2023. I follow in the footsteps of some truly exceptional people who have carried out the duties of President of our Club. I must pay tribute to my immediate predecessors Paul Johnston and James Scott who successfully guided the Club through the storm of the pandemic. I trust that I too can fulfil my duties with similar propriety and drive.
I last held office in the Club during the 1985-87 seasons as Honorary Secretary under the leadership of then President Eric Hamilton. In those days we were a Junior club with club captains Sam Wilson and Brian Hanna.
Our Club has long been seen as family orientated and I am delighted to see my grandson, Jack, enjoying mini rugby following in the footsteps of his mother Jenni and his uncles Ross and Michael who all pulled on the Red and Black.
Thankfully last season saw a return to rugby post Covid 19 and across the board the club had a successful year. Our First XV consolidated their position as the top Ulster team in Division 1B of the AIL and reached the final of the Ulster Senior Cup for the fourth successive year. Our Second XV reached the final of the Junior Cup and our Fourth XV made the final of the Butler Shield, while the Third XV were league champions. Our youth boys and girls also won silverware and the Club Minis continue to thrive with ever expanding numbers.
However, none of the above would be possible without the dedication of our excellent coaches, team management, physios and wide group of volunteers. Our catering team, lead by Elizabeth Atkinson, plays a vital role looking after our players and visiting teams throughout the season. A huge thank you to one and all.
As with everyone rising costs have seen our Clubhouse fuel and energy costs increase dramatically. This season, perhaps more than ever, we need to support fundraising activities and pay memberships promptly to help defray our costs.
I want to acknowledge all our sponsors and thank you all for your continued support which is vital to the success of our Club. I would ask you all to support the local businesses that help our Club through match or shirt sponsorship etc.
I wish everyone involved in coaching, managing, volunteering and supporting and especially our players an enjoyable, safe and memorable season with City of Armagh RFC .
Yours in Rugby,
President - City of Armagh Rugby Club