Tom Fitzgerald


RDC Hon. Secretary




The RDC has replaced the Rugby Development Partnership. There are four subcommittees: Team Lancashire (Representative Rugby); Player Development; Coaching & Refereeing; Competitions.  The Chairmen and the members of the RDC and the four Sub-committees are appointed by the CB Management Board.




During the period under review the following points of interest merit reporting to the membership:




Coach and Referee Development:




The Lancashire Rugby Development Centre project aimed at Coaches in the open age game is unique; no other County in the United Kingdom provides a similar service.  We deliver one or more conferences and approximately 30 workshops per annum featuring National Level Coaches. We currently reach out to over 370 coaches covering in excess of 40 clubs, 16 schools, six universities and six FE Colleges.




The Development Centre Club Coach Mentoring Scheme also provides up to ten hours of coach and player development free of charge to local clubs. 




The Development Centre, working with the RFU Area Training Officer, also offers specialised coaching and refereeing development courses to players reaching the end of their playing careers




Other referee recruitment, training and development are being undertaken in joint partnership with the RFU, Cheshire CB the Federation and local societies.




Player Development




16-24 Age Group: The Chairman of Lancashire RFU has convened steering group for club, school and Colts League to review and seek to redress the loss of players in the 16-24 age group




The Lancashire RFU Rugby Development Centre Programme is forging strong links with the FE and the tertiary education sector. Student specific rugby clinics for coaches and players have been held with view to building links with clubs.




RFU staff deliver a wide range of programmes in the secondary, FE and Tertiary education sector; further details of which can be obtained from the reports of the Area Rugby Development Manager.




13 - 16 Age Group: Lancashire’s District programme and the Schools of Rugby have been replaced by a National District based program delivered in Lancashire & Cheshire in partnership with RFU, Sale Academy and Cheshire CB.  The programme is branded as the North West Developing Player Programme; Lancashire supports but, does not own the programme that is being delivered.




 Age Grade Representative Rugby




15 -18 Age Group: The Development Centre and the Lancashire Senior Rugby Group (Senior XV & U20s) provide a team of professional coaches to mentor our CB Representative Squad coaches. This is a move to introduce continuity and a Lancashire style of play that players can take with them as they progress though the age grades.  Fitness programmes are in place. Trials, assessment and selection protocols are being introduced. 




U20 National Championship:  Three Development Centre coaching workshops in July/August were also used to develop players eligible for selection for the U20s and this will be continued in the coming season. We now have three full Internationals coaching the U20s: Warren Spragg, Martin Scott and Stuart Turner.




RDC Strategic Planning 2017 & Onwards




The RDC proposes to incorporate the following courses of action into the Annual Operational Plan for season 2016-17 and the Five Year Strategic Plan:




Lancashire Rugby Union Academy




The Rugby Development Committee together with the Team Lancashire, Coaching and Player Development Committees will form an academy to develop targeted players and coaches. The Academy will initially focus on the U15-16 and U17-18 age bands




Lancashire Rugby Development Centre Programme




There will be a review of the Development Centre Programme. Specific sessions for targeted junior age grade coaches will be included in the programme




Club Coach Mentor Scheme




Delivery of the Mentor Scheme will be expanded.  In addition to the existing scheme the programme will also offer district based sessions to promote whole club coaching aimed at both senior and junior age grade sections of clubs




Town Team Competition




The Town Team competition will be re-introduced to promote rugby in schools