Date: Sat 2nd Sep 2017
Harlow Rugby Club Open their new Club at Latton Park.
Over 130 members and guests attended a lunch at which guest of the day, England rugby legend Jason Leonard officially declared the new club open. An impressive guest list included Richard Austin President of our constituent body Essex, Edward Evans from LSRUFC, with whom we have had an almost 50 year relationship, Ivor Smith and Chris Dyer from Essex RFU, Richard Hope their RDO from RFU, Jon Clempner Chair of Harlow Council, Ian Mitchell from Kier, John Bendelack from Huttons, Joe McGill from Harlow Council, and John Roberts of Whiskers, the Club main sponsors of many years. Among the members present the Club were delighted to welcome Eric Smith; a founder member; one of the few surviving members who attended the meeting at the Essex Skipper in 1955 at which the decision to form the club was taken. Twelve past Club captains were joined by numerous volunteers and representatives from seniors, ladies, junior and mini sections; those who keep it flourishing today. In his welcoming speech President Alan Price said “Would those founder members in 1955, who floated the uprights and crossbars down the River Stort to a farmers field and then cleared the cow pats before they could play a game ever have dared dream that come 2017 we would arrive at these wonderful facilities. “
Lunch was followed by a First team match against West Norfolk which resulted in a 56 – 5 win for Harlow. Scorers were:
Tries S. Stalley (3), D Stalley(2), R. Stalley (2), Whitby, Seely, Dodds, Conversions Smith (3).
This was followed by a match between Harlow President’s XV and Essex Bishops the County Veterans side. A 53 – 7 win to Harlow.
Over recent weeks the club has been playing warm up games and settling in to the new facilities with everything reaching a grand climax last Saturday. This weekend rugby resumes in earnest with all three mens sides and two of the youth sides starting their league contests. The first team are away to Wanstead the side they beat to take the league title last season. The Rams are away to Thurrock and the Saints entertain Stanford at home. A tough start to the season for all three sides.