The National Lottery partners with rugby greats to celebrate grassroots funding across the UK
25th September 2023
As part of a celebration of grassroots rugby and ahead of key matches during the Rugby World Cup, The National Lottery partnered with rugby greats from across the four nations to highlight the £30 million a week raised by players for good causes and showcase funding for local clubs.
Former Scotland captain Rory Lawson visited Falkirk RFC, former club of current international player Finn Russell, to record a special good luck message ahead of the tournament and meet some stars of the future. Falkirk RFC received £125,000 of National Lottery funding from Sport Scotland, which has gone towards upgrading their pavilion to include a gym and six changing rooms.
Matt Dawson MBE, ex-England captain and scrum half, visited Saracens RFC the former club to a host of current internationals including England captain Owen Farrell, to record a special good luck message ahead of their match, and meet some of the people who help keep the club running. Saracens and their foundation have received £64,000 of National Lottery funding from Sport England, which has gone towards rugby programme and coaching sessions designed to encourage more people to take up the sport.
Alun Wyn Jones OBE, former Welsh captain and British and Irish Lions legend visited Waunarlwydd RFC in his home-city of Swansea, the former club of current international fullback Liam Williams, and prop Nicky Smith as part of a campaign celebrating National Lottery investment into rugby union. Waunarlwydd RFC received £145,000 of National Lottery funding from Sport Wales, which has gone towards coaching, training equipment and pitch improvements.
Ulster legend Stephen Ferris, former Ireland flanker, visited local club Bangor RFC to send a message of support to the Ireland team ahead of their clash against reigning champions South Africa. Bangor RFC is one of 50 local clubs governed by Ulster Rugby, which has received £605,000 of National Lottery funding over the last two years from Sport Northern Ireland. Funding has gone towards participation programmes for children and young people, increasing participation and support for women and girls, coaching and refereeing workshops, supporting high-performance athlete pathways to National squads and disability programmes.