The England Touch Association (ETA) and Global Beach Rugby have today announced an exciting agreement to work together for mutual benefit.
The ETA has undergone significant growth over the last 12 months, using the lockdown as an opportunity to re-structure the organisation, develop new partnerships and put the foundations in place to springboard into a post-Covid era.
This has been reflected in significant increases in participation across the country and clubs proactively working together for friendly fixtures and tournaments, in addition to the half-dozen National Touch Series weekends for clubs, three Nationals weekends for regions, and Home Nations Autumn International Series which will form the backbone of the Touch Rugby calendar in 2021.
Meanwhile Global Beach Rugby has set its sights on becoming an exciting new series of events, starting in the north west this coming September and then expanding to elsewhere in the UK and overseas in coming years.
Global Beach Rugby’s events will feature music, sun, sport and sand, with tournaments for male and female contact teams and Mixed Touch Rugby teams, and the organisers have a commitment to innovative outreach programmes in the areas surrounding host venues aimed at getting more people active with an oval ball in their hands.
ETA Chief Executive Chris Simon says that this new agreement has plenty of potential.
“We have been looking to develop exciting partnerships, such as those which we’ve already announced with the British Heart Foundation and London Irish RFC, to name just two, and Global Beach Rugby fits into this category,” he said.
“The events themselves will be proper festivals of sport, fun and music, and we’re looking forward to working with Global Beach Rugby on their Touch Rugby offering, both in England and internationally.
“Ultimately if we can work together to get more people active by using a version of rugby, then we will have achieved a springboard for further growth.”
Global Beach Rugby’s Managing Director Jason Harborow says that the agreement represents his organisation’s ambitions to succeed.
“We want to be working with governing bodies who are willing to think and work outside the box, and England Touch fits the bill perfectly,” he said. “Touch Rugby has expanded massively in recent years, with increased media coverage such as live streaming on the BBC Sport website, and if anything the lockdown has become a springboard into even quicker growth and participation.
“This reflects the positive attitude of Chris Simon and his leadership team, and I’m confident that we will quickly have the programmes in place to increase participation and awareness of Touch Rugby and Beach Rugby in host towns and surrounding areas, making both of our products a success.”
To find out more about Global Beach Rugby head to www.global-beachrugby.com