Rugby

Plympton Victoria are hoping for a bright future after securing a new home

PLYMPTON Victoria are hoping the future is bright for them after securing themselves a new home.

The Devon Merit Table side were suddenly made homeless last summer after failing to agree a new deal with the Plymouth Gladiators speedway team over the use of the rugby pitch at St Boniface Arena in Marsh Mills, which had been the club’s ground for a number of years.

They spent last season sharing facilities with Devon One side OPMs at King George V Playing Fields in Elburton, but after months of effort, Plym Vic have secured the use of Underwood Recreation Field, which is bang in the heart of Plympton.

The council have agreed to turn an unused football pitch into a rugby field and have installed a new boiler in the changing rooms now they know they are going to be used.

Plym Vic are looking forward to making it their home as they celebrate the 25th anniversary of the merger of Plympton RFC and Victoria RFC.

And to cap a great few weeks, Plym Vic have also been awarded their RFU Club Accreditation.

“We have been playing our rugby at Elburton’s King George V pitches, with some great support from OPM RFC, but have been looking to find a more permanent home,” said team manager Chris Hunt.

“We have been working with the (the council’s) street scene team, strategic planning team, local councillors and RFU development officers and we have been able to secure the use of Underwood Recreation Field as a rugby pitch. That has been a long-term aspiration since the days before the amalgamation of Plympton RFC and Victoria RFC.

“This will help stabilise the club after a turbulent couple of years and now we can start to build a legacy in our home town.

“Being in the heart of Plympton will help raise the profile of our club and hopefully build some more bonds with the town whose name we bear. We have already forged sponsorship links with The Post Office Inn, Achievers Nursery, DW O’ Hare LTD, Jamie English Rendering Services and LJ Plumbing Services and also hope to attract some new players to the Plym Vic family.

“We now just need to settle in, make the pitch home and get on with the new season.”

Hunt added: “This year will be a big one for the club. It is the 25th anniversary of the amalgamation of Plympton RFC and Victoria RFC, we have just been awarded our RFU Accreditation and we have moved into a new home.

“The council has been doing some sterling work getting the facility ready for us and we have held our delayed NatWest RugbyForce Day using the opportunity to give the changing rooms a coat of paint and a tidy up.

“But the real hard work starts now – getting ourselves moved in and then starting the preparation for the upcoming season, which with new teams in the Devon Merit Two South & West it will be a challenging one, but the lads are raring to go and build on the modest successes of last season.”

Plym Vic have already boosted their player numbers ahead of the new season.

“I think I’ve registered five new players and hopefully there will be a couple more,” said Hunt.

“Last season we didn’t set the world on fire but we put in some good performances and that certainly helps attracts new players.”

Plym Vic are set to play their first match at their new home on August 31 when the entertain Tamar Saracens II in a pre-season game.

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