The Rugby World Cup provided inspiration for a festival organised by Erewash School Sport Partnership.
More than 100 primary school pupils took part in a rubgy mega-fest at West Park in Long Eaton which was supported by coaches and players from Long Eaton RFC.
Schools that took part included Ashbrook Junior, Brooklands, Dovedale, Draycott, Harrington Junior, Stanley Common and St Laurence. Leaders from Wilsthorpe Community School, in Long Eaton, also helped to run the event.
Pupils played games including rob the nest, ball touch, break-out tag, five pass and end ball.
Craig Berry, from Long Eaton RFC, said it was great to see so many youngsters so enthusiastic about rugby.
He said: “We had around a dozen volunteer coaches helping out at the event, both men and women. Girls’ rugby is really thriving here at the moment which is good to see.
“We tried to make a link with the Rugby World Cup and each school was encouraged to adopt a team which competed in Japan. There was so much interest in the World Cup it was about trying to capitalise on that.
“We want children to come here and experience what rugby is all about. What we hope is that some of the children who are already at Long Eaton RFC might play for the first team one day, it’s all about progression. But developing the child and their core values is just as important. We teach children about teamwork, respect, sportsmanship and discipline.”
Rhian Lilley, Erewash School Sport Partnership strategic development manager, thanked Long Eaton RFC for helping to make the mega-fest such a fantastic event.
She said: “The children who took part were so enthusiastic and I think the link with the Rugby World Cup really helped. Some pupils had decorated their own shirts and we were teaching groups of them how to do the haka. Hopefully some of the children who took part in the mega-fest might be feeling inspired to try rugby again and come down to one of the sessions run by Long Eaton RFC.”
Long Eaton RFC holds mini sessions for young children and more information can be found by visiting
Notes to editors: Erewash School Sport Partnership is a group of 45 schools working together to develop PE and sport opportunities for all young people. Its core priority is to improve the quality and quantity of PE and sport in schools. The partnerships aims to engage, motivate and include as many young people as possible in a positive PE and sport experience.


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