It’s great to have the opportunity to give your team the wholehearted support of this family as you begin a venture that has the continued existence of Newport Rugby Football Club to the fore. Thank you for the foresight and the enormous amount of unseen work that everybody involved in setting up this trust has contributed.
I have supported the club for 42 years since the age of ten. Ten of those years were spent in England telling everyone what a history we had. My first really significant game as a memory was v New Zealand in 1963 what a start !! (it was wonderful to enjoy that day again courtesy of the supporters club in October). It has been a love affair since that time. My father had filled me with stories about the great teams of the 50s and the moral victory over the Springboks in 1961. The sixties were a wonderful time to begin supporting the team – Welsh and Lions caps galore, Welsh Championships (pity there was not a Heineken Cup in those days !!) and our highly enjoyable mastery of the sevens game. How could we fail with players such as Dai and Stuart Watkins, Brian Jones, Brian Price, Byron Thomas, Bryn Meredith, Glyn Davidge, Bob Prosser etc.
Favourite player over the years Del Haines (never understood why he was not capped). Jason Forster is following in his tracks.
Most memorable game well what a difficult one ‘63 All Blacks, ’69 Boks, 1969 4th game v Cardiff (Jarrett hit upright and we would have beaten them 4 times !!!! perhaps this year as Newport RFC and NGD), 1977 Cup Final, Cardiff in cup during Gary T’s time after we had lost at Ebbw Vale. All those games are in the list but the winner was v Abertillery in the early sixties at home (us with Dai, Brian, Stuart them with Pask, Morgan). It was the first game I saw them lose, as a young boy those types of things are not supposed to happen. I believe it was about 8-6 (I’m sure Sorcerer can let me know). I can still feel the disappointment now with my father saying well these things happen. I said yes you are used to that because you have followed the County as well for years ! But this is different this is NEWPORT RUGBY FOOTBALL CLUB.
The tradition has followed with my son now 15 having watched them for the last 7 years. He can take most defeats, except to Cardiff, glad to now that feelings will continue to run deep into the next generation. I have veen had my daughter working in the ticket office during holiday breaks to get a feel for the place and perhaps join – still working on that one. My wife always asks how they have got on!!
As a club we have been unfortunate that the lean years corresponded with increased media interest and our place in the upper levels of club rugby were not recognised yet the short periods of success by some other clubs have even resulted in them being named in the same sentence as us!! Put simply following Newport RFC makes me very proud whether in the depths of defeat of the heights of success. You support your team which is exactly what this trust will do. I can remember on many occasion saying something must be down to make us secure - me saying that would not help. The difference is that the people involved in setting up this trust have not just said something must be down but got up and done it. We must all thank you for that.