by the Welsh Guards Rugby Reunion Club Chairman, Lieutenant Colonel Alun Bowen.
I am delighted to write with an update on the WGRRC. The Club continues in good form, with increased membership supported by a loyal and extremely generous group of VPs. The WGRRC now has a mission and objectives (noted below) and you will notice a new direction for the Club, which is to focus on maximising WG attendance at WGRRC events. We are a Regimental family and our veterans, regardless of time served, provide the largest element and WGRRC events will continue to use rugby as a force for the good of all, from Guardsman to Field Marshal.
The 2017 dinner seems a distant yet extremely fond memory where we were entertained by Rowland Phillips (Wales Women’s Coach). You may be aware that following the success of that dinner, the generosity of our VPs, a substantial contribution from Emma Willis (VP) (Style for Soldiers (S4S)) and a donation from Regimental HQ, the WGRRC Committee arranged for 250 tickets for the Wales v Georgia rugby match. We were royally entertained in the Angel Hotel by the Cardiff Male Voice Choir and a question & answer session with our dear friend Ryan Jones. Emma Willis gave a talk on S4S and we remain indebted to Emma for her work for injured veterans; she is both humble and dedicated and we are very privileged to have her in our ranks.
Looking forward to 2019 and beyond – the VP (Vice Presidents) scheme will continue and if any members would like to join the scheme please contact Darrell Jones - see here. The VP scheme provides the Club with much needed funds to not only put on a splendid dinner but to also support the new WGRRC mission and objectives. We will continue with the dinner every two years, keeping it at the Stradey Park Hotel. The relationship with the Stradey Park Hotel that has developed over many years sees us taking over most of the hotel rooms and receiving numerous discounts. Having considered alternative options for Cardiff, North Wales and Pirbright, it is clear that moving the dinner venue would see a significant increase in the dinner price which is not in our best interests as we believe attendance would fall. Our 2019 guest speaker will be the hugely talented Sean Holley, ex Ospreys coach and current TV pundit – standby to laugh!
We will also use the WGRRC as a platform to provide support to our large veteran community. Following the 2019 dinner, Help 4 Heroes and the WG Regimental Veterans Officer (RVO), Mr Jiffy Myers MBE, will give a talk on the Saturday morning. The talk will provide information on veterans’ support and this is an avenue the Committee are particularly keen to pursue. We also aim to support a small number of youth rugby teams through sponsoring team trophies, and it is hoped this will provide a small, but tangible, link into our recruiting efforts.
Looking forward to a wonderful dinner and my very best wishes to you all.
WGRRC Mission and Objectives
“To gather together Welsh Guardsmen of all ranks, serving and veterans, using rugby as a common bond. The WGRRC aims to create an atmosphere where people can share experiences and help support one another”
Objectives: Primary Focus
Veterans’ Mental Health
Recruiting Biennial Dinner
Dinner Details 2019:
maximise support for Welsh Guardsmen, serving and veterans, through attendance at WGRRC events
link with veterans’ charities and provide WGRRC supported events focused on veterans’ mental health
reach out to local communities to support Welsh Guards recruiting
odd years (2019, 2021 etc) - hold the WGRRC biennial dinner in the Stradey Park Hotel, Llanelli
even years (2020, 2022 etc) - run a WGRRC rugby orientated event, with maximum WG attendance
Details of the 2019 Dinner can be found here