Southwark Tigers, the first junior inner city rugby city club in the country, is fundraising for a new minibus to replace one stolen in May, writes Siva Thangarajah…
After a public appeal failed to find the missing bus, club chair Vernon Neve-Dunn began a drive to raise the £35,000 needed for a new bus before the next season starts in September.
“Right now, most of our practices are at Burgess Park, but when the new rugby season starts in September, a minibus will be necessary to transport kids outside of London, where the matches are held,” Mr Neve-Dunn said.
But as well as being unable to travel, he said his young players also ‘felt cheated’ at having their bus stolen.
“It really upset the kids; it’s something tangible that they’ve lost,” he told the News.
“A lot of the children’s families at the club don’t have transport, so we also used the minibus on summer camping trips to take them out of London. Now we can’t do that.
“Instead, we’re probably going to run the camp near Aylesbury Estate, where a lot of the children are from.
“That’s a shame because they’re not getting the chance to go to new places now.”
But Mr Neve-Dunn is keen to see the positive side as supporters have rallied round.
“We’ve catalysed support for the club –we’ve got a lot of community support so there’s some positive impact as well,” he said.
“The Southwark Tigers are going to come back roaring.
“We’re raring to go, to raise enough money for the bus, and ready to start the matches in September.”