The key to operating a successful facilities development programme to the benefit of all clubs in Berkshire is for all the clubs to work closely with the Facilities Manager of Berkshire County RFU, Steve Cullen, our RFU Area Facilities Manager, Jason Bowers, and our RFU RDO, Dan Whiteman.
Berkshire County RFU is mandated by the RFU to produce a rolling 4-year plan of the projects that the clubs want to undertake. The funding from the RFU via grants and loans is not limitless, so Berkshire RFU has to prioritise projects funded via this route each season based on need. The RFU also has campaigns that arise at certian times e.g. the Lead Up & Legacy projects covering Social Spaces and Floodlight Upgrades.
Obviously there are other sources of funding that clubs can attract and the RFU team is in place to assist the clubs secure funding from some of these avenues.
Each club having a short, medium and longterm vision for their faciities is also extremely valuable in attracting the support of the club members. If they can see how the management of the club sees their facilities developing over time. Fundraising from members is then known to be more focussed and successful.
There are instances where issues arise that are unexpected - from a cooker blowing up, a kitchen not passing council environmental requirements and facing closure to a fire in a clubhouse (Hungerford RFC pictured from a few years ago). The RFU has contingency plans for instances such as these - as can be exampled by the assistance given to clubs in the 2014 floods in some parts of the country.
Updated 3rd June 2014.