More than 120 people joined ‘The BIG Heave’ at Daventry Rugby Club on Saturday.
They put finishing touches to a new patio and generally spruce up the club’s facilities.
The BIG Heave was launched in conjunction with the NatWest Rugby Force weekend, where clubs up and down the country could apply for a £500 grant to help tidy up their facilities.
However, Daventry RFC decided to go one better and put forward a plan to the England RFU to replace an unsightly area with a brand new 600 sq metre block paved patio.
Project co-ordinator Phil Grisewood explained: “Even after we secured an additional grant of £2,000 from England RFU, we realised that our project was going to be ambitious. We estimated that the cost of the new patio would be in the region of £25,000 so if we were going to be successful we needed the club and the local business community to get behind us.”
Thanks to the initial launch of ‘The BIG Heave’ in the Daventry Express, interest from local businesses began to gain momentum. Travis Perkins, Howden’s Joinery, TBS and Jewson’s all donated building materials to the project, and other companies such as Lifting Equipment Supplies, ISS Facility Services and SDC Special Projects, also contributed.
Mr Grisewood said: “To make the project a real success we were keen to engage our business, player and supporter community in the improvement of Daventry’s rugby club.
“Rugby is a great team game and our team came together when it counted. After securing the block paving for the project former player Dave Collins stepped up and co-ordinated the logistics to move tonnes of materials, some from as far away as Cheshire, to help ensure the project could be delivered within its tight budget.
“Local builder, coach and referee Johnny Smith of AJ Design & Build undertook the ground works and managed the project on site, with local father and son duo Chris & Darren Duff laying the block paving.”
Saturday was the final part of the project and over 120 people turned up to clean the club house, paint the changing rooms and storage containers, sand and paint benches, and generally tidy up around the grounds.
Mr Grisewood said: “We had mums and dads with their children, senior players, retired players, supporters, coaches and representatives from local business all lending a hand to make Daventry RFC a club that the community can be proud of.
“Not only did we succeed in our ambitious plan but thanks to the hard work of our local community we’re starting to see interest in further investment in the club and its facilities. In fact we’re already starting to make plans for ‘The BIG Heave 2’.”