I just wanted to take the opportunity to drop everyone a quick note to wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and hope that we all have a 2021 that brings more cheer than 2020 did.

Whether you are a player, a coach, a social member, a parent, or just someone who loves coming to the rugby club, this can only be described as a funny old year. However, despite the problems and privations that the coronavirus pandemic has caused, there have still been many positives. For example, this will be the first season in the history of the club, when every team at every level from P1 to 1st XV remains unbeaten at Christmas: a great achievement.

On a slightly more serious note, we have managed to maintain training sessions for large parts of the season and thanks must go to all the coaches for their efforts in making that happen. Huge thanks also must go to Gavin McQuillan for dealing with all the Covid-related risk assessments and procedures that have been necessary to keep everyone safe.

Adult training has been a bit disrupted, but we have still been able to run some productive and fun sessions, while mini (Hunters) and midi (U14, U16 and U18) training has continued on a more or less ‘normal’ basis. Not only that but there has been an increase in our player numbers throughout the minis and midis, which is fantastic to see and we welcome all those who have joined our Penicuik rugby family this year.

Turning back to the effects of coronavirus though, there is no escaping the fact that 2020 has affected us all deeply. We have lost some dearly-loved and greatly-respected friends in the course of the pandemic and our thoughts go out to those who will be facing a first Christmas without them. There will be many others of us feeling the strain too, and maybe not showing it openly.

We are a rugby family and I urge you all to do what you can to reach out to one another just to say “Hi. How are you?“. That call might make someone’s day. Just knowing that there’s someone else out there thinking about them will make a difference.

I hope that we’ll soon be able to meet up and do all this stuff in person. The vaccine offers us the first glimmer that this is coming, and when we do, we’ll be planning a serious party at the club (where you’ll hopefully notice some positive changes to the internal fabric of the building – more about that next month). In the meantime, please do all that you can to keep yourselves and others safe. Have a good break, be kind to yourselves and to others and be there for each other.

It is the Penicuik Rugby way.

Happy Christmas.

Club President