A FUND-RAISING drive has been launched by Hawick RFC in an attempt to raise £50,000 for the cash-strapped club.
The Hawick 500 initiative is the brain child of new president Rory Bannerman who is appealing for help in financing the “next phase” of development at Mansfield Park.
The local solicitor has written to a group of around one hundred people asking if they will make a one-off donation of £500 to progress plans by head coach Phil Leck to bring through elite players every year.
Hawick, who were relegated from Scottish club rugby’s top flight last season, have since lost several players to other Borders clubs who are offering more lucrative financial packages.
Mr Bannerman said: “We need philanthropists, captains of industry, warm hearted people and enthusiasts of all types to pull together to help Hawick RFC in its struggle to return to the top of their game.
“We are very proud to add Stuart Hogg to the long list of rugby greats who have represented both the club and our nation this season but there is always the fear that the ‘conveyor belt’ of fantastic young talent will stop turning out the heroes in green of tomorrow if we are not able to afford to keep apace even with other less celebrated Border clubs.”
And despite the current financial climate he hoped the initiative would be a success.
He added: “I perfectly well appreciate that funds may not be available for such a donation and our sponsorship secretary Charlie Oliver is always willing to engage with those who wish to make smaller donations.
“However, I would ask that you seriously consider making this one off donation and becoming a member of a select group who can build a brighter future for the club within the town, particularly at its hour of need when finances are very greatly stretched and are problematic for our great club.”
Mr Bannerman revealed that two donations have already been received.
Those who contribute will have their name (unless anonymity is sought) inscribed on a suitable roll of honour for supporting the “development fund” at Hawick RFC clubrooms.
For more information contact Mr Bannerman on firstname.lastname@example.org