WHITCHURCH Rugby Club head into 2023 full of optimism following a strong end to to the calendar year.

The Reds have won four of their last six games in the second division of the West Midlands League to climb to seventh in the standings.

The club have enjoyed a winter revival following a poor start to the campaign.

The club underwent a managerial change in the summer with coach Noel Speed stepping down to be replaced by Steve Brown.

Brown arrived having coached all over the world, including Luxembourg, Malta and New Zealand and in his native England at Worcester RFC, Tenbury RFC and Cannock RFC.

However he departed the club following a poor start to the campaign with the Reds investing their faith in Max Pridmore as the 23 year old became the youngest coach in the league and one of the youngest in English rugby.

Despite a losing start, Pridmore has since masterminded three league wins to renew hope the club could push on in 2023 with Crewe and Droitwich each defeated before the thrashing of Hereford at the start of the month.

However the club has endured a frustrating month having not played since their 41-0 victory over Hereford on December 3.


The Reds and their fans will have to be patient with the league now entering hiatus for its winter break before returning to action on at league leaders Old Halesonians on January 7.

Chairman Dave Windsor insisted the club remained on target to achieve their pre-season objectives with all eyes on the next big game when the club travelled to the leaders.

He said: “We are currently in seventh position in the league but we are hoping to make the top four or five by end of season in preparation for the Papa John knockout competition in March.”

Head coach Max Pridmore is also looking for more players to boost the senior sides with anyone interested invited to training on Tuesday and Thursday nights after the New Year or look on the website for contact details.

The club is working hard to ensure the next generation of Whitchurch rugby talent is developed and nurtured.

The club is actively looking for new players of any age from 16 onwards and is working with Jack Brown, head of physical education at Sir John Talbot School who is now head coach of the club’s colts side.

Meanwhile the club’s second string returns to action against Barton Under Needwood on January 7 in division three of the Midlands West (North) League.

The second string have struggled to get enough numbers for a full squad on several weekends but captain Matt Grindley reserved praise for all the players and especially the five youngsters from last year’s colts for turning out each week who have shown grit and determination even with some heavy defeats.

The club is also pressing ahead off the pitch as it continues to strive toward excellence and ensuring its players of all age groups have access to the best facilities available to boost their development.

Windsor said: “Off the pitch the club is organising fund raising ideas to raise funds to have new LED floodlights to make training safer and will be more efficient.

“There is a club end of season ball on the May 6 if anyone is interested with all information available on then club website.”