Rugby players will be going to great lengths to raise money to get their new clubhouse over the line – and to help tackle motor neuron disease.
Ross Sutherland Rugby Club, based in Invergordon, is launching its March into May event this weekend and has set a target to bring in £50,000 for both causes.
It is inspired by DoddieAid, an inter-district fundraiser in support of My Name’5 Doddie Foundation set up by former Scottish international Doddie Weir who was diagnosed with MND in 2017 and helps people living with the condition.
March into May will be held from March 28 to May 1.
Participants will pledge to complete a set number of miles walking, running, cycling or swimming for the challenge.
The club has the largest catchment area of any rugby club in the UK and is hoping to get support for the event across the area.
Money raised will be split between My Name’5 Doddie Foundation and a campaign to complete a new clubhouse which is £50,000 short of the required £600,000.
The building, which includes a function room, new bar, club shop, four changing rooms and a full length balcony overlooking the main pitch, was due to open last year but has been delayed due to the pandemic. It is hoped it will now be ready for start of the new season in August.
The new facilities will help the club deliver their development plan to expand the club’s reach within the community, both in offering improved access to grassroots rugby and promote the clubhouse as a place for community use.
Club president John Scott said: “The clubhouse project has been a challenge recently and the fundraiser will provide a nudge to get the job done.
“While the event will raise money for two charities it will also raise awareness of the club as a focal point for people in the area.
“Covid has given us a chance to re-focus what we’re doing. It’s not just about getting kids and adults playing rugby, we’re even more community-minded now and it gives people across the area a chance to come together and enjoy each other’s company.”
Participants in the March into May event will pay £25 to sign up and includes a free social membership for the rugby club for the 2021/22 season, reduced hire of the new facilities and access to apply for international tickets.
Teams representing Black Isle and Inverness, Easter Ross, Wester Ross and Skye, Sutherland and Exiles will go head-to-head to see which team covers the most miles and raises the most money for the charities.