A club whose alumni include world-class players like Dave Denton (Worcester Warriors) and Jamie Farndale (Edinburgh Rugby, Scotland 7s), BATs has played an integral part in the support and development of youth rugby in north Edinburgh since 2004.
We’re delighted to announce that Edinburgh Self Storage will now be supporting BATs Rugby and the fantastic work that they do for youth rugby in the city. We hope that with our new sponsorship, the BATs team will continue to grow, making the sport more accessible to young people in the community and developing Scotland’s next generation of senior players.
But who are BATs and how do they support Edinburgh’s young rugby players?
Who Are BATs?
BATs (Broughton, Accies and Trinity) was formed in 2004, when – following a significant drop in numbers in youth rugby in Edinburgh – Broughton High School, Edinburgh Academical (Accies) and Trinity Academy came together to combine their youth rugby sections.
The team’s vision is to build the best community youth rugby club in Scotland and develop a regular stream of youth players moving into senior rugby.
The BATs Team
Ian Berthinussen (Head Development Officer) and Callum Black (Assistant Development Officer) who make up the core BATs team also aim to take on a Modern Apprentice each year, funding dependent. This programme allows an early school leaver (S4, S5 or S6) to gain qualifications through on the job coaching and weekly in-college learning.
“Ideally, we’d like to have a development officer and a modern apprentice in each of the high schools we work with.”
Assistant Development Officer, BATs Rugby
Today, the club works extensively with local schools and within the community to promote the sport of rugby and develop Edinburgh’s next generation of young players, coaches and referees.
How Are BATs Supporting Youth Rugby in Edinburgh?
From their base at the Edinburgh Academical (Accies) Football Club, BATs work in conjunction with Accies’ own youth section to provide regular weekly training and game fixtures for children from Primary 1 through to under 18s.
The club is now active in five secondary schools and 13 primary schools across north Edinburgh – but aims to make rugby accessible to everyone. Along with their curriculum sessions and after school clubs the team run annual rugby camps and touch rugby for families throughout the summer.
Next Steps for BATs Rugby
BATs is run by a small team who’ve already had an impressive impact on youth and community rugby in north Edinburgh. The club relies on funding from Scottish Rugby, public support and private sponsorship.
With increased funding, the team hopes to:
- Increase the number of rugby development staff in schools
- Expand existing programmes in Edinburgh Academy and Fettis Academy
- Improve girls’ rugby development in conjunction with the Broughton FC Women’s Rugby team
How Can I Support BATs Rugby?
BATs relies on Scottish Rugby funding along with public support and the help of volunteers to run its weekly training nights, matches and out of school activities. You can find out more about supporting the club or volunteering with BATs here.
How Can I Get Involved with BATs Rugby?
BATs are based in the Edinburgh Academical Football Club and also work in several primary and secondary schools throughout north Edinburgh.
If BATs aren’t in your school yet, the team encourages local children from Primary 1 and upwards to come along to the Edinburgh Accies ground and get involved. Edinburgh Accies have a strong primary school section which caters for younger children before they move onto BATs in S1.
Training sessions run Wednesday 6.30 – 7.30 pm at the EAFC Raeburn Place ground.
Edinburgh Self Storage are delighted to be supporting BATs Rugby and hope that our new sponsorship will help make rugby accessible to more young people in Edinburgh.