The oldest women’s rugby union team in the West Midlands is celebrating securing a new kit deal for next season.
Old Leamingtonians Women’s RFC, which was formed in 1988, will have the logo of AC Lloyd emblazoned on the front of their kits after agreeing a one-year contract with the Warwick-based business.
The property development and investment company is extending its involvement in the Bericote Road club after sponsoring the senior men’s teams shirts for the last two seasons.
Former players of the Old Leamingtonians women’s team, whose ages currently range from 17 to 60, include Olympian Heather Fisher, who represented England at two Women’s World Cups, former Scotland captain Tracy Balmer-Longstone, ex-Ireland international Therese Kennedy and Lois Thomas, who played for England sevens and 15s.
Gemma Lewis, Chair of Old Leamingtonians Ladies, said the deal meant more because the sponsors were from the local community.
“We are already looking forward to the season starting again in September – Coronavirus permitting – when we will be wearing our new kit,” she said.
“Our girls’ section is rapidly growing and we have around 30 women players in the senior team with a real mix of ages and half of Warwickshire’s county team recently featured our players which underlines the talent we have in our squad.
“It has been three years since we had a new kit so the current shirts and shorts have seen better days because they have become discoloured with us rolling around in the mud so the players were absolutely delighted when I told them AC Lloyd was sponsoring a new kit for us.
“The next campaign will be our 32nd season playing competitively which makes us the oldest team in the West Midlands and it will be great to be running onto the field in a pristine new kit – even though it won’t stay that way for long!
“It is great that local firms help out clubs like ours that hopefully are a real community benefit.”
Peter Beddoes, chairman of AC Lloyd, said the community-focused business was proud to be sponsoring a new kit for Old Leamingtonians women’s team.
He said: “Community is very much at the heart of our developments and our business and we are looking forward to extending our involvement in Old Leamingtonians.
“They are a club that has the town of Leamington at its core and they have a similar ethos as our business.
“There are more and more women and girls joining Old Leamingtonians as the popularity of the sport grows and we wish them every success for the new season.”