News Archive

Category: Refeereing

NLD Young Match Officials Courses in October!

October 1st, 2017 by

Great News! Young people within NLD have the opportunity to become a part of the Young Match Officials Programme run by NLD RFU & the NLD Referees Society in partnership with England Rugby.

There will be two courses that will run during October that are specifically aimed at young people within NLD that will be FREE to attend!

Level 2 – Refereeing the 15 a side game
UPDATE – This course is now FULLY BOOKED.  To go onto a waitlist or to hear about future courses please email [email protected].
Tuesday 24th, Wednesday 25th & Thursday 26th October
9.30am – 3.30pm
This course is ideal for young people who have either already completed the Level 1 course or who are fairly confident & feel ready to start refereeing the 15 a side game.

Level 1 – Refereeing Children in Rugby
Thursday 26th October
9.30am – 1.30pm
This course is a perfect introduction to refereeing rugby and will offer the skills & understanding to start developing your refereeing.

Places are limited and are available on a first come first served basis – to book click on the links above.


  • Fantastic opportunity to work with other young people in the sport and develop as an official
  • Open to ALL Young People aged 14-21years
  • Develop your Officiating skills through training and mentoring
  • Grow your knowledge, experience & confidence as a player as well as an official


  • Work towards and complete your Level 2 Referee Course
  • Officiate at a number of fixtures throughout the Season, supporting your club, school and RFU competitions
  • Young Match Officials Kit Package
  • Additional Rewards through Young Rugby Ambassador Programme
  • Monitor your progress in your Official RFU Log Book
  • Fantastic addition to any CV!

Any questions at all don’t hesitate to get in touch with Nicole Brown – [email protected] / 01636 640800.

NLD Funding Opportunties

September 19th, 2017 by

We are pleased to now invite applications from clubs to access NLD funding for the 2017-18 season.

As some of you may be aware the NLD PFR (Planning, Funding & Reporting) Plan outlines the CB’s budget for each season.  The budget itself is split down into various key areas covering the RFU’s Key Drivers and is available to view in full here.

We are now inviting clubs to submit applications for access to the funding that is available to bid for, all of the details of which are available on the attached information sheet.

Expression of Interest PFR v1

PFR Club Information 2017-18 v1

Please encourage your club to apply for funding by completing the attached application form and returning it to me (with all of the accompanying signatures) but Monday 9th October at the latest.  Applications can be either emailed or posted to NLD RFU, Northgate Business Centre, 38 Northgate, Newark, Notts, NG24 1EZ.

Applications will be considered by each of the budget holders and the relevant committees and decisions will be made as quickly as possible.

If you have any queries regarding the process please do not hesitate to get in touch with either your local Rugby Development Officer, Jeff Mapp or Nicole Brown.

This is a fantastic opportunity for your club to access the funding to develop grassroots rugby within NLD – please make sure you take advantage of it!!

NLD Referees Society Training Events

September 6th, 2017 by

The NLD Referees Society hold training meetings throughout the year and these are open to any Coaches or Club Referees who would like to attend to further their knowledge of the management of the game on the pitch.  You do not have to be a member of the Society to go along – all are welcome.

The central meetings are always held at the Saracens Head in Southwell and start at 7:30 pm, ending at 9:00 pm

19-Sep-17 Training Evening The Scrum Mansfield RFC
17-Oct-17 Local Training Evening Mellish RFC – Lincoln RFC – Derby RFC
21-Nov-17 Training Evening Topic TBA Saracens Head, Southwell
19-Dec-17 Training Evening Topic TBA Saracens Head, Southwell
16-Jan-18 Training Evening Topic TBA Saracens Head, Southwell
20-Feb-18 Training Evening Topic TBA Saracens Head, Southwell
20-Mar-18 Training Evening Topic TBA Saracens Head, Southwell

NLD YMO Appointed to England Rugby National Youth Council

September 6th, 2017 by

As the new season approaches and pre-season training comes to a close, there are plenty of things going on behind the scenes to get the season up and running. This isn’t only on a constituent body level, but also on a national scale.

One of these activities that was going on behind the scenes was recruitment for the RFU National Youth Council. The RFU National Youth Council is a voluntary consultative body, which is made up of 12 16-25 year olds from across the sport. The National Youth Council has been up and running since 2014 and in that time, it has developed the Young Rugby Ambassadors Programme. The council focuses on a variety of different projects and issues across the game such as:

  • The retention and recruitment of young volunteers, players and referees within the game.
  • Developing and leading the Young Rugby Ambassadors Programme.
  • Being ambassadors for the RFU and the sport across a variety of events and conferences.
  • Consulting and advising across the RFU on programmes and projects which have an impact on young people within the game.

Three new council members were added to the National Youth Council this September, these were Jazmin Wones (Norfolk), Michael Kirby (Buckinghamshire) and James Phillips (NLD).

James Phillips is currently the Young Match Officials Programme Lead within NLD, as well as being a referee for NLDRFURS. James has also conducted over 100 hours of volunteering on the Young Rugby Ambassadors Programme. James will sit on the RFU National Youth Council for 2 years, where he will look to shape the future of rugby for 14-25 year olds across the game. James said,

“I am very excited to be joining the National Youth Council at such an exciting time. England Rugby is at its best point for years and with an increase in women’s rugby of 215% over the last 4 years the game is growing more and more. Rugby has always been a passion of mine and it is a great honour to be able to work with NLD and the RFU to help improve and develop rugby for generations to come.”

If you are interested or want more information on the Young Match Officials Programme within NLD or about the Young Rugby Ambassadors programme then please get in touch with James on the following emails: [email protected] or [email protected]

Global Law Trials

August 23rd, 2017 by

The World Rugby Executive Committee has approved the addition of six law amendments to the programme of global law trials following positive trials in specific international competitions this year. They will debut in full from 1 August, 2017 in the northern hemisphere and from 1 January, 2018 in the south.

Click HERE for more information.

The amendments, which relate to the scrum (Law 20) and tackle/ruck (Laws 15 and 16), are aimed at making the game simpler to play and referee as well as further promoting player welfare. They have been approved following extensive game data analysis as well as player, coach, match official and union feedback from the tournaments in which these six aspects of law were trialled.

NLD Referees Society Pre Season Meeting

June 30th, 2017 by

The first NLD Referee’s Society Training Meeting of the 2017-18 season will be on 15th August at 7.30pm.

The meeting will discuss any new Law Variations, interpretations etc which is usually of interest to the Coaching community and anyone who is interested is invited to attend.

The meeting will be held at the Saracen’s Head Hotel in Southwell.

NLD Game Development Conference

June 14th, 2017 by

Sunday 10th June marked an exciting day in the NLD RFU calendar, the NLD Game Development Conference which was once again kindly supported by the Sir Anthony Wharton Trust. This year, the conference was held at Samworth Church Academy in Mansfield. With over 50 coaches, referees and players, the conference was well attended with a range of different ages.

There was an exciting line-up for those who attended including Ian Costello, Head Coach of Nottingham Rugby, who delivered an inspiring talk on his coaching philosophy. James Phillips and Andy Smith who provided an insight into the Young Match Officials (YMO) programme & John Widdowson who provided a wealth of information with a development module.

James Phillips and Andy Smith delivered a presentation on the YMO programme, detailing what it involves and how to get involved. In addition to this, they provided information on the upcoming events that will be taking place in 2017. Furthermore, a round of applause for the level 1s and for the presentations that took place for the following YMOs on completion of their level 2 courses:

Level 1: Shannon Hutchinson, Keegan Orne-Boulton and Jodie Baker

Level 2: Maddie Crofts, Tom Watson, Will Shennan and James Bridle

A copy of the YMO Presentation can be downloaded here.

A copy of the Video Analysis Presentation can be downloaded here.

The next element of the conference was the delivery of a coaching module by John Widdowson who is the England Rugby Match Official Development Officer. The module delivered insightful information on the tackle, and the key talking points surrounding the tackle in the game today. This was supported by a practical session with the support of some of the attending YMOs. In addition to this, James Phillips and Andy Smith provided additional information from a referee’s perspective, which many found useful. This coupled with John’s coaching perspective allowed for a comprehensive discussion surrounding the tackle. John also provided information on video analysis and in-game analysis and how coaches, players and referees can utilise these techniques to improve their performance in the long-run.

After the break for lunch, Ian Costello Head Coach at Nottingham Rugby delivered a talk on his coaching philosophy and some of the challenges that can occur. This was coupled with an outdoor session which allowed these coaching methods and philosophy to be put into practice for all to see.

The conference was thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended and provided an in-depth review of key areas of the game. Attendees were also issued with a limited edition NLD Game Development Conference 2017 sports bag as a memento for the day. Thank you to all participated, spoke and to those who put in the hard work and effort to make the day a success.

NLD Game Development Conference – Applications Open!

May 8th, 2017 by

The popular NLD Game Development Conference will take place once again this year at Samworth Academy in Mansfield on Saturday 10th June 2017.

We are delighted that Nottingham Rugby Head Coach Ian Costello will be a Guest Speaker.  Many local coaches will have already come across Ian through the successful series of Coaching Clinics run at Lady Bay and will be keen to hear more from him and see how his Coaching Philosophy is put into practice.

The conference will also include sessions on using Video Analysis without spending huge amounts of money on expensive packages and equipment as well as the NLD Young Match Programme.  There will also be a CPD delivered on ‘Managing the Tackle’ which will be delivered by the England Rugby team.

The Conference will start at 9am and will finish by 4pm.  Lunch is included and once again the Conference is very kindly supported by NLD RFU as well as the Sir Anthony Wharton Trust.  We are therefore happy to confirm that the price for the day will remain £10 per person to include lunch!

Places are limited to make sure you book your place today!

Click here to book.

Sam Yates Receives England Rugby Recognition!

March 27th, 2017 by

NLD Young Match Official Sam Yates has recently been awarded with his ‘100 Hour’ Award from the vInspired Young Rugby Ambassador’s Porgramme for Volunteering in the game.  This is a huge achievement and something that is recognised Nationally with the presentation of a Jacket marking the occasion.

NLD President Jeff Mapp commented; ‘Sam has been a huge credit not only to himself but to Scunthorpe RFC and his refereeing career has really taken off this season.  It is fantastic to see him offer so much support to the club and we are very much looking forward to seeing where it takes him next.’

Sam has written about his YMO journey and you can read more below.

Sam Yates – My Young Officials Journey 

My young officials journey started in October, I had played for Scunthorpe, from under sevens up to under 13’s, however, injuries caused me to give up as I was performing well at other sports. I had officiated before as my father was a referee and I ran touch from the age of 8 so I had officiating in my blood, as I ran touch more my dad would give me more opportunities, it started with just signalling touch and by the end I would have the ability and he would have the confidence to let me make decisions that would not affect the game in a substantial way. When I got the chance to go on the young officials course I leaped at the chance because I love rugby and I wanted to keep in the game, not just as a supporter.

Once I had completed the course I officiated my first game on the October 30th. The game was played between, Scunthorpe and Driffield U13’s with the game being a high scoring affair with the final score being 21 – 19.  After this I continued to referee for Scunthorpe and I officiated three or four more games and I also refereed at the local interschool tournament. Once I had gained some experience I joined the Notts, Lincs and Derbys Referee Society. I have refereed most Sundays since I joined: the highlights so far have been refereeing a U16 Shield Semi Final between Kesteven and West Bridgford and the Trent College 10’s tournament.

I gained my 100 hours volunteering in January 2017, this hasn’t only been from my refereeing but I am the Scunthorpe first team camera man, I video all the home matches and most of the away games. My footage is linked to our match analysis computer and he analyses the game with live coding throughout the game.  On a match days, I am also responsible for updating the match stats for the online RFU Game Management System (GMS) and sending out the match video to the RFU for the Elite hub and various other recipients. I have also continued to help with the production of the programme stats that feature in the Scunthorpe programme every home match, these are also used by the coach for picking the team.

The annual bonfire at the rugby club was held this year on a Friday night, I volunteered to help on the night but I also went down during the day to help set up the food stalls and the fencing around the fire to keep the patrons safe. On the night, I was asked to be a steward, firstly I was charged with looking after the front entrance, not allowing any cars to park there and if they pulled up to advise them where to park. Secondly, I was asked to patrol the field and make sure that everyone was safe and try to resolve any problems.

My aim is to continue to improve my refereeing and next year I am going to officiate when Scunthorpe are away from home, this will enable me to referee men’s games and hopefully progress up the refereeing ladder, I will still be volunteering for Scunthorpe Rugby Club.

Ian Costello to Deliver at NLD Game Development Conference

March 21st, 2017 by

The popular NLD Game Development Conference will take place once again this year and we are delighted to announce that Nottingham Rugby Head Coach Ian Costello will be a Guest Speaker!  Many local coaches will have already come across Ian through the successful series of Coaching Clinics run at Lady Bay and will be keen to hear more from him and see how his Coaching Philosophy is put into practice.

The conference will be on Saturday 10th June 2017 and will take place at Samworth Church Academy in Mansfield.

The conference will also include sessions on using Video Analysis without spending huge amounts of money on expensive packages and equipment as well as the NLD Young Match Programme.  There will also be a CPD delivered on ‘Managing the Tackle’ which will be delivered by the England Rugby team.

The Conference will be going live soon on the RFU Online Course Booking Site and more information will be announced shortly.

In the meantime put the date in your diary – we are looking forward to another excellent conference.