London Society of Rugby Football Union Referees

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Head Injury - recognise & remove

A reminder from the Game Development Dept. (Match Officials) at RFU regarding head injuries/concussion - at the half-way point in the season, please could we politely remind all Match Officials that there is no HIA process for any competition below the Greene King Championship. We unfortunately had a HIA in the Women’s Premiership this weekend.

A point to remember; If a Player is taken from the field with a Head injury or suspected Head Injury, they cannot return to the field of play.  We operate under the ‘Recognise’ & ‘Remove’ protocols. With all the focus on Player Welfare and concussion, it is extremely important we are aware of this.

A number of clubs have tried this in recent weeks in the National Leagues, well done to both Referees on insisting the player cannot return.  The NCA have issued a reminder to clubs in the National Leagues.
World Rugby - zero tolerance to reckless and accidental head contact, effective 3rd January 2017

World Rugby has further strengthened its commitment to injury prevention by announcing details of a zero-tolerance approach to reckless and accidental head contact in the sport.

While injuries in the game are not on the rise, the federation continues to be proactive in furthering evidence-based strategies to reduce injury risk for all players.

In a change to law, World Rugby has redefined illegal (high) tackle categories and increased sanctions to deter high tackles via a law application guideline. This will apply at all levels of the game from 3 January 2017 introducing minimum on-field sanctions for reckless and accidental contact with the head, effectively lowering the acceptable height of the tackle. The guideline will be supported with a global education programme.

For more information please see World Rugby -

RFU Match Offical Development Send out - #3 of 2016-17

Happy New Year.

The lastest RFU Match Official Development send out (#3 of 2016-17)  can be found here.

West Region Meeting - Thursday Feb 2nd - Open Invitation to RBS 6N Match Officals Presentation/Q&A Session

The You are invited to the next West List regional meeting on Thursday 2nd February 2017 at London Welsh RFC, 1900 for a 1930 start. (London Welsh RFC, Old Deer Park, 187 Kew Rd, Richmond TW9 2AZ).  We have managed to secure the attendance of the on field officials team for the England v France, RBS 6 Nations match on Saturday 4th February. So we will be holding a presentation/Q&A session with Angus Gardner, Glen Jackson and Marius van der Westhuizen along with Wayne Barnes.

It will be great to see not only a large turn out of West list members but also colleagues from the other regions.
World Rugby - Contact with Head

A reminder (hopefully this hasn’t passed you by!) that World Rugby has further strengthened its commitment to injury prevention by announcing details of a zero-tolerance approach to reckless and accidental head contact in the sport. Please see World Rugby here for further information and video examples. This has been in place since January 3rd.

On BT Sports Rugby Tonight programme on Wednesday, Wayne Barnes was a guest, discussing the above and offered some excellent advice and thoughts on this subject, which can be viewed via the below links:

Well worth a watch!
Shawnton De Four, Old Emanuel RFC

Last weekend (Saturday 4th March), just like every other weekend in the season, whilst tens of thousands of players up and down the country went out and played a game of rugby, battled hard with opponents for 80 minutes, and then returned with them to the Clubhouse afterwards to share in the camaraderie of this great game, for one player this was sadly not the case. Shawnton de Four of Old Emanuel RFC, collapsed whilst playing for the 2nds on Saturday 4th March, in a match officiated by one of own (SW Region Referee). Despite the efforts of so many people at the Ground and the emergency services, Shawnton didn’t make it to the bar. He was an important part of the Old Emanuel family and had played for the 1st and 2nd XV. He leaves a wife, and 14 month old twins.

A JustGiving page has been set up - - Old Emanuel RFC wishes to raise funds for the twin's future education and help their member of the rugby, sporting family. OERFC would appreciate any donations and publicity.

Our condolences and thoughts go out to Shawnton's family and friends, and to all our friends at OERFC at this difficult time.
Fantastic Ticket Offer - Saracens RFC v Harlequins, Saturday 8th April

Saracens Rugby Football Club are pleased to offer London Society Referees, their families & friends, a fantastic discount on tickets to the crucial Aviva Premiership game being played against London rivals Harlequins, at Wembley on Saturday 8th April. Full details of the over 30% discount on Silver tickets for the above event can be found here
Calum Tomas - International Appointment

LSRFUR is delighted to announce that Calum Tomas [Howard] has been appointed to the Ireland v Japan U19 International on 25th March at Donnybrook (Leinster). The match will commemorate the 60th anniversary of the relationship between the two countries' unions. This is a fantastic achievement and is the first new appointment to a capped international for the Society in several years, following a strong 2016-17 season for Calum in National League One. Congratulations!
Message from LSRFUR President, Edward Evans

On 1st June a new Management Committee took office to run the Society for the forthcoming season. At the April General Meeting of the Society, Simon Ambler was elected as Deputy President, Nick Ansell as Chairman of Appointments and Grading, Simon Dodd as Training and Development Manager, Andy MacNeaney as Regional Manager of the North Region, John Durkin as Regional Manager of the South West Region, John Payton as Midweek Manager, Simon Hardcastle as Premier List Manager and Suzanne Whealing as Communications Manager. Alexis Manley has become our SEG Representative and Dave Broadwell, the Development Squad Manager. Others continue in their previous roles. Gary Dibden and Simon McConnell have left the Management Committee after a number of years of service and the thanks of the whole Society are due to them for their efforts.

Very recently our General Secretary, Tim Miller, has been appointed to the RFU Council as representative of all England's referees. This is very good news for refereeing and our congratulations should go to Tim. Tim has decided to stand down as General Secretary of the Society so as to devote the time and effort needed for his new role with the RFU. He has been involved with the running of the Society for many years in various roles, not least as President from 2007 to 2011, but also as Treasurer and SW and SE List Secretary (the forerunner to the Regional Manager role). Obviously we are sorry to lose someone of Tim's experience but he will remain involved with the Society and I am sure we will see him at committee meetings from time to time.

Fortunately, and thanks to good succession planning, we have in Peter Coulthard a readymade replacement as General Secretary. Peter has been Assistant Secretary for several years and is delighted to step into the role. While until very recently Peter has refereed at Level 5, he is now spending more time assessing or refereeing at a less demanding level.

I am sure I speak for all members in wishing Tim well in his new role with the RFU and wishing Peter well in what is a key role with the Society.

Summer well. Make sure the date for the annual training conference is in your diaries - Sunday 3rd September in Central London - details to follow. Also the Annual Dinner will this year be on Thursday 16th November at The Mayfair Hotel. Invite and details to follow as soon as the speaker is confirmed.

LSRFUR Touch Judge/AR Flags

New AR/Touch Judge flags, very much cheaper then previously available, which include the Society Insignia, can now be purchased directly from the Kit Manager. The flags cost £12/pair and can be ordered using this Kit Order form.