This morning we received the disappointing news that we have been unsuccessful in our application to remain in the Tyrrells Premier 15s for the next three-year period.

We have always blazed the trail for Women’s Rugby Union in the North West and are proud to have been a founder member of the league. It is great to see the increasing reach and popularity of Women’s Rugby Union in England led by the Premier 15s and a strong Red Roses side. Unfortunately in sport, for some teams to win, others have to lose and we were unable to find enough wins on and off the pitch over the first three years to retain our place.

I would like to take this time to celebrate the achievement of a team that has competed without a significant external financial backer, or as an extension of a High-Level Men’s side. We will continue to do things the Firwood Waterloo way – next season will be our 31st and we will compete in Championship North 1.

My thanks go to the staff and volunteers behind the scenes who have worked tirelessly to make step changes to the way we operate. We do not underestimate the challenges ahead and, as always, appreciate the backing of the whole club as we step up to meet them.

We can’t wait to see our amazing supporters back at the Memorial Ground when next season, a pint will be shared in the bar as soon as it reopens!

My thanks go to all the players who have been part of this historic period. I understand that some of you will feel the need to leave the club to pursue your playing ambitions and fully support you in doing so. Please know that we are proud of you and you will always be part of the Waterloo story and welcome back at any time.

In this time of International upheaval, Rugby rightly takes a back seat and our thoughts turn to those of our staff, volunteers, supporters, club members and players who are key workers or directly affected by the Pandemic. Final thanks for this statement go to them. We hope to see everyone back in the Autumn to celebrate the Memorial Ground’s centenary.

Christine Braithwaite

Chair of Women’s Rugby

Firwood Waterloo Women