Members of the Gloucester Rugby team have swapped their studs for saws, wrenches and trowels in order to complete an eight-week construction taster course at Gloucestershire College.
Organised by The Rugby Players’ Association (RPA), the course was created with the players’ personal and professional development in mind, to help them gain DIY skills for the home and perhaps give them inspiration for what they may go on to do when they retire from professional rugby.
Since January, a mix of academy and first squad players have spent one evening a week at the College’s Gloucester Campus, and have already successfully completed short courses in plumbing and plastering. Over the next few weeks they will be learning carpentry and bricklaying in the College’s purpose-built workshops, under the expert guidance of its industry-experienced lecturers.
The players participating include Henry Trinder, Tom Savage, Joe Latta, Dan Murphy, Ben Morgan, Lewis Ludlow, Joe Batley, Luke Cole, James Gibbons, Rob Cook, Tom Hicks, Daren Dawidiuk and Nicky Thomas.
Academy player Lewis Ludlow said: “I wanted to do the DIY course because I’m moving into my first house and wanted to be able to do as much as possible myself. I’m also looking into property development, as I enjoy that, and the more I can do myself, the more profitable that would be for me. The lecturers and facilities have been great – I especially enjoyed plastering with big Dan!”
Tom Savage, first squad player and former captain, added: “I wanted to gain some experience in DIY so I can do bits and pieces around the house. It’s been really good and I’m now going to look at plastering my own walls.”
Josh Frape, RPA Personal Development Manager for Gloucester Rugby, said: “This is a great opportunity for the players to learn some new skills that may help them around the house or even spark an interest in a career away from rugby. Thank you to the College and the lecturers for organising and giving up their time to deliver.”
Mike Lawson, Head of School for Construction and Building Services, said: “We’ve really enjoyed welcoming the Gloucester Rugby players to Gloucester Campus and giving them a taste of the many trades we offer as apprenticeships, full and part-time courses. It’s been a good opportunity for us to showcase the training facilities we have at Gloucestershire College, which are some of the best in the South West, as well as teach the boys some invaluable DIY skills they can use at home. They’re doing a fantastic job so far and we hope that some return in the future to further develop those skills.”
If you are interested in supporting the players through the RPA Personal Development Programme please contact Richard Bryan on 020 3053 6670 or rbryan@theRPA.co.uk
For more information on Gloucestershire College please click here.