Updated: Friday, 3rd July 2020 @ 7:20am

Heaton Moor development officer 'blown away' by National Rugby Awards prize

Heaton Moor development officer 'blown away' by National Rugby Awards prize

| By Sacha Clayton

Club development officer Paul Bailey admitted he had to pinch himself in amazement after Heaton Moor walked away with a top prize at the inaugural National Rugby Awards at Twickenham.

England are hosting Fiji at Rugby HQ on Friday September 18, but Bailey got a sneak peak at the famous venue on Wednesday night at the first ever Lawson Keys National Rugby Awards.

With the support of England captain Chris Robshaw, the awards celebrate the great and the good of the sport’s grassroots heroes, acknowledging the dedication and commitment to rugby by thousands of clubs and individuals across the country.

Bailey was there due to Heaton Moor’s nomination for the Little Scrummers Rugby Youth-Mini Section of the Year award, and after beating five other clubs to the prize the club development officer was grinning from ear to ear.

“It’s absolutely mind blowing to be a winner at the National Rugby Awards,” Bailey said.

“We found it about probably about three months ago with pitchero and put ourselves forward and we never even envisaged  that we would get through to the final six so we were just thrilled to get here and for the name to be called it was crazy.

“Probably about three years ago I personally got involved in the club and I walked through the door as a level one coach and I became a level 2 coach.

“We have suddenly gone from 130 kids to 300-odd kids in the space of two years, and it’s that growth that probably got us here tonight and it’s fantastic.”

But Bailey is adamant he and Heaton Moor are not about to slow down any time soon.

“To win Mini Section of the Year I think it’s one of the most, if not the most important awards, of the night and that’s amazing that we from Heaton Moor, a small club, that has grown from nothing to something,” Bailey added.

“To be awarded is fantastic, it’s amazing and out of this world but hopefully there is more to come.”

Lawson Keys sponsor the 2015 National Rugby Awards. Follow the Awards in The Rugby Paper www.therugbypaper.co.uk