Record high for Old Elthamians festival of mini rugby

Ten rugby clubs from across South London and Kent brought more than 1,200 children, aged six to 11, to Eltham College to take part in their first matches of the season.

The Old Elthamians’ 48th Foxbury Festival was bigger than ever with 130 teams played 260 matches, all within the space of just three hours on Sunday morning.

Festival co-ordinator Nick Linford said: “It has been such a fun event for everyone. All the boys and girls were running around with rugby balls and big smiles on their faces, displaying the RFU core values of teamwork, respect enjoyment, discipline, and sportsmanship.

“There is something very special about the Foxbury Festival. And it could not have happened without all the help from the team coaches, managers and parent volunteers and the team from Be Park Fit, so I really want to thank them. Everyone worked hard to give the children a day they won’t forget.”

Under the watchful eye of club referees, the U7s and U8s played tag rugby and the U9s were introduced to tackling in matches for the first time. And on the pitches by the junior school, more than 500 U10s and U11s competed in their first club matches of the season.

Linford said: “At the Old Elthamians we like to make our festival extra special. The pizza, ice cream, coffee and burger van were kept very busy, alongside cakes, candy cables and a free sausage in a bun and bottle refills of squash thanks to our sponsor, Kallars, the estate agents. And inevitably, the longest queue was for the candy floss.

“It is a running joke that the sun always comes out for the Foxbury Festival, and despite some heavy rain forecasts we were again treated to blue skies and sunshine. Well done to the children who all left with a well-deserved Old Elthamians medal or trophy.

The clubs in attendance at the RFU accredited event were: Old Elthamians, Beckenham, Bromley, Dartfordians, Old Alleynians, Old Beccehamians, Old Colfeians, Sevenoaks, Sidcup and Blackheath.

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