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Rugby Vets in Fundraiser

The IRFU Charitable Trust are raising awareness about two upcoming fundraising initiatives:


Ballymena RFC France Cycle

Grand Slam Walk from Malahide RFC to Greystones RFC


Five Ballymena Rugby Club veterans with a total age of 318yrs are off to France this September to cycle that distance in aid of The IRFU Charitable Trust.

Their journey in early September starts in the St Emilion wine region in Bordeaux and ends one week later in the historic city of Carcassonne – approximately 318 kilometres south.

The cycle route is known as Le Canal des Deux Mers a Velo which incorporates le Canal de Garonne and le Canal du Midi.

Former Ballymena Chairman Trevor Gillen said;

"As a cycling group we decided to undertake our annual French tour in aid of a charity, and unanimously agreed on the IRFU Charitable Trust. As former rugby players from the 70s, 80s and 90s we enjoyed the craic and comradeship we experienced through rugby in the amateur era. We want to give something back and could think of no better way of doing this than through supporting the Charitable Trust which was founded to;

"support seriously injured players in their everyday lives and helps restore their confidence and independence."

Incoming President of the IRFU, current Trustee of its Charitable Trust and long-time member of Ballymena RFC Ian McIlrath, commented;

"I am delighted to welcome this fund-raising initiative by this band of current and former Ballymena RFC old codgers.

I am confident that despite their advancing years they will manage to stay on their bikes, and with grit, determination, and expert appreciation of St Emilion, finish the ride. I wish them well"

The party, which is currently in training along the North Coast and around Ballymena, is led by Ronnie McBride and includes Trevor Gillen, Jim Mc Kendry, Bruce Holdstock and John Wallace.

You can follow the groups progress, just search in Facebook for "Rugby Veterans France Fundraiser"

You can make a contribution through the Just Giving website.


Malahide RFC to Greystones RFCAlso, Kevin Flanigan, incoming President of Malahide RFC and his members have initiated and organised a Grand Slam Walk from Malahide RFC to Greystones RFC on Sunday 26th August, starting at 6 am, following the coast and finishing with food and refreshments for 500 people at Greystones RFC.   All money raised will go directly to the IRFU Charitable Trust for our 34 seriously injured rugby players.  Any sponsorship or support is very welcome leading up to and on the day.  It is hoped to make this an annual event but we cannot do it without the support of all the Rugby Clubs in Ireland and in particular in the area.


Click here to see the first promotional video which shows the route – you can do all the route or any part of the route.

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