Report from the RFA Dinner April 2022


Queen’s Club, London
Saturday 23rd April 2022

48 players and friends came together on Saturday 23rd April at Queen’s Club for the first RFA Dinner since 2018. As is the tradition the event was held the same weekend as the Wood Cup, the Club Knock-out competition which has run since 1974. There is a separate report on the Wood Cup 2022 on the RFA website.

Of the 48 attending, 26 were players in the Wood Cup and 8 were RFA Board Members. The Association welcomed 3 guests who have made important contributions to the Association as donors or facilators, as well as being pleased to see a number of our senior members, and our current National Doubles champions.

Just the one speech was made, by the outgoing President, David Parlby. In his speech David outlined the idea that has driven his period in office: namely the belief, common to all those present, that Fives is a brilliant game which we would all like to see thrive.

“In many ways fives is in a good place, with a big increase in the number of women playing, well attended competitions, a strong club scene and an innovative and committed Board. There are areas of concern: existing courts need, and will continue to need, expensive refurbishment, too many players stop playing after leaving school, and not enough new players take up the game. We have a strategy to deal with these issues and we are making progress.  However, to achieve our aims the RFA needs more members and more money.”

David confessed that the Association has not been great at telling members and non-members about what it does.  Hence the attempt to address this weakness by producing a short video to be hosted on the RFA website and displayed at RFA events, giving an overview of the RFA’s activities.  Dinner guests were treated to the premiere showing of the video: it shows the restart of fives at Stoke Newington School, where the RFA has spent £10,000 in getting the six courts back into play, funding a coaching programme and provision of gloves and balls; it shows fives being played at Mount Kelly after the RFA’s intervention to get a court back in play; it shows squash fives in action, and fives being played at Loretto, where the roof, walls and floors of the 3 courts have been refurbished to a high standard.

David’s message to all those present: tell everyone you know about fives and encourage them to try the game out.  The more you help the RFA,the more we can help you to continue playing fives for a long time to come.

He concluded by announcing the results of the Silent Auction, which realised £2,450 for the RFA.

The Queen’s Club Dining Room

Speaks for itself

How many titles among this bunch?

7 of the 8 Old Rugbeians

Ollie, Louise, Helena & Ashwin among our younger members