Ruthven takes up capital post

Orkney’s regional development officer is moving south to the capital to take up a new combined role at Stewart’s Melville College and the associated rugby club Stewart’s Melville FP.

A Stewart's Melville College player on the attack in the Brewin Dolphin Shield final

Ruthven, has been at Orkney for five years and has seen the club, and rugby, in the area go from strength to strength.

He said:

“Orkney is progressing as a rugby stronghold, the numbers have increased drastically over the past few years, the club has a strong mini and midi section and more people are flocking to the senior sides, with the 1XV vying for promotion this year.

“The club collaborates with local schools to host one of the largest tag tournaments in Scotland, with up to 1400 kids getting involved and competing in the event. This is one of many events run on the island.

“I wish the club all the best for the future, and hope they continue to progress in future.”

Taking up the role at Orkney, on an interim basis, will be Mark Sinclair, who was a Scottish Rugby modern apprentice for the club in 2013-14.

Ruthven’s will now step in as rugby co-ordinator at Stewart’s Melville, working with both the club and the school. The two separate entities came together to establish this new position, as they believe they share similar ambitions for their teams and players, moving forward.

Ruthven continued:

“Stewart’s Melville is prestigious as both a club and a school, with the establishments having a lot of history in the game, and I’m excited to work with such a prominent name in Scottish Rugby.

“The new role will mainly focus on coach education, special skills and strength and conditioning, which are areas the club and school feel can be developed in order to drive success in the future.

“I’m more than up for the challenge and I’m looking forward to getting started and stuck-in to the rugby.”

A game with no barriers

 A recent example of Ruthven’s work in Orkney, was holding a mini rugby tag tournament for disabled children as a celebration of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

The rugby club - in partnership with the Orkney Disability Forum and St Colms, a respite clinic based on the island – held three sessions over the course of a month, focussing on developing participants basic skills whilst having fun, promoting an active lifestyle and encouraging well-being.  

Ruthven said: “I have really enjoyed all the sessions with the guys, they have worked extremely hard and shown a real appetite for the activities undertaken.

“The tag game provides a great avenue for people from all walks of life to get involved and have fun, whilst keeping fit and healthy.”