Trio join Scottish Rugby official charity partner Hearts & Balls

Trio join Scottish Rugby official charity partner Hearts & Balls

Hearts & Balls, a Scottish charity which supports rugby players who suffer life-changing injuries, have welcomed Hugh Dan MacLennan, Struan Kerr-Liddell and Sandra Taylor to continue the work of former ambassador Jim Taylor MBE.

Struan Kerr-Liddell will take on the mantle as the charity’s ambassador as it enters its 25th year, leading on providing support and guidance to players who suffer life-changing injuries.

Initially, the charity was created as a result of the rugby community’s efforts to rally behind Struan, who broke his neck playing for Lismore Rugby Club in 1999. In the years since, Jim, who sadly passed away in December 2022, proved to be an invaluable support and mentor, while the charity has significantly widened its support.

Also joining the charity’s board will be Jim’s wife of almost 30 years, Sandra Taylor, who has been heavily involved in Hearts & Balls since the beginning, working alongside Jim to support those who needed it.

At the same time Kenny Hamilton, who served the charity for more than a decade, will step down from his role as chair after more than nine years. During his time with the organisation, Hearts & Balls provided support to more than 30 players and their families with everything from carers to wheelchairs to vehicles. BBC Alba’s former rugby commentator Hugh Dan MacLennan – who gave the eulogy at Jim’s funeral – will replace Kenny.

Hugh Dan said: “You can’t replace a Jim Taylor. What we must do is preserve his diligence, his aspirations, his passion and his warmth.

“I’m stepping into big shoes replacing Kenny Hamilton as chair – he has done a phenomenal job and achieved so much.

“The charity is in a fantastic place with a strong board, heightened awareness thanks to our women’s and men’s Hearts & Balls MB sevens teams and renewed vigour as we all look to do Jim proud.”

Sandra added: “Jim always liked to help injured players any way he could, particularly when it came to sharing knowledge from his own experience. 

“We are indebted to the help we received over the years from Hearts & Balls. Having been involved in one way or another since the beginning, I’m looking forward to formalising my role and helping Hearts & Balls continue to be there as a vital support for those who need it.”


The charity has so far contributed more than £700,000 – as well as providing valuable advocacy, support and advice – to injured players. It also continues to support clubs to make accessibility improvements,  from disabled toilets to access ramps and lifts. 

Its board is currently planning its 25th anniversary celebration fundraiser and on 17 April, it will host its first annual Jim Taylor MBE Golf Day at Glasgow Golf club.

To find out more, click HERE.


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