The ‘Tuesday Team’ have worked since May 2016 on the project which is seeing the Nottinghamshire club completely rebuild their existing clubhouse facilities at the Kelham Road ground.
At the opening of Phase Two, just before Christmas, the club awarded the volunteer group special certificates to mark their contribution to the project which has saved the club many thousands of pounds.
While contactors have done the main construction and technical tasks, the volunteers have concentrated on enabling works beginning by clearing existing structures for demolition.
So far the club has completed a new changing block, built to Rugby Football Union and Sport England specifications, plus an office, toilets, community meeting room and new entrance hall which will feature a club shop once the whole project is complete. The completion is expected to be next autumn (2018) when a new clubhouse bar and dining room facility is due to be opened.
The first phase, which was a new changing block, was opened in September by the club’s former international Dusty Hare.
The volunteers have been led by David Pick, a former quantity surveyor, who has led the project having retired from full time work last year. The group have included his 89 year-old father, Cyril.
David commented: “The team has varied in numbers but the ages range from late 50s to late 80s. They have saved the club in excess of £25,000 through their efforts in lifting and shifting, painting (and lots of it), cleaning and clearing, making benches and supporting the contractors in numerous jobs while drinking tea and having lots of fun. It’s been a giggle most weeks.”
The most concentrated period of work came last May when the old dressing room block had to be demolished. The ‘Tuesday Team’ were then joined by other club members to make sure the building project kept to a tight deadline of having a new facility ready for the start of the 2017-18 season last September.
Newark are partly funding the new development through their own substantial fund raising campaign which so far has raised around £400,000. In addition, the club has been further helped by a £295,000 grant from Sport England, a £100,000 loan from the RFU Foundation plus grants from WREN, the landfill tax organisation and Tarmac, the construction company.