BIRMINGHAM and Solihull Bees RFC are launching an innovative and vital campaign in a bid boost funds and attendance - and need your help.
The ‘I’m Backing the Bees’ campaign needs supporters, from armchair-fans to local businesses, to help keep the club alive and buzzing.
Added to this, the club want to get 2,000 people to their exciting opening game of the season against Bristol next weekend, an initiative they have called ‘Target 2000.’ The Solihull News has teamed up with the Bees to offer five families the chance to win free tickets to the game.
The appeal for public support comes after the club were buoyed last week by a ‘remarkable response’ from their members and supporters, who pledged almost £60,000 to secure the club’s future, following an emergency meeting held last week.
The News revealed two weeks ago how the Bees were in real danger of going into liquidation as they had struggled to find the funds to pay off the tax man. They needed to raise £100,000 to stay afloat.
This leaves the Solihull club still requiring £40,000 to make sure their exciting season in the Guinness Championship can get underway.
“We were hugely impressed by the goodwill and commitment we received,” said Chairman Brian Marshall
“Our membership have given us an excellent start but we’re sure there are also businesses, organisations and individuals who also want to see a top class rugby club carrying the name of Birmingham and Solihull into the new Championship division.”
The club, who broke records as they won the National League Division Two in style last year, are urging businesses big and small to get their name on the kits, advertising or ball.
With this year’s Championship being televised by Sky Sports, there is an even bigger incentive for businesses to help out their local side. Anyone who would like more information on Backing the Bees should contact Ricky Davies on 07966 621330, 0121 705 0409 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Bees are also appealing to fans to buy up remaining season tickets or just turn up on the day and increase attendances. And the games don’t get much bigger than next Saturday’s mouth-watering tie against last year’s relegated Guinness Premiership side, Bristol (kick off 3pm).
“Playing in front of our biggest ever crowd would be a fantastic way to kick-start the new season for both Bees and the club,” said club spokesperson Jo Kilby.
“In Sharmans Cross Road, we have a ground where the fans can get close to the action and experience the thrill of top-class rugby, and in what we anticipate will be a classic David-versus-Goliath occasion we’re calling for a huge show of support.”
Head Coach Russell Earnshaw added: “We’ll be up against it, that’s for sure. Bristol are a very good side with quality throughout, so make no bones, this will be our toughest challenge to date, but I know the boys will relish the battle as well as the underdog title that goes with it.”
* To be in with a chance of winning one of five sets of family tickets (up to two adults and up to three children) for the game against Bristol, tell us the name of the league that the Bees are playing in this season. Email your answer to email@example.com (deadline Wednesday, September 9, midday).