Old Techs official will be a guest at England's game with Australia

13 Nov 2021 09:53 | Devon RFU

OLD Technicians RFC’s Shaun Bedford-Smith will be a guest of the RFU President Jeff Blackett at Twickenham today for England’s game against Australia.

Bedford-Smith has been nominated for an RFU President’s Value the Volunteer Outstanding Contribution Award for his work in Plymouth rugby over the years.

He has been the heartbeat of Old Techs for many years and takes on a number of roles at the Devon One club, including coaching the side and fixtures and match secretary. He will also still pull on his boots if needed to make sure his club fulfil a fixture. Along with club chairman David Evans and other committee members, Bedford-Smith spent a lot of the lockdown working to improve the club’s facilities at Weston Mill.

He is also heavily involved in the Plymouth Combination and runs their representative team.

Bedford-Smith was unaware that someone had nominated him for the award and so was taken aback when he received a letter from the RFU inviting him to Twickenham.

“It was a surprise and a shock when it came through,” he said. “You don’t do it to get an award or anything, but obviously it is nice to get recognised.”

As well as receiving tickets to watch England v Australia, Bedford-Smith will be treated to a lunch at the Spirit of Rugby Restaurant and passes to the Members’ Lounge.

The only downside for Bedford-Smith was that his team’s Devon One derby game with Tamar Saracens was rearranged for the same day.

“It was supposed to be a free weekend but we have this rearranged game,” he said. “I don’t like missing any game, especially a derby, but I will be keeping up-to-date with it.”

The RFU are keen to recognise volunteers from all levels of rugby and in various ways.

They said: “The Honda Volunteer Recognition Programme will continue to provide a platform to recognise volunteers who have made a great contribution to their club and community – no matter what their role – on or off the pitch, behind the scenes or on the committee.

“With the support of Honda the volunteer recognition programme will provide exciting opportunities, such as the chance to watch the England men’s team and Red Roses train, a coaching day with Eddie Jones and the Honda Volunteer of the Year Award.”