This page gives an overview of the Strategic Plan 2020-25, adopted at the May 2020 meeting of the Board of Directors, and presented to the Club Committee in June 2020.
Bringing people together to enjoy rugby, since 1948.
To grow the game of rugby in Bicester and surrounding areas, and become the town’s strongest and most inclusive sport by providing excellent facilities and more opportunities to play.
By the end of this five-year Strategic Plan we aim to be:
Bicester’s strongest and most inclusive sport, underpinned by good governance and leadership, with the financial strength to maintain and increase investment in the game to drive community participation and player development.
One of the top 5 rugby clubs in Oxfordshire, based at a single-site with excellent facilities offering security and certainty for members; and offering a variety of playing opportunities, including social, touch, and walking rugby, and a vibrant, well-coached mini and junior section transitioning to a successful senior section—with the first team men reaching Level 6 by 2025 and our Women's team entering into a league by 2023.
Ethos & Values
The core rugby values of Teamwork, Respect, Enjoyment, Discipline, and Sportsmanship (TREDS) underpin the club’s ethos from minis to seniors—on and off the field.
We place the safe enjoyment of rugby for all first and foremost.
We are a mixed-ability, player-centred club, with a proactive KidsFirst approach in our minis section, which continues into the Juniors. Seniors provide an enjoyable, yet determined environment for local players to thrive in competitive rugby.
Strategic & Enabling Priorities
Growing the game means more people playing rugby in Bicester, leading to more revenues for the club to invest, leading to on-field success.
To deliver our Mission, we need to recruit, retain, and re-engage players at all levels. This requires a quality player experience, enabled by five strategic priorities (SPs), underpinned by two enabling priorities (EPs) of strong leadership and secure finances.
As a community amateur sports club, Bicester RUFC is entirely run by volunteers. We value and actively cultivate an engaged & well-trained army of volunteers – called Gamemakers due to their crucial role in making the rugby happen – with all positions filled to help spread the load. Our volunteers embody the Bicester values, and help the club to provide a quality player experience for us to achieve our Mission and Vision. We recognise the valuable contribution our volunteers make through our new valuing volunteers programme: Great Gamemakers.
Bicester RUFC aspires to have a schools and community rugby development programme that is recognised by Oxfordshire RFU, Sport England (and relevant others) as “best in class”. We want rugby to be the most attractive leisure offer in the town, the local community to see rugby as a vibrant local sport, and for the community to consider the club as playing a positive role in the town of Bicester.
We want excellent and well-maintained facilities to attract and retain members and volunteers. By 2031, Bicester will have a need for 3 senior pitches, plus space for juniors and training, and the RFU consider that this is equivalent to a minimum of 4 pitches. We aspire for this to be on a single site, with security of tenure (or freehold) which is financially self-sustaining for the club.
SP4. Playing Offer
Our club focus is on player development and enjoyment of the game. We aspire to be the best environment for youth rugby in Oxfordshire. This focus on player development facilitates the focus on on-field success in the Seniors, adopting the England pathway approach: Age Grade rugby at Bicester explores the boundaries of player capabilities, Colts begins to build an understanding of tactical adaptation to win, and the Seniors (Foxes and Vixens) are focused on winning. We aspire for our Senior Men (Foxes) to secure promotion to Level 6 (South West 1 East) within the next 5 years, and Vixens to enter in a league by 2023. We aim to provide an opportunity for social rugby through O2 Touch, and a social/Veterans full-contact team which helps keep players in the game for longer.
Safety and protection for players and volunteers is of paramount importance. The club is a champion of RugbySafe, ensures a safe playing and training environment for players and children, and protection for members and the club from unforeseen circumstances. All volunteers coming into contact with children are DBS cleared, with regular renewals undertaken. We are pioneering support for mental health in rugby within Oxfordshire.
EP1. Strong Leadership
The Club Board of Directors aims to provide strong and diverse leadership, with good governance, and a balanced focus on people, process and performance in running the club. We aspire for club communication to be open and transparent, with the Club Committee playing a vital role delivering the Club’s Strategic Plan, and driving membership engagement.
EP2. Secure Finances
The Club aims to complete each season with a surplus, with comprehensive sponsorship and active fundraising programmes. Our membership structure aims to offer excellent value for money, benchmarked against other clubs in the region. As a Company Limited by Guarantee, all profits and revenues are ploughed back into the club to help deliver on our mission and vision.