“JOIN our team” – that is the message from Basingstoke Rugby Football Club for local businesses.

’Stoke, which is one of the largest community rugby clubs in the country, has big aspirations and wants businesses to play their part.

At a business event held in the clubhouse at Down Grange, director of rugby James Croker said: “Our mission is to turn Basingstoke into a rugby union sports culture town – big, broad and quite brash. And this is achievable.

“In the rugby community, Basingstoke has a fabulous reputation – we have a good name out there so we have to make sure we harness that.

“And how do we do that? We do that with the support of our partners, affiliates, sponsors and potential sponsors.”

James spoke of the club’s plans for the clubhouse, and talked about its community programme that promotes grassroots rugby, which includes its ongoing partnership in schools throughout Basingstoke and Deane.

He said that businesses getting involved sustains the club with its rapid growth in community involvement. Sponsors at the event included the Champion Group and Skilz along with AXA Wealth which is the club's community partner.

James also spoke of the club’s valued partnership with London Irish, describing it as “very strong.”

He said the Reading-based club recognised that the likes of Declan Danaher, Paul Hodgson and Peter Richards came through local clubs.

“We have 16 people who have represented London Irish,” said James. “And we want the next Declan Danaher to come from Basingstoke Rugby Club.”

London Irish players make regular appearances at the club, including first-team player Jonny Harris, who was on hand to chat to guests.

James said the club offers a range of packages which can be tailored to suit company budgets and objectives, where they can choose to be involved in things like disability rugby, touch rugby, along with youth rugby.

To attract more business sponsorship, the club has introduced a new set of packages. These include the Silver Package, that costs £500, and the Gold Package, that costs £1,000.

To find out more about new sponsorship opportunities, contact James either by emailing dor.brfc@btinternet.com or by calling 07727 095810.