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RUGBY UNION: Alchester get home comforts
ALCHESTER will begin next season at their own ground after moving to Fritwell.
The club, who were only founded in 2008, have played at Oxford Harlequins’ Marston Ferry Road ground for their first three seasons of league rugby.
But they are now relishing taking the field at their new home in the village near Bicester.
“We have been very lucky that we have been able to find a ground,” said chairman Chris Kimber.
“We really appreciate the work Oxford Harlequins have done for us.
“Without them, we would really have struggled.”
Alchester’s first match at Fritwell Playing Field will be against Buckingham in Southern Counties North on September 29.
Alchester have signed an initial ten-year agreement with Fritwell Playing Field Committee to rent the old football pitch.
The pitch has been reseeded and given a dose of fertilizer, while new posts have been erected.
Kimber said: “We are just refurbishing the changing rooms and we will use the village hall for entertaining.
“Everyone has worked really hard for it.
“It is the players’ club and they are all involved with the fundraising.
“We would like to get a clubhouse going with the village and make it a community facility.
“We have got about 12 people from the village who play for the club, so there is a natural link.”
Kimber said Alchester needed to find their own ground to progress, with a youth set-up their next target.
“We had to go that way,” he said. “The aim is to put out a junior team as well and we couldn’t do that at Marston Ferry Road.
“This is a new beginning and a new challenge, although we are only four years old.
“I think we have done really well to get established and run two teams.”
Meanwhile, Tom Iles will captain Alchester’s first team next season after taking over from Dan Kimber, who will be club coach while recovering from a neck injury.
Adam Thompson is club captain, while Craig Boyce skippers the second team, with Steve Coogan as manager.