RNRU Chairman supersession

Captain Andy Kellett MBE Royal Navy and incoming Chair Captain Roger Readwin ADC Royal Navy
New RNRU Chairman Capt Roger Readwin ADC RN and Captain Andy Kellett MBE RN pictured at Britannia Royal Naval College

Traditionally, the handover of the Chair of the Royal Navy Rugby Union (RNRU) would take place after watching the end of season match at Twickenham between the Army and the Navy. Unfortunately that was not possible for the outgoing Chair, Captain Andy Kellett MBE Royal Navy and the incoming Chair Captain Roger Readwin ADC Royal Navy. However, they did have the opportunity to meet up where they first met each other, Britannia Royal Naval College (BRNC) Dartmouth, where the new Chair is The Captain of BRNC. 

Captain Kellett has stepped down ahead of his retirement from the Royal Navy after a career spanning 38 years.  Although his time as Chair has coincided with the many challenges Covid19 has inflicted on our lives and the rugby community, he will leave with a locker full of fond memories; reflecting Captain Kellett said;

 ‘I have had a fantastic career in the Royal Navy and throughout that time rugby has been a central pillar. I have been lucky enough to play or be involved in rugby all over the world, representing the ships I have served in as well as the Royal Navy .  It didn’t matter whether it was in the desert of Djibouti, or the middle of a Favela in Rio de Janeiro or at Twickenham, the people I have met in the game the world over have the same common values  and a camaraderie that make rugby the best game in the world.’

 On handing over to Captain Readwin, he commented;

 ‘I have known Roger for nearly 30 years and he has rugby in his veins.  I will be leaving the RNRU in good hands and as rugby re-generates post Covid19, he will do what he has done all his career and lead from the front. Rugby in the Royal Navy is in good hands’.

The new chair has a long history in Navy Rugby and during a career full of operational deployments and overseas appointments, he has had a successful playing career as well as three years as Director of Navy Rugby.  On taking over the role, Captain Readwin said;

 ‘ I would like to firstly extend my sincere gratitude to Captain Andy Kellett, for his steadfast leadership of the RNRU throughout the very tricky period of COVID. Andy’s passion for Navy Rugby,  and the care he demonstrated looking after both the union and our people, in these challenging times, is all testament to Andy’s selfless commitment and passion for Navy rugby.  Andy has left an indelible legacy for Navy rugby, both on and off the field, ensuring Navy rugby is in the best position to move forward, as we hopefully emerge from this unprecedented pandemic. 

 On a personal note, it is an absolute honour and privilege to be selected as the next RNRU Chair. Navy rugby, both as a player and more recently as the Director of Navy Rugby, has been a huge part of my career, both playing in ship’s team deployed and on the hallowed turf at Twickenham, and without doubt, has shaped the leader I am today. To that end, I am determined to ensure Navy rugby, from the grass roots to the representative level, continues to provide opportunities for all and contributes to the fighting effectiveness of the Royal Navy, whilst at the same time, creating memories and friendships for life ‘on and off’ the field.  '

 The RNRU have both grass roots and representative 7s matches planned for the summer period as well a full season in 21/22.  The representative season will kick off with the U23 Inter Service (IS) Championship in the Autumn, where the RN will be looking to retain the IS Championship that was last contested in 2019. The details of all fixtures for next season will be published on the RNRU website https://www.navyrugbyunion.co.uk/


Photocredit: Royal Navy Rugby Union