New rugby league club set to take flight Community October 14, 2019 A brand new club will grace the North East’s community game from this Thursday, with the launch of Newcastle Magpies based in the city’s west end. Supported by Newcastle Thunder and the Rugby League World Cup, the club will hold its launch evening at 6-7pm on Thursday 17th October for children aged 7-12 years old At Walbottle Campus. Created as the first milestone in the Rugby League World Cup legacy programme that formed part of Newcastle’s bid to be a host city in the 2021 tournament, Newcastle Magpies RLFC will be the first community club in almost thirty years to bear the city’s name. Set to wear the famed black and white stripes, the Magpies will add to the growing participation numbers in the region that has already seen player numbers grow 30% in the last five years. With healthy numbers already and a great deal of excitement building around the Magpies, it’s launch will be one of the first activities to take place on the brand new 3G pitch at Walbottle, recently opened by the mayor of Newcastle, and becoming one of the first 3G pitches in the North East to having rugby league markings. “It’s incredibly exciting for the city and also the community game” said Chairman, Jordan Robinson. “We’ve seen a lot of success with rugby league expansion in the North East at a professional level and now is the time to use that to really accelerate grassroots growth.” “We’ve been spending a lot of time with the Outer West Learning Trust, working with local schools to introduce rugby league” said community coach, Steve Beaty. “They’ve really taken to it, with lots of kids getting involved with big smiles on their faces. “Having seen the positive impact we have had from the growth of Cramlington and also Alnwick Bears, who launched in 2018 to the north of the city, it really is a prime time for young people to get involved.” As well as a new club, the city is aiming to increase participation and awareness of the sport ahead of the tournament’s arrival in the Autumn of 2021, with a total of four games taking place across the city. With Thunder’s Kingston Park Stadium hosting three games in the men’s competition and the opening World Cup match featuring England at St James’ Park, the new club’s tag line of #HowaytheMags a fitting rallying call. Anyone wishing to know more or sign up for the launch event should email [email protected] or contact the club via social media.