Richard Gilbert: “Rugby helps with my mental health, it’s a real solace, so for me lockdown was real.”

It is the nature of inclusive clubs that had Richard Gilbert ahead of many other newcomers when he first joined the Glasgow Raptors by virtue of purely being a fan of rugby. Of course, he never felt like that was the case. By his own admission, he did not know what he was doing the …

Continue reading Richard Gilbert: “Rugby helps with my mental health, it’s a real solace, so for me lockdown was real.”

Luke Harding: “I definitely feel I wouldn’t have engaged in something like a rugby club without some kind of LGBT+ inclusivity or safeguarding.”

It has been a particularly strange year for Glasgow Raptors chair Luke Harding. Taking over the role after the pandemic had already started, to call it a baptism of fire might be being generous. He has had to deal with matches and tournaments being cancelled, being unable to train for long spells and the risk …

Continue reading Luke Harding: “I definitely feel I wouldn’t have engaged in something like a rugby club without some kind of LGBT+ inclusivity or safeguarding.”

Chris Young: “If a top player comes out, good for him, but when it’s in your face you can see that everyone’s here to play sport at the end of the day, and everyone’s the same on the pitch.”

It should not be a surprise that Chris Young is a rugby player. Growing up in Larne, his dad – a life-long member of the local rugby club – had him playing touch and tag ruby from an early age. He was not allowed to play football at school, where rugby dominated in the form …

Continue reading Chris Young: “If a top player comes out, good for him, but when it’s in your face you can see that everyone’s here to play sport at the end of the day, and everyone’s the same on the pitch.”

Glasgow Raptors: “They can be who they are, and still enjoy sport at the same time.”

The summer of 2021 feels like it will be a fresh start in many ways for the Glasgow Raptors. Based in the part of Scotland hit by the most consistently severe restrictions during the pandemic, their recent return to training has been most welcome after being out of action since summer turned to autumn last …

Continue reading Glasgow Raptors: “They can be who they are, and still enjoy sport at the same time.”

Extra Time 4 with Pride of the Terraces

A prevalent theme for underrepresented communities in sport is that you can’t be what you can’t see. It is a refrain often repeated in women’s sport, football especially, but it is just as true for the LGBT+ community. It was particularly pleasing, therefore, to see such a prominence of articles across several media outlets for …

Continue reading Extra Time 4 with Pride of the Terraces

Kyle Yeats: “I know the club was a bit of a lifeline for me during the first lockdown, and I’m sure it has been for others too.”

As someone who was never particularly interested in sports growing up, the idea that Kyle Yeats would be doing PR for a rugby club never even came close to entering his mind. Holding the role of publicity officer at Aberdeen Taexali though, that is the exact situation that the 30-year-old finds himself in. Born and …

Continue reading Kyle Yeats: “I know the club was a bit of a lifeline for me during the first lockdown, and I’m sure it has been for others too.”

Cailum Lawson: “A lot of people just don’t think that gay people play sports. We do, and some of us are pretty damn good at it.”

Inclusive clubs are a place where people who have dropped out of sport can return in a welcoming environment. Equally, they can provide a chance for people who have never felt sport could be a place for them to take their first steps. For those who are well-versed in the sport of their choice though, …

Continue reading Cailum Lawson: “A lot of people just don’t think that gay people play sports. We do, and some of us are pretty damn good at it.”

Ruairidh Macdonald: “Everything that I had feared it was going to be was proven wrong.”

Growing up between Texas and Dubai, Ruairidh Macdonald had never come across an inclusive rugby club before coming home to Aberdeen for university. With the oil and gas industry sending his family around the world, Macdonald found himself far from the north east of Scotland, but he still managed to play rugby on the other …

Continue reading Ruairidh Macdonald: “Everything that I had feared it was going to be was proven wrong.”

Nick Heath: “On the whole, people are ready to say it’s whether you’re getting them a beer that they’re worried about, not their sexuality, and I’m happy with that.”

Nick Heath is an established voice in rugby broadcasting, having worked on World Cups, Six Nations and Premiership matches. But in lockdown, he has gone viral through his Life Commentaries and pub quizzes as well as putting plans together to continue his Cue Commentator podcast.