Policies & Code of Conduct
Summary of how we and the RFU use your data
- Ashford Rugby Football Club uses your personal data to manage and administer your membership and your involvement with its teams and club, and to keep in contact with you for these purposes.
- Some data is shared with the RFU, who use your data to regulate, develop and manage the game.
- Where we or the RFU rely on your consent, such as any consent we seek for email marketing, you can withdraw this consent at any time.
- Amongst the data we collect from you may be medical (including injury) information. We will hold this where you (or your parent) have given consent, so that we can ensure we are aware of your condition and can that you are supported appropriately.
- Where you work in a particular role within the game, you may be required to undergo a Disclosure & Barring Service check using the RFU’s eDBS system. The result of this check will be input into your Game Management Service (GMS) record.
What does this policy cover?
This policy describes how Ashford Rugby Football Club (also referred to as “the Club”, “we” or “us”) will make use of the data we handle in relation to our members and players, including our use of the Game Management System (“GMS”) provided by the Rugby Football Union (“RFU”). The policy also describes the RFU’s use of data on GMS.
It also describes your data protection rights, including a right to object to some of the processing which we carry out. More information about your rights, and how to exercise them, is set out in the “What rights do I have?” section.
What information do we collect?
We collect and process personal data from you or your parent when you join and when we carry out annual renewals of your membership. This includes:
- your name
- your gender,
- your date of birth,
- your RFU ID (as assigned in GMS)
- your home address, email address and phone number;
- your passport and NI details, where we have to check your eligibility or ability to work for us;
- your type of membership and involvement in particular teams, or any key role you may have been allocated, such as Chair, Safeguarding Lead, Membership Secretary etc.;
- your payment and/or bank account details, where you provide these to pay for membership;
- your marketing preferences, including any consents you have given us;
- your medical conditions or disability, where you provide this to us with your consent (or your parent’s consent) to ensure we are aware of any support we may need to provide to you.
Some information will be generated as part of your involvement with us, in particular data about your performance, involvement in particular matches in match reports and details of any disciplinary issues or incidents you may be involved in on and off the pitch, such as within health and safety records.
What information do we receive from third parties?
Sometimes, we receive information about you from third parties. For example, if you are a child, we may be given information about you by your parents.
We may receive information relating to your existing registrations with other clubs or rugby bodies or disciplinary history from the RFU through GMS. Additionally, for certain role holders or those working with children, we may receive information from the Disclosure and Barring Service and RFU on the status of any DBS check you have been required to take.
How do we use this information, and what is the legal basis for this use?
We process this personal data for the following purposes:
- To fulfil a contract, or take steps linked to a contract: this is relevant where you make a payment for your membership and any merchandise, or enter a competition. This includes:
- taking payments;
- communicating with you;
- providing and arranging the delivery or other provision of products, prizes or services;
- As required by the Club to conduct our business and pursue our legitimate interests, in particular:
- we will use your information to manage and administer your membership and your involvement with its teams and club, and to keep in contact with you for these purposes;
- we will also use data to maintain records of our performances and history, including match reports, score lines and team sheets;
- we use CCTV cameras to maintain the security of our premises, and may use this video to investigate incidents at the Club or its premises
- we may choose to send you promotional materials and offers by post or by phone, or by email where we want to send you offers relating to similar products and services that you have already bought
- Where you give us consent:
- we will send you direct marketing or promotional material by email;
- we may handle medical or disability information you or your parent provides to us, to ensure we support you appropriately;
- on other occasions where we ask you for consent, we will use the data for the purpose which we explain at that time.
- For purposes which are required by law:
- we maintain records such as health and safety records and accounting records in order to meet specific legal requirements;
- we ensure, where you will work with children, that you have undergone an appropriate DBS check – this is also carried out with your consent.
- where you hold a role at the Club requiring us to check your right to work, we may process information to meet our statutory duties;
- we may respond to requests by government or law enforcement authorities conducting an investigation.
How does the RFU use any of my information?
The RFU provides GMS, but make its own use of the following information:
- your name;
- your gender;
- your date of birth;
- your RFU ID (as assigned in GMS);
- your home address, email address and phone number; and
- your type of membership and involvement in particular teams at the Club, or any key role you may have been allocated, such as Chair, Safeguarding Lead, Membership Secretary etc.
The RFU uses this information as follows:
- As required by the RFU to conduct its business and pursue its legitimate interests, in particular:
- communicating with you or about you where necessary to administer Rugby in England, including responding to any questions you send to the RFU about GMS;
- administering and ensuring the eligibility of players, match officials and others involved in English rugby – this may involve the receipt of limited amounts of sensitive data in relation to disabled players, where they are registered for a disabled league or team, or in relation to anti-doping matters;
- maintaining records of the game as played in England, in particular maintaining details of discipline and misconduct;
- monitoring use of GMS, and using this to help it monitor, improve and protect its content and services and investigate any complaints received from you or from others about GMS;
- maintaining statistics and conducting analysis on the make-up of rugby’s participants;
- ensuring compliance with the current RFU Rules and Regulations including those on the affiliation of clubs, referee societies, constituent bodies and other rugby bodies, and registration of players; and
- communicating with you to ask for your opinion on RFU initiatives.
- For purposes which are required by law:
- The RFU will ensure, where you will work with children and where this is required, that you have undergone an appropriate DBS check – this is also carried out with your consent.
- The RFU may respond to requests by government or law enforcement authorities conducting an investigation.
Withdrawing consent or otherwise objecting to direct marketing
Wherever we rely on your consent, you will always be able to withdraw that consent, although we may have other legal grounds for processing your data for other purposes, such as those set out above. In some cases, we are able to send you direct marketing without your consent, where we rely on our legitimate interests. You have an absolute right to opt-out of direct marketing, or profiling we carry out for direct marketing, at any time. You can do this by following the instructions in the communication where this is an electronic message, or by contacting us using the details set out below in the “How do I get in touch with you or the RFU?” section.
Who will we share this data with, where and when?
Some limited information may be shared with other stakeholders in rugby, such as other clubs, Constituent Bodies, referee societies, league organisers, so that they can maintain appropriate records and assist us in organising matches and administering the game.
Personal data may be shared with government authorities and/or law enforcement officials if required for the purposes above, if mandated by law or if required for the legal protection of our or the RFU’s legitimate interests in compliance with applicable laws.
Personal data will also be shared with third party service providers, who will process it on our behalf for the purposes identified above. Such third parties include the RFU as the provider of GMS.
Where information is transferred outside the EEA, and where this is to a stakeholder or vendor in a country that is not subject to an adequacy decision by the EU Commission, data is adequately protected by EU Commission approved standard contractual clauses, an appropriate Privacy Shield certification or a vendor’s Processor Binding Corporate Rules. A copy of the relevant mechanism can be provided for your review on request.
What rights do I have?
You have the right to ask us for a copy of your personal data; to correct, delete or restrict (stop any active) processing of your personal data; and to obtain the personal data you provide to us for a contract or with your consent in a structured, machine readable format.
In addition, you can object to the processing of your personal data in some circumstances (in particular, where we don’t have to process the data to meet a contractual or other legal requirement, or where we are using the data for direct marketing).
These rights may be limited, for example if fulfilling your request would reveal personal data about another person, or if you ask us to delete information which we are required by law to keep or have compelling legitimate interests in keeping.
You have the same rights for data held by the RFU for its own purposes on GMS.
To exercise any of these rights, you can get in touch with us– or, as appropriate, the RFU or its data protection officer – using the details set out below. If you have unresolved concerns, you have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office.
Much of the information listed above must be provided on a mandatory basis so that we can make the appropriate legal checks and register you as required by RFU Rules and Regulations. We will inform you which information is mandatory when it is collected. Some information is optional, particularly information such as your medical information. If this is not provided, we may not be able to provide you with appropriate assistance, services or support.
How do I get in touch with you or the RFU?
We hope that we can satisfy queries you may have about the way we process your data. If you have any concerns about how we process your data, [or would like to opt out of direct marketing], you can get in touch at [email address] or by writing to [physical address
If you have any concerns about how the RFU process your data, you can get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to The Data Protection Officer, Rugby Football Union, Twickenham Stadium, 200 Whitton Road, Twickenham TW2 7BA.
How long will you retain my data?
We process the majority of your data for as long as you are an active member and for 10 years after this.
Where we process personal data for marketing purposes or with your consent, we continue to process the data unless you ask us to stop, when we will only process the data for a short period after this (to allow us to implement your requests). We also keep a record of the fact that you have asked us not to send you direct marketing or to process your data indefinitely so that we can respect your request in future.
Where we process personal data in connection with performing a contract or for a competition, we keep the data for 10 years.
We will retain information held to maintain statutory records in line with appropriate statutory requirements or guidance.
The RFU will maintain records of individuals who have registered on GMS, records of DBS checks and the resulting outcomes and other disciplinary matters for such period as is set out in the RFU’s privacy notice to be set out on www.englandrugby.com.
Records of your involvement in a particular match, on team sheets, on results pages or in match reports may be held indefinitely both by us and the RFU in order to maintain a record of the game.
- ARFC Players Code of Conduct
- The club expects fair play at all times. Shake hands with match officials and opponents after the game (whatever the result).
- Do not become involved in disputes with officials, opponents or spectators. Do not use foul, abusive or racist language towards officials, opponents or spectators. Do not applaud the sending-off or the errors of opponents.
- Let the referee handle incidents in the game. Do not retaliate against opponents.
- Treat the changing rooms and facilities of all Clubs you visit with respect.
- Teamwork, effort and enjoyment are as important as winning. Learn to win and lose with dignity.
- Remember you are representing your Club. Be sensible and enjoy yourself.
For further information contact the club’s Safeguarding Officer or Assistant Safeguarding Officer.
- ARFC Selection Policy
Ashford RFC is a community Rugby club which strives to be inclusive and provide Rugby for all local people who wish to play.
This principal underpins the selection policy of the club which is designed to promote commitment to all aspects of the club and in particular playing and training.
1.0 Selection Committee
The selection committee consists of the following persons:
- Chairman of selectors (The role of the chairman of selectors within selection is to ensure fairness and consistency in selection, taking into account the principles of being a legitimate club member and being committed to training and playing);
- Coaching Team;
- Team managers;
- Team Captains.
The aim of the selection policy is to provide and manage a selection process that enables the club to establish:
- A successful sustainable 1st XV on which the club’s ultimate league status is dependant
- A thriving and successful team structure that promotes healthy competition for places in all senior sides, and provides all players with a fair and equal opportunity to both progress and enjoy their rugby at Ashford to the full.
- To fulfil all our fixtures to the best of our ability. Where necessary, no higher team match will be cancelled by Ashford when there are sufficient players for a lower side’s match to be played.
While the club will always endeavour to manage selection to the following rules there may be times when it is not possible due to an exceptional circumstance.
- The PLAYER must be a paid up playing club member or new player intending to become a member? (form filled in signed and payment method sorted)
Players in default of membership or subs cannot play until the default is either paid or
resolved by agreement. NO PAY NO PLAY
- The onus is on players to inform their respective Captain of their availability forthe following weeks on the Saturday or at the latest by the followingMonday. Otherwise, that player will be deemed as unavailable.
- Players who miss a game should notify their previous Captain oftheir future availability.
- Players who fail to play when selected without notifying a memberof the selection committee will not be considered for selection untila reasonable explanation has been received.
- Each week the merits of individual players will be considered whenteam selection is made.
- Preference will be given to those players that attend club trainingsessions.Training record must be seen to be relevant to a players selection whenever possible? (Not a no train no play policy, but recognising the difference between can’t train and won’t train)
- It is EXPECTED that all members of the 1st XV squad attend clubtraining.
- No player will be dropped more than one team at a time, converselyit will not be usual to promote any player more than one team at atime. A Player who is dropped from or benched for a higher team the week before, must start in the lower team the following week.
- Any player who is selected for a lower side the following week willbe given an explanation by the coach or captain of his previousteam.
- Under normal circumstances a player will not be selected on thebench for more than one week at a time. If this is desired, then the player must be consulted and given the choice of playing down the sides.
- Players returning from injury should be passed fit by the club’s physio and selected at a level appropriate to the injury and time the player has been out the game.
- All players are expected to provide a means of contact for communicating with them. In normal circumstances this will be via email or mobile phone. If neither of these is possible, the player should come to an agreement with their team captain. The club will respect individuals’ privacy, with these details only being available to senior team captains who may need to contact individuals at short notice.
Any player who believes that they have not been given either fair treatment or consideration should raise their concerns with the Chairman of selectors or Captain immediately. It is accepted that on occasions this POLICY may lead to a player not being selected who coaches and captains may view as a stronger player.
The club firmly believes however that in the longer term this policy will cement the principles that underpin membership of the club and provide a fair, open and transparent process that favours those most committed to all aspects of playing membership.
- ARFC Coaches Code of Conduct
All rugby coaches must respect the rights, dignity and worth of every young person with whom they work with and treat them equally within the context of rugby union. Do not behave in a way that discriminates against gender, race or disability.
All rugby coaches must place the physical and emotional well being of all
young players above all other considerations, including the development of
performance. Recognise the importance of fun and enjoyment when officiating or coaching young players. Provide verbal feedback in a positive way during game. Explain decisions – most young players are still learning. The relationship that a rugby coach develops with the players with whom they work must be based on mutual trust and respect. Do not overtly criticise young players or use language which may cause the player to lose confidence or self esteem.
All rugby coaches must recognise that it is illegal for young players under 18 to drink alcohol. Do not drink alcohol before you work, or while you are working with the young players. Do not smoke when you are working with the young players. Do not engage in any inappropriate contact with young players.
All rugby coaches must encourage young players to accept responsibility for their own behaviour and performance. Do not tolerate verbal abuse or bad language from players or supporters. Be a positive role model. Never at any time, under any circumstances should force be used to check a young player’s aggressive behaviour towards you or his/her fellow players.
All rugby coaches must recognise that safety is paramount. Ensure that all
equipment and facilities are safe and age appropriate. As rugby is a physical game, do not join in, you are too big! However in order to reach or coach certain situations, a degree of physical contact is sometimes necessary. When this arises tell the player before hand in order to gain their consent. All rugby coaches must ensure that all activities undertaken are appropriate to the age, maturity, experience and ability of the young players. Do not allow a young player to continue playing if you have doubts about their fitness.
Do not shower with young players – agree a timetable with the other coaches. Do not be alone with young players at any time – if a young player comes into the dressing room ensure another adult is present. Do not change in the same area as young players. Do not make sexually explicit remarks to young players even in fun. Do not give a lift to a player unless there are other young people or adults in the car and the parents are aware. Do not take a young player to your home. Where mixed teams compete away from home they should always be accompanied by at least one male and one female adult.
Do not administer first aid unless qualified to do so. Any player injured during a match or training session should be handled with extreme care by someone qualified to do so. It is important in the case of neck and back injuries that the player is not moved in any way and if in doubt, an ambulance called immediately. Under NO circumstances should a player complaining of neck or back injuries be moved by those unqualified to do so and the use of stretcher should NEVER be considered.
Children must not be left unattended after training/matches and it is the
coach’s responsibility to contact parents should such a situation arise.
Familiarise yourself with Ashford RFC’s Safeguarding Policy, and know
what to do should a situation arise. Report, in writing, to the Club or
Safeguarding Officer, behaviour by adults which you feel contravenes RFU
Child Safeguarding Policy.
- Verbal bullying by coaches/parents/spectators
- Physical Abuse by coaches/parents/spectators
- Inappropriate or aggressive contact by an adult to a young person
- Verbal abuse directed at you by young people or adults
If you accidentally hurt a player, or cause distress in any manner, or the player appears to respond in a sexual manner to your actions, or misunderstands, or misinterprets something you have done, you must report the incident to the Club’s Safeguarding Officer as soon as possible. This must also be supported by a brief written statement. Parents will also be informed of the occurrence by the Club’s Safeguarding Officer. This code of conduct should be read in conjunction with the guidance set by the Rugby Football Union “The Welfare of Young People in Rugby Union Guidance”. Copies of which are available from RFU web-site (www.rfu.com) or from Jo Amner, ARFC, Safeguarding Officer.
When refereeing young players, it is recommended that match officials:
- Recognise the importance of fun and enjoyment when officiating young player.
- Provide verbal feedback in a positive way during games.
- Appreciate the needs of the players.
- Be a positive role model.
- Recognise that safety is paramount.
- Explain decisions – most young players are still learning.
- Do not tolerate verbal abuse.
- Do not shower or change in the same area as young players.
- Do not be alone with young players at any time.
- Do not check studs without the coach being present.
- Do not administer first aid.
- Do not allow a young player to continue playing if you have doubts about their fitness.
- Do not engage in any inappropriate contact with young players.
- Do not make sexually explicit remarks to young players even in fun.
ALL coaches and volunteers have a responsibility to protect the children from child abuse and themselves from wrongful accusations.
There are four main types of abuse:
- NEGLECT: In a rugby situation, neglect may occur when:
- Young players are left alone without proper supervision.
- A young player is exposed to unnecessary heat or cold without fluids or
- A young player is exposed to an unacceptable risk of injury.
- Unexplained weight loss.
- The child is dirty and unkempt.
- EMOTIONAL: In rugby situation, emotional abuse may occur when coaches:
- Provide repeated negative feedback.
- Repeatedly ignore a young player’s efforts to progress.
- Repeatedly demand performance levels above those of which the young
player is capable.
- SEXUAL: In a rugby situation, the close proximity of coaches and others, to young people provides opportunities for potential abusers to exploit their
position of trust to sexually abuse.
- PHYSICAL: In a rugby situation, physical abuse may occur when:
- Coaches expose young players to exercise/training which disregards the
- Coaches expose young players to injury due to overplaying, over-training or fatigue.
- Coaches expose young players to alcohol, or give them the opportunity to
drink alcohol below the legal age.
- Coaches expose young players to performance enhancing drugs and
recommend that they take them.
- Coaches expose young players to exercise/training which disregards the
All adults who work with young people are in a position of trust, which has
been invested in them by the parents, the sport and by the young people.
In this position of trust it must be recognised that there are certain boundaries in the coach player relationship that must not be crossed.
This mutual trusting relationship could mean that a child discloses highly sensitive and personal information to you. It is important that this is always handled in the correct manner in order to protect both the child and yourself. If a child tells you that someone either in or out of the rugby club environment is abusing her or him you should;
- Listen, do not prompt or add words.
- Reassure the child that he/she was right to tell you.
- Be Honest and explain that you will need to tell someone else in order to help and protect him/her.
- Share concerns with the Club’s Safeguarding Officer, Club safeguarding
procedures will then be followed.
- Accurately record on an incident form what the child has said to you and
what action you have taken. The Club’s Safeguarding Officer can help you with this.
Confidentiality in matters relating to child protection is vital and information
must only be shared with the Club’s Safeguarding Officer and nominated
For further information contact the Club Safeguarding Officer or Assistant Safeguarding Officer.
- ARFC Parents, Spectators and Guardians Code of Conduct
- Acknowledge the value and importance of volunteer referees. They give time freely. Do not abuse match officials, however much you disagree with their decision, emphasise respect for the referee by not questioning his decision.
- Remember your actions influence the mood of the players and the game. Do not applaud foul play, and do not incite your players to foul. Do not use foul, abusive or racist language to players or other spectators. Do not ridicule opponents for their mistakes.
- Recognise that children play for fun. They are not miniature professionals or internationals. Encourage all players and applaud their efforts.
- Teach the children that taking part and trying their best is more important than the result of the match.
- Stand away from the touchline. You must not enter the field of play during a game unless asked to do so by the referee.
- Remember, when you are supporting your team, you are representing the
- You are subject to the laws of the game. You can be cautioned, reported,
sent away from the ground, and suspended from attending any matches.
In the event that any player/spectator/parent/guardian contravenes any of the items listed above, disciplinary actions could be carried out. Be sensible and enjoy yourself.
For further information contact the Club Safeguarding Officer or Assistant Safeguarding Officer.
- ARFC Photographic Policy
- ARFC Child Protection Policy
- ARFC Volunteer Policy
Recruitment and Selection of Coaches & Volunteers
- Ashford RFC will ensure that any new coach or volunteer who is working with young people will undergo a CRB disclosure.
- Ashford RFC will ensure that all new coaches and volunteers are given an induction which will include details about the appropriate Code of Conduct and Code of Good Practice, details relating to their roles and responsibilities and details about Child Protection issues.
- Ashford RFC will assist with the appropriate training of all new coaches and volunteers.
- Ashford RFC will where possible take up references if the new Coach or Volunteer has worked with young people before.
- Ashford RFC monitors all its coaches and volunteers to identify new training
requirements and if necessary to highlight concerns regarding behaviour that does not fit with ‘Best Practice’.
- RFU Photographic Policy