Banbury’s RAFA Club a finalist for three national awards


It’s a major turnaround for the club, which contemplated closing during the pandemic

A Banbury club, which supports service personnel past and present, has gone from contemplating closing its doors to being nominated for three prestigious national awards.

The RAF Association Banbury Branch and Branch Club, known affectionately as the RAFA Club, collapsed during the pandemic and members considered disbanding the branch.   But as their base at Newland House on Broad Street was the only operational tri-service veterans community hub within a 50 mile radius, the club’s President Chris Adams decided he couldn’t let that happen.

Now the RAFA Club has been names as a finalist in three categories at The Club Awards, which celebrates the best UK clubs.

During the pandemic membership had dwindled to below 60 and the building was in need of some attention.   The hard work and commitment of a small and dedicated team of volunteers saw the club reopen to once again provide a safe and welcoming environment for military veterans.

The club’s new Committee have introduced a number of initiatives to increase usage of Newland House, including Sunday carvery lunches, ladies’ and men’s darts teams and aunt sally teams.  The transformation means the club is now a flourishing, self-supporting business, which is open six nights a week and as needed during the day.

The Club Awards are now in their 30th year, celebrating UK clubs of all shapes and sizes.   Banbury’s RAFA Club is a finalist in the Business Initiative of the Year category, alongside the Charity Club of the Year and Turnaround Club of the Year categories.   An award ceremony is due to take place on Wednesday, November 16 in Leicester.

President Chris Adams said: “It is an honour to lead the Branch and Club volunteers and what has been achieved in such a short period of time for the Military Veterans and the Wider Community is truly awe-inspiring.”

Published: by Banbury FM Newsteam

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