BRIDPORT Rugby Club enjoyed a healthy turnout for their Junior Awards Evening, celebrating the Blues' achievements this season.

In total, some 132 players attended to receive their medals and awards ranging from Tiny Tots to under-17s, parents, coaches and club officials in a heaving clubhouse.

Presided over by president Peter Brook, each age group player received an inscribed medal.

Within each of the ten age categories there were awards for 'Player's Player', 'Most Improved Player', 'Coach's Selected Player', and 'Core Value Player'.

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This latter award is for a player who has demonstrated sportsmanship, teamwork, respect, enjoyment and discipline throughout the season.

Jo Thompson (registration), Susana Pocull (kit sales), Zara English and Jean Gregory (player meals) were thanked for their commitment, and received flowers, whilst Charlie English (junior fixture secretary) received a good bottle of claret.

There was also nostalgia as Jesse Johnson made the combined under-16 and under-17 awards.

After 13 years of duty as coach, junior fixture secretary for five years, RFU course coordinator, and junior rugby vice-chairman, Johnson is handing over his under-16s and under-17s to club chairman and Colts coach Julian Hussey.

After awarding his 'Coaches Player Award' to Harrison Wilkins, and 'Core Value Award' to Kian Bentley, Johnson confirmed he will still organise the courses and remain a member of the club, but will major on qualifying as a senior referee.

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: Jesse Johnson, left, with England star Lewis Moody Picture: JESSE JOHNSONJesse Johnson, left, with England star Lewis Moody Picture: JESSE JOHNSON

With Louis Browne already qualified, we will now see two Bridport alumni in the upper regions of rugby.

Within the frisson of friendly rivalry, the under-16s and under-17s had also beaten the mighty Dorchester.

One hilarious feature of the evening was Brett Chant, who recently retired after clocking up over 600 games for the senior side.

Nearly bursting and repeatedly crossing his legs due to the length of proceedings, he quickly presented to Johnson many gifts of appreciation from grateful parents, and then departed in haste through the crowd to the small room! We assume he made it.

All in all, this was a tremendous evening, with three new sponsors stepping forward, food from the van of local supplier Jack Higgins, and conviviality late into the night.