Join The Society

First Steps:-

Referee Qualifications

If you are just thinking about taking up refereeing, your first step will be to complete the RFU Refereeing Award Level 2.This nationally recognised qualification is delivered up and down the country and provides the necessary basic understanding of the laws of the game and  introduces the application of the laws in practice. Information on available courses can be found here.

Having completed the Level 2 award, all referees need to complete the RFU Headcase Concussion Awareness course for Match Officials. This is an online education module found here.

Membership of Somerset Society

Having completed the course many participants may remain within their local club as a club referee. However those who wish to develop and test their ability as a match official can then contact the Somerset Referee Recruitment Officer and apply to join the society. Please use the contact form to discuss your interest in becoming a society referee. Alternatively please complete the Membership Application form here and email the completed form to the Recruitment Officer who will be in touch to discuss your membership and your aspirations as a county referee in order that we can explain appointments, society meetings, fitness and training and answer any questions that you may have about getting started.

All new referees will be invited to be part of the Somerset Academy Referees. This group operates to provide a positive and supported training environment to assist new referees during their first 2 seasons as County referee. Academy referees will be observed during their first 5 games to identify areas to develop and to give feedback to our new referees so that they get the most out of their new role.

Transferring Referees:-

If you are an existing referee moving into Somerset, please contact the recruitment officer with your application and also any available reports from your current county and your current grading in order that we can enter you onto the Society Appointments system.

Young Referees:-

Young referees between the ages of 14 – 18 should also see the section on the Somerset Young Match Officials. Within the RFU, England Rugby Referee Association and Somerset Referee Society, we are very supportive of the opportunity to develop young match officials and perhaps find the next individual to become and “Elite Referee”. As in the playing game there is a pathway for development that aims to support all referees to reach the highest levels in Match Officiating, Somerset Referee Society is proud to have supported many from our ranks who now referee and assistant referee all the way to the top of the game. Please contact the Recruitment Officer to discuss interest in becoming part of the Young Match Officials

Female Referees:-

In recent years the women’s game has grown significantly. Off the back of England Red Roses, and now the Tyrells Premiership, women’s rugby continues to flourish. In Somerset we are proud to have rugby played from Junior Girls Rugby, through Women’s University Rugby and at many clubs across the County. As a society we are also very keen to see more female match officials in the game. The society is very proud of one of the game’s trailblazers in Claire Daniels, a Somerset Referee who continues to achieve at the highest levels of the game, and now we would like to find the next female referees to follow in her footsteps!! Please contact the Recruitment Officer to discuss opportunities for development in the society.

Final Stage:-

Appointments to fixtures.

The referee appointments system for Somerset Referee Society begins with the online fixture system, www.whostheref.com. Through this portal, all fixtures in the county are uploaded for the season. The appointments committee, Chaired by Reg Lewis, then meet on a monthly basis to allocate fixtures to each referee in the society based upon their grading, their development program and the fixtures available per weekend.

The first step for every Somerset Referee having joined the society is to register on Who’s The Ref. The attached Who’s The Ref User Guide will provide step by step instructions on how to complete your registration on the system. The appointments committee will the approve the application.

Once registered on the system the following standards are requested by the Appointments Committee.

All referees are requested to log on to Who’s The Ref no later than the 7th of the month and update their availability for the following month. i.e. in January referees to provide availability for February and so on.

By the middle of the month the Appointments committee will convene and fixtures will be allocated. An email will be sent out listing the following months fixtures. Referees are required to log on and accept their fixtures. If declining any fixtures please provide a reason for declining.

Having accepted or declined fixtures, all referees are required to then further update their availability. During the month changes often arise and it is very helpful to the committee if they are able to offer games to referees at last minute. However it can be very frustrating when doing this if the availability shown is not accurate.

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