Attention of clubs and members of SRUSR is drawn to the following RFU Game Regulation concerning confirmation of the match official prior to the game:
(a) Save where a cup match is held on a neutral ground (in which case the RFU has responsibility), it is the responsibility of the home club to confirm, at least 48 hours before the match with (as appropriate) the RFU, its Referees Society, or the Federated Society of which the home club’s Referees Society is a member, that a referee (and in National Leagues, the touch judges) has been appointed.
(b) It is the home club’s responsibility to liaise [make connection] with the appointed match official(s) directly [not involving a third party] to ensure that the match official(s) is (are) aware of the arrangements [confirmation of appointment, time of kick-off, colours of teams etc.] and have the appropriate directions to the venue for the match (or any change of venue).
Leaving a message on a telephone answering machine, or with a family member, or indeed with any other person who may answer the call, is NOT regarded as making direct contact with the official(s), neither is sending a text message or an e-mail acceptable (without getting a positive response from the referee), and a further call within the appropriate time scale is required in order to make direct contact.
If direct contact cannot be made with the match official(s) within the time scale provided for in 12.1.3 (a), then the home club should make direct contact with their Referees Society Reappointments Officer to seek a replacement official for the game.
Referees Societies have been asked to make sure that their clubs are aware of this document and its contents, and to emphasise that appointed referees who do not have this direct contact from a club administrator may not turn up to referee the game at their club. Under these circumstances the club will have to face the consequences of this failure to make the necessary direct contact that is required by RFU Regulation.
The appointment of referees to games is a contract between the clubs and the Referees Society that normally supplies those clubs, therefore Referee Societies need to make sure that clubs conform to their procedures of how and when direct contact with the referee to confirm appointments is made, adhering within their procedures to the RFU Regulation 12.1.3 (b) on Confirmation, and not undermining it.
Note from the Chairman: “I hope that our members, having not received any contact from a club, would not be tempted to not turn up, but would make contact with the club and then inform the society so that we may then decide what action (if any) we should take.”
Link to RFU Rules and Regulations