Eastbourne gets ready to welcome South Africa Rugby World Cup team

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The South African rugby team arrives in Eastbourne this weekend ahead of the start of the World Cup tournament.

The Springboks will be officially welcomed to the town with a ceremony at the Bandstand on Sunday (September 13).

Eastbourne Bandstand has been chosen to host the Rugby World Cup 2015 Welcome Ceremony for the South African rugby team on 13 September, along with sixteen other landmark venues across England and Wales chosen to host the ceremonies for the world’s best 20 teams.

The ceremony will be a celebration of the team’s achievements and will include team friends and family as well as the local community. All of the ceremonies will be an official welcome to England and Wales for the teams featuring their presentation of Tournament Caps and Rugby World Cup 2015 Participation Medals.

Taking place in venues including Hampton Court Palace, the Tower of London and Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama in Cardiff, the 20 Welcome Ceremonies will help broaden the reach of the tournament.

Eastbourne Borough Council’s senior head of tourism and enterprise Phil Evans said, “We’re delighted to have been selected to host this very exciting ceremony and play a part in England’s welcome to the world’s most elite Rugby players.

“The Bandstand is an iconic building providing a unique English setting in which to welcome South Africa ahead of their first game on 19 September.

“We’re passionate about sport in Eastbourne and see this as an opportunity to inspire visitors and the community to utilise our beautiful surroundings and excellent facilities to engage in sport.”

Managing director of England Rugby 2015, Steve Brown, said, “We are delighted to have secured Eastbourne’s Bandstand to host the Welcome Ceremony for South Africa. These landmark locations from across England and Wales broaden the reach of the tournament and will be great settings for us to welcome the players and management. These events will be a celebration of the team’s achievements, alongside a warm local welcome as the 20 best Teams arrive for Rugby World Cup 2015.”

Each ceremony will feature a performance of the official Rugby World Cup anthem, ‘World in Union’, by school choirs which were selected following a selection process, led by leading independent charity Youth Sport Trust, and Eastbourne College Choir has been selected to sing the anthem at the Bandstand to welcome South Africa.

Each ceremony will have four Cap and Medal Bearers which will be 16 to 24 year olds representing the legacy of Rugby World Cup 2015. They are selected from local clubs and educational institutions and include players, ‘Young Rugby Ambassadors’ and students from schools that are part of the RFU’s ‘All Schools’ programme.

For further information about the South African Welcome ceremony at Eastbourne Bandstand go to www.visiteastbourne.com/rugby

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