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The content of this page is primarily for the use of members of the Ulster Society of Rugby Football Referees (USRFR: The Society)

This area relates to the administration and support for society members whilst involved in Youth rugby.


Youth games have increased by 4.6% year on from 2016-17 with 502 games played by 75 teams, but it continues to represent in the region of 25% of rugby officiated by society referees.

It is difficult to accurately correlate the percentage of our resources used on age grade rugby as a significant number of our members would double job on a Saturday and do an age grade game in the morning, and then undertake some role in the afternoon be that as a TJ or even a second game.

We are comfortable estimating Saturday mornings take in the region of 33% of our available resources.

The protection of young persons when in association with our sport is paramount.

To assist in this the IRFU, the Ulster Branch and the Society have a number of support mechanisms in place.

Society members may seek guidance and support from our CHILD PROTECTION OFFICER:

Bill Halliday
07526 946595

Our rep to the Youth Committee is also available for more generic issues:

Michael Cairnduff
07880 743875

The Branch Child Protection Officer is:

Paul Whitten

You can view IRFU’s Safeguarding Policy here:

IRFU Safeguarding Policy

To obtain further understanding of the workings of the policy, view the IRFU Safeguarding page

The USRFR Code of Conduct and Policy on Child Protection can be found here:

USRFR Code of Conduct & Child Protection Policy

There is NO Head Injury Assessment (HIA) in domestic rugby.

For guidance in suspected concussion management of a player, view:

IRFU Concussion Guide

IRFU’s Concussion Advice for Referees

All significant injuries which may be defined as “in need of hospital treatment” (which includes suspected concussion), must be reported directly by the referee to the branch to ensure player welfare matters.

The only details required for this from the referee will be Club, Player name and injury type, e.g. suspected broken ankle/suspected concussion.

It is the club’s responsibility to complete and return the more comprehensive branch report form to jill.mccullough@ulsterrugby.com

In addition, if a match official has been forced to ensure a player’s welfare by his or her removal, the referee should report the matter to the Hon. Sec. of the Society, detailing club, player name and level/type of reluctance to comply with directive: hon.sec.usrfr@gmail.com

For help in location of clubs, view the club location finder.

For help in the contacting of clubs, see below:

List of Club Contacts

Team sheets are required for all youth fixtures.

When receiving a team sheet please ensure it is:

a) Readable
b) Has a full given and family name (i.e. no initials, nicknames or single surname/given name).
c) There is a name for each player.
d) The shirt numbers match the names.
e) ALL players trained as front row replacements must be identified on the team sheet prior to kick off.
f) You retain the sheet in a safe place for two weeks.

If A, B or C are not in effect the team are in contravention of the competition’s regulations and are liable to sanction.

Sanctions are significant for the clubs and are designed to educate them not to impede the system. When there is an allegation of an illegal player participating for a team it is these lists which are requested by the Branch.

The same list is your reference when submitting a yellow or red card report and if reporting injuries. Referees are urged to get the lists BEFORE they allow the game to commence.

Guidance for referees on submitting match results via text, including cancelled or abandoned games can be found here:

Text Return Guide 2019

In the event of selection for a game at Kingspan Stadium please refer and comply to the entry protocols.