Ossett Rounders player, Claire, prepares to meet the Rounders England board

The first Rounders England Board meeting of 2019 is this weekend! The Board are responsible for ensuring Rounders England delivers its strategic plans and are excited to welcome member Claire Priestley-O’Keeffe (Ossett Rounders Club) to sit in the meeting and fill the most important chair in the room – the customer.

We caught up with Claire to find out why she is interested in this opportunity and what her expectations are of the meeting.


I’m Claire Priestley-O’Keeffe. I live in Wakefield, West Yorkshire and play Rounders with Ossett Rounders Club. I’ve been a member with the club for 3½ years, although it feels like much longer than that! I joined after moving to the area and wanted to meet new people. As with pretty much every member I’ve met, and new members who join the club, I enjoyed playing Rounders at school, and that was the last time I’d played. I’d seen advertisements for Rounders teams in the past, but they were now too far away from where I was living, so I searched the internet and found Ossett!

I found out about the empty chair opportunity from a Rounders England email. After I read it I felt intrigued and mused on it for a couple of weeks before I thought I’d just throw my name into the hat.

I’m not sure what to expect at the meeting. I’ve never really sat in on a ‘board meeting’ before. I guess I signed up to do it because I’m a bit of a nosey parker and the opportunity quenched my curiosity. I’m assuming it will follow the same lines as our club committee meeting, though in a more formal location rather than someone’s living room!

It is exciting to hear if there are any new initiatives that may be discussed or are in the pipeline. It was great for Ossett Rounders club to be involved in Stonewall’s ‘Rainbow Laces’  campaign, alongside Rounders England. Such things make you feel proud to be part of delivering positive messages and supporting change. It would also be good to find out about the other areas of Rounders throughout the country. It’s very easy to get absorbed in your own club, or region, so it will be good to try and learn about what other groups, teams or clubs are up to.

I guess my ‘take away’ would be knowledge and experience about Rounders England – what they stand for, what they do, meet the people behind the scenes that are making things happen, and hopefully a couple of biscuits!

The next Empty Chair will be filled at the Board meeting on 16th March.

Article by Rounders England:

Rounders England is a non-profit sport’s governing body (NGB) in England.

Based in Sheffield it provides a structure for the sport from the Board, local deliverers and teams right the way through to individual members and volunteers.