The end of last month saw a local rugby club hit a major milestone - their one hundredth year in existence.

Ardrossan Academicals RFC celebrated their centenary year with a dinner, hosted at the Seamill Hydro in West Kilbride.

There were close to 200 players, both past in present, in attendance, as well as club members, guests and speakers. They all enjoyed a wonderful evening of good food and excellent company.

The club welcomed former Scotland and British and Irish Lions John Beattie and Jason White as guest speakers.

Another special guest appearance came courtesy of the Calcutta Cup - awarded to the winners of the Scotland Vs England match at the Six Nations tournament. Scotland currently hold this trophy.

The evening kicked off with Dougie Tyler giving the president’s welcome before passing the ball to Bill Nolan. Grace was given by Willie Gibson.

After the meal, speaker John Beattie talked about the history of the club highlighting the many past players who started at Ardrossan and went onto play at an extremely high level, at international level and against the New Zealand international team The All Blacks.

He was answered by Bryan Gossman, one of the Accies’ former Scottish international players, who gave a sterling speech.

In a break with tradition, there followed a question and answering section loosely based on a chat show format where Jason White and John Beattie fielded questions from Bill Nolan and the audience.

Both Jason and John took time to speak to our under 18’s and first team player Eben Cairns, who played with the Scotland’s under 18s team and will be playing for a Premier club next season with some sage advice.

This was closely followed by the prize giving ceremony for the club’s senior players and volunteers.

Player of the Year went to Scott Campbell, Young Player of the Year to Ben Rodgers and Most Improved Player was Owen Phillips.

A special volunteer award, named the ‘Accie of the Year’, went to Allan Merry.

Four members were awarded Life Membership for their support and dedication to the club: Brian Campbell, Willie Gibson, Iain Robertson and John Pringle.

A club spokesperson said: “Well done to all award winners and thank you to all our sponsors who supported the event.

“Thank you to the staff of the Seamill Hydro for their efforts in making the evening a success.

“Thank you to the group of volunteers who worked tirelessly to bring the event together, Bill Nolan , Brian Kean, Wylie Nichol, Brian Campbell, Peter Gossman, Gordon Christie, Mark Gibson and Ali Cairns.”