This year has seen another uptick in the number of new leagues in Scotland, with both Helgin Roller Derby and Wee County Roller Derby joining the ranks of Inverness City, Fair City, Ayrshire and Doonhame Derby Dolls as leagues making the journey towards their first public bout. As traditional, we’re covering all of these leagues together in a Review of the Year, as usually bouts are a big part of what the bouting leagues cover about in their own articles. Since we have so many non-bouting leagues this year, however, we’re splitting this article over several pages for readability – click the links at the bottom of each page to move between them.
Every league forms its own relationships with the wider derby community when starting out, but some of our non-bouting leagues have developed particularly close ties.
Inverness City Roller Derby were very happy that Helgin Roller Derby started up nearby in Elgin, and the two have been combining resources:
“Helgin are fantastic and are growing so fast.
We try to go through as often as possible to coach them and help them with anything they may need help with and they often come through to us for a session and with such a big turn out at these sessions it boosts team morale.”
Helgin are equally happy with the relationship, as they benefit from ICRD’s experience and numbers. “All of our skaters rave about Nat from ICRD’s sessions for days afterwards – she really works us hard and we learn a lot! […] We’re looking to link up with ICRD at least once a month in 2016, so that we can all get a bit more contact and pack skills practice – something that can prove difficult if you’ve got a session with low numbers.”
Of course, Helgin have also been keeping up their connections with the team to the East of them, and Granite City have been as supportive as they were at Helgin’s founding, even donating kit and support for their fresh meat sessions. The Brawlermen also donated Power of Scotland’s PudZ for a training session, “Our session with PudZ from Power of Scotland was brilliant – it was our first proper session where we got to practice game tactics and we learned so much!”, which also included ICRD, “we had PudZ from POS run a session on walls and pack work which was also tremendously good fun.”
Meanwhile, at the south end of the country, Dumfries’ Doonhame Derby Dolls made the fortuitious discovery of nearby Carlisle’s Border City Rollers, who are newly founded this year. The two leagues have quickly become quite attached, as Doonhame noted: “We only recently discovered that Carlisle had a team on the go through Facebook, one of our girls is from the area and she never even knew haha! This is now the closest team to us! We got in touch and done our own first ever guest coaching with 3 of our girls travelling down to their training night and they couldn’t have been more welcoming, they’re a great bunch of guys as we expected and they were so pleased to learn and understand where to go from where they’d got to. Georgie and Chloe Holmes helped start is up and have done well starting from scratch. We have kept in touch and they have been along to support us at games in Newcastle and Glasgow, making wee banners and being total fangirls which is amazing (it’s usually us fangirling others!). “