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PREMIERSHIP Rugby has been handed £600,000 to get more women, girls and people from ethnic minorities involved in the sport – and provide better access for disabled fans.

According to Sporting Equals, an independent body that promotes ethnic diversity in sport, 11% of those who currently take part are from non-white backgrounds.

Chris Holmes, disability commissioner at the Equality and Human Rights Commission, who are providing the funding, said:

“Rubgy is a fantastic way of bringing people together whatever their backgrounds, developing skills and providing great health benefits. Everyone should have the same opportunity to get involved in the game regardless of their ability, gender or social background.

“We look forward to working with Premiership Rugby to build on the inspirational power of the Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games and harness the major investment promised in the bids to grow rugby across diverse communities and get more people involved as participants and coaches.”