Millie’s passion for rugby started when she was 12 years old, after joining Assistant Director of Sport Nicola Charsley’s girls’ rugby sessions. Rugby had been introduced into the girls PE curriculum as part of the ‘Invasion Games’ block and, as many of the girls had shown a keen interest for it, Miss Charsley started the girls’ after school rugby club.
As Millie started developing a greater interest in the game she joined local club Long Eaton RFC (LERFC). After speaking with her club coach about girls’ rugby at Trent College, Miss Charsley’s after school club was invited to LERFC to attend a joint training session.
The following year, as Millie went into Year 9, it was only her second season playing rugby and she became captain of the LERFC U15s.
In Year 11, she was offered the opportunity to play for the school’s boys’ team, she commented: “I take great pride in that, it shows women can do anything! I was supported at my first boys match by some of my club rugby team. It meant so much to have the support of my rugby family.”
At the beginning of this year’s season, Millie was proud to have been selected in the LERFC ladies’ 1st team starting line-up, for their match against Cannock. “We were in a new league, after being undefeated all previous season. We remained unbeaten with a score of 43-17 on that weekend”. After the game Millie was nominated ‘man of the match’ for player’s player. At 17, she is one of the youngest players to ever play with the ladies, so it is a fantastic achievement to have been selected for the ladies’ 1st team.
“It is with thanks to Miss Charsley’s passion for girls in sport that I got to this stage and was selected for the LERFC ladies’ 1st team, and I want to thank her. I have had the best time of my life playing rugby.”
Miss Charsley said: “I feel it is important to offer the girls an opportunity to try out new sports or sports they may not have access to and to provide them with a comfortable environment to have a go.”
When you visit the Trent College PE Department, it is obvious that girls in sport is celebrated. There are colourful displays of women participating in national and international tournaments at the highest level, the sporting interests of female staff are displayed together with a variety of inspirational women in sport. Miss Charsley said: “Many people view certain sports in a particular way and as PE teachers we must provide an opportunity to explore different activities and provide a range of opportunities and challenge stereotypes. It makes me extremely proud that Millie has gone on to be part of a sports club. For me a sports club can be like a second family.”
Millie left Trent College in 2021 following her GCSEs, to study A Levels in Maths, Physics and Electronic Engineering, as well as an EPQ (Extended Project Qualification), at sixth form college. She will sit her A level exams next summer and hopes to go on to university to study a degree in Electronic Engineering. Millie has her career aspirations set on joining the RAF, an interest that was sparked when she joined the Trent College CCF.
“My greater aspiration is to play rugby for the RAFRU. The prospect of combining my passion for rugby with a job I know I will love, is so exciting.”