Stelrad has donated two new specially adapted wheelchairs to the newly renamed North East Barbarians Wheelchair Rugby team.

Running the club costs in the region of £10,000 a year. While all the players pay monthly subscriptions, it is vital that it can raise additional funds from local businesses and get grants from charitable sources in the region to cover costs and keep the club in the black.

The team changed its name from Newcastle Wheelchair Rugby Club to more accurately reflect the club which has players and supporters from Morpeth in the north of the area, and as far south as Hartlepool.

Ex-rugby player Mick Armstrong is the man behind the club and he is delighted with the additional two wheel chairs for the club. He said: “The club is reliant on volunteers to run it, and we welcome any additional fundraising activities that we can benefit from to ensure we have the necessary funds to keep functioning as a team.

“Its gifts like this one from Stelrad that keep things moving and enable us to offer the sport to more individuals who are wheelchair bound in the first place.”

Stelrad’s Head of Marketing, Chris Harvey, added: “It’s a great sport to watch and you quickly realise why the wheelchairs need to be adapted to cope with the robust nature of the game with regular full blooded collisions and no holds barred interceptions.

“We were delighted to be able to help in a small way by providing these two additional wheelchairs for the club. We have built a reputation over the years for supporting local sport up here in the north east and in South Yorkshire, where our manufacturing unit and national distribution centre are based.

“These are strange and challenging times for manufacturing businesses, but we’re pleased to be able to help the club in this way.”

Stelrad also provides support and sponsorship of Newcastle Falcons in the Rugby Premiership.