Jets Volleyball Club was founded in May 1978, when three newly graduated students from Dunfermline College of Physical Education founded a ladies volleyball team. On gaining access to the Lasswade Sports Centre for training, they adopted the name of Lasswade Volleyball Club. In October of the same year, the Club entered the National League Division Two East, with the aim of gaining promotion to Division One.
A district men’s team was started soon after, this being an amalgam of PE students and Lasswade High School pupils. By October 1979, this team had entered into the National Leagues at Division Three East.
By the End of the 1979-80 season, the women’s team gained promotion to Division One. In order to provide emphasis to the growing Club structure, an executive committee was formed who elected Mr Kevin Sewell ( now an honorary life member of Jets) as the first Chairperson of Laswade Volleyball Club.
In 1980, the team having gained players and experience, entered and won local tournaments. Castlebrae High school was now used for training and matches, Lasswade having become too small for the burgeoning membership of the Club. With this change, it was decided to change the name of the club to Jets, after the distinctive black strip worn at that time.
By now, sufficient members existed to form both a second men and ladies team. The first of several sponsorship deals were signed with a local sportswear shop, who provided kit to both the men and women’s first teams.
The following season saw the men’s team gain promotion to the National League Division Two East and the second men’s team entered into the National League Division Three.
Stability ensued for the next three of four seasons in terms of both membership and status within the National Leagues, at the end of which, a third men and women’s team were formed.
Jets were now one of the biggest volleyball clubs in the United Kingdom. Players were now being selected at international level. It was decided to look for a major sponsor. Again a sportswear shop was targeted and invited to provide all the teams with both paying kit and financial assistance. This enabled the Club to continue to grow and produce players. However, the top teams within the club lacked the experience to enable them to win major titles.
In 1992, Jets Men signed three experienced Scottish internationalists. At the same time, the youth policy had started to mature some talented young women players. The highest level of coaching was provided by an ex Chinese internationalist for the men’s team and by an ex Scottish internationalist for the women. Unfortunately, the sponsor decided to withdraw. Rucanor Sporting Goods entered the picture. The era of Rucanor Jets had begun.
In this period the Club has consolidated it’s membership base at two men and two women’s teams, each team providing success at their own level. The women’s first team had become a dominant force winning two Scottish League titles and four Scottish Cups. The Men’s first team has finished runner’s up twice and competed in six Scottish Cup Finals. Success had also been provided by the Men’s second team winning their respective division and by the women’s second team finishing runner up in 1999.
In 1998, the Club membership decided to relocate to East Lothian. Based at Meadowmill Sports Centre, the Club was fortunate to link up with a dynamic, forward thinking local authority who were dedicated to the development of volleyball. However, with the slightly more remote location, the club struggled to maintain its membership numbers, despite the additional influx from the junior program and the club size diminished substantially.
In recent years, the club has relocated back to Edinburgh and, in great part thanks to the tireless efforts and endless enthusiasm of Nisbet Duffin, has started to grow at an astounding rate again. The club now fields three men’s and two women’s national league teams as well as a recreational team that has competed in district leagues. Recent cup wins for the women’s (Top Teams Cup 2011) and men’s teams (Thistle Bowl 2010). Furthermore, the club worked with a youth development program in conjunction with Edinburgh City Council and Drummond High School. Jets Volleyball Club also hosts part of the Scottish Beach Tour and a number of annual pre-season tournaments. Jets Volleyball Club is now one of the biggest Volleyball Clubs in Scotland and with the rapid expansion of the junior section, the future certainly looks bright for Jets.