Dagenham Rugby Club celebrated an historic weekend as the 1st XV secured promotion to Regional Two Anglia with a 57-5 victory over Campion and the champion 2nd XV ended their season unbeaten after a 34-19 victory at Millwall.

Second place in Counties One Essex was assured, with Dagenham battling for promotion as one of six best runners-up across the country.

And a bonus-point win over Campion ensured they will play at the highest-ever level (step six) in club history next season.

Dagenham made a fast start, with their pack quickly asserting their dominance, and a series of attacking plays led to full-back Jordan Calverley breaking through the line to score in the right corner.

The try was converted from out wide by Tommy Cameron and good play by the Dagenham backs narrowed the Campion defence for Jermaine Darkwa to put winger Joe Daniels in space to run down the left touchline for a second try.

With Dagenham now in the ascendancy, centre Lewis Pruce broke through midfield and sent a delicate cross-field grubber for Daniels to chase, with the winger outpacing the covering defence to dot down for his second score. 

Dagenham kept applying pressure, knowing the all-important four-try bonus point was in sight, and a trademark bullish carry from back-row Earl Gorman saw him run straight through Campion defenders and show good pace to sprint in from long range. 

The next score came through another break from Calverley, drawing the last defender before passing to hard-working back row Evan Westcott to race in for a well-deserved try. 

And Dagenham ended the half in style, with Darkwa beating several players in the midfield and shrugging off the final tackle to score underneath the posts for a 38-0 lead. 

The second half proved a much tougher battle for the D’s with some ill-discipline and errors halting their momentum. 

But Cameron's deft chip kick was fumbled by the visitors, allowing Calverley to capitalise and collect to score, before Dagenham repelled several Campion attacks on their line.

Cameron once again provided the key in attack, threading a perfect flat pass to put Frankie Neale through a gap to score, but Campion again responded with pressure of their own and were rewarded with a try after a loose ball from a scrum on the Dagenham line. 

The D’s had the last word, though, with centre Pruce busting through the middle to score under the posts before an anxious wait for results elsewhere confirmed their promotion.

"This is a great achievement to take from a challenging season. Congratulations to all of the coaching team, playing group, supporters and volunteers who have made it possible," said a club spokesperson.

Dagenham face a National Cup tie next month, while the seconds have a Merit Table Cup semi-final at Central Park on March 25.