Rugby clubs

North Herts Crusaders Get Rugby League into Local Schools In Hertfordshire

Hitchin Boys School In the North Herts Crusaders Emerging Colleges Tournament

Hitchin Boys School In the North Herts Crusaders Emerging Colleges Tournament

The North Herts Crusaders under the guidance of Head coach Colin Baker along with the help of coaches Daniel Bendon and Robin French have been busy getting schools interested in rugby league with the aim of organising a emerging colleges tournament. The Crusaders coaches have been busy going around schools introducing players the greatest game.

Myself, being a founder of the North Herts Crusaders could have only dreamed of the success we have had in the last 2 years since our inception. In year one we ran 2 teams on a number of occasions and in  year 2 we had a huge number of players join us in the newly formed under 16s age group in addition to our 2 senior teams. Now on the cusp of our 3rd season we will be adding another junior team of which both will be playing in the London Junior Leagues. The teams will be under 17s and under 15s.

With the success of the schools coaching and the emerging colleges tournament we have every the new Crusaders Junior teams have every reason to be optimistic for the 2014.

Finalists Hitchin Boys School and Leventhorpe College

Finalists Hitchin Boys School and Leventhorpe College

On a sunny Wednesday afternoon we welcome four local schools down to Legends lane to take part in the emerging colleges tournament of which the winning team will go onto a regional colleges competition on 12th February.
The following teams bought players to take part in what turned out to be a hotly contested tournament with some real talent in all the teams on show.

1. Leventhorpe College (Sawbridgeworth)

2. Hitchin Boys School (Hitchin)

3. Samuel Whitbread (Shefford)

4. Knights Templar (Baldock)


Hitchin Boys 4-26 Leventhorpe

Hitchin Boys 22-0 Samuel Whitbread

Knights Templar 16-4 Samuel Whitbread

Leventhorpe 26-0 Knights Templar

Knights Templar 0-30 Hitchin Boys

With these results this left Leventhorpe and Hitchin Boys to contest the final. Throughout the day all the teams got the hang of what is a new game for them and none more so than Hitchin Boys. It was expected that Hitchin Boys would looking to exact revenge for their earlier defeat and we will see a close game that will go to the wire and that is what we got.

Leventhorpe College 6-4 Hitchin Boys



With just a conversion separating the teams it was a fitting end to a great day of rugby league and it was Leventhorpe that qualify and go through to the regional colleges finals on 12th February.

What we saw from all teams was a lot of raw talent that really enjoyed their day of playing rugby league of which many were playing their first ever game. This indeed bodes well for the future of the game within North Herts and the surrounding areas as we hope that they will come and play some rugby league during the summer.

With this successful tournament behind us we can look forward to the season ahead and particularly our two junior teams the Under 15s and Under 17s age groups of which many of the players on show today will be involved.

The Crusaders Junior preseason training will be on Saturday mornings and will begin on Saturday 1st February. Both teams will be entered into the London Junior leagues.

So tell your friends and lets get more people playing the greatest game. We are also looking for open age players of all abilities. Come and join a thriving sports club.


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - January 25, 2014 at 22:33

Categories: Rugby clubs, Rugby League, Tournaments   Tags:

Rugby League growing Down South & North Herts Crusaders RLFC Plans For 2014




I don’t know about you but I have definitely been inspired by the greatest rugby league world cup ever, as have we all at the Crusaders. With the news that London Broncos will be moving just up the road to Barnet FC is great news for us and will make the possibility for some of our talented players to have a visible pathway into Super League Rugby.

These facts combined with Hemel Stags, who are a Semi Pro Championship 1 club, on our doorstep in Hemel Hempstead, paints a very rosy picture for the future of Rugby League in Hertfordshire where numerous pathways exist for playing the game professionally and we definitely have a few players that could make this leap. We at the Crusaders will always push our players to fulfill their full potential and gain representational honours, again of which there are many.

We have also been working very hard behind the scenes not only strengthening the infrastructure and teams we currently have in place but also to increase the player base in both senior and junior sections of the club with the introduction of another junior team. This season we will be running under 17s and under 15s double aged groups.

Open Age Rugby League For 2014

2014 will see the Crusaders defend the East of England Championship. With 2 back to back grand final wins and a cup win the Crusaders are the team to beat and this coming season the other teams in the league will be looking to steal our crown and will no doubt be lifting their games against us, so there is no room for complacency.

This year we have a new team that joins the East Premier and that is Southend Spartans who are a well run club and will be a strong addition to the league and a somewhat unknown quantity but will definitely be a force to be reckoned with.

The league will look like this

North Herts Crusaders
St Ives Roosters
Bedford Tigers
MK Wolves
Kings Lynn Black Knights
Southend Spartans

We will also be looking to increase player numbers and have more fixtures for the Knights (2nd team) and will be looking to attack the entry league also this season. So bring your friends down this spring and enjoy the great club atmosphere in the sunshine.


Junior Rugby League For 2014

Exciting Plans Ahead For North Herts Crusaders Season 2014

North Herts Crusaders under 16s 2013

Due to the success of the under 16s last year and the interest shown from younger players to play the greatest game we will be adding an addition Junior team this year. Due to changes in the structure of junior league we will be running the following double age groups.

Coach: Robin French
Under 15s (including under 14s)

Coach Dan Bendon
Under 17s (Including under 16s)

These junior teams will be entered in the London Junior leagues.

Junior training will be on Saturday mornings and will commence on Saturday 1st February 2014.

Feedback from the under 16s playing rugby league last summer, with many going onto being selected for the London Origins squads, is very positive. This year we are hoping to have more players selected for not only the Origins but other representational rugby league opportunities, of which there are many. We as a club are very keen to push players for these honours.

As you can see rugby league is growing down south and I like to think that as a club the North Herts Crusaders are playing their part in introducing the greatest game to a new audience and thus growing the game down south.

I would welcome your thoughts on how you think that clubs like ours can make a real difference down south.




1 comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - January 9, 2014 at 14:14

Categories: Rugby clubs, Rugby League   Tags:

How to Get More Members for Your Sports Club Using Social Media

North Herts Crusaders RLFC

North Herts Crusaders RLFC

Living in Hertfordshire and from a family where rugby union is the main rugby code, it is maybe a surprise that the author is a total convert to the “Greatest Game” of Rugby League. Indeed this is largely due to myself beinginvolved in the creation of the North Herts Crusaders. The Crusaders though only 2 years old have won 2 grand finals and the newly created East of England cup in their short history.


In our first year the plan was to get a team out every week but we exceeded that by putting 2 teams out on a number of occasions. In year two we again put out two senior teams and we also started out first ever youth team, the under 16s. Though the under 16s did not get entered into a league, they did however play established opponents and went unbeaten all season until their last game away to Coventry Bears which was the only loss for the young Crusaders. We also had eight players from our under 16s team who went on to being selected for the London Origins squads.


By any standards this has been a successful first two years for the Crusaders. How did we do it? We have been extremely lucky in attracting a top coach in Colin Baker, however how did we get so much interest in our club. Well that was my job to get as much publicity for our club and we somehow needed to make a much more effort in my view than a established club and indeed an established sport. Before the club was even started I created a Twitter account and quickly gained hundreds then thousand of followers with the last count being 6590 followers, which is almost as much as a SuperLeague club. In addition to this the Crusaders Facebook page also has well over 200 Likes. Our website is almost always in the top 50 rugby league websites on Pitchero.


However its not just the social media we are relying on, I also ensure that we are given lots of publicity in the local papers as this is where you will be letting the locals know that your club has arrived and to keep them informed. I have also been successful in getting us in national rugby league publications such as League Express, Forty Twenty Magazine and Rugby Club Magazine. I meet lots of people and its always pleasing to hear how the Crusaders are doing from others.


In this day and age Social media is very important for promoting your club and getting more people involved in your clubs. Its a great way to engage with potential players, volunteers and sponsors as in this day and age the young people are all on twitter, Facebook and many other social media sites and these are the people that we need to engage. In addition you should be getting press releases out in the local newspapers, with all clubs there is always a story that  can be interesting whether its your club or members of your club that are the topic.

North Herts Crusaders Win The East Of England Championship

Rugby League in Hertfordshire


The above combined with being friendly and welcoming on both training and match nights, something i have written about before, Please see HERE,


So if you are in need of getting more people involved in your club in whatever capacity, then there is always something that you can do. I give you a few here as i believe in the future social media is becoming more and more important. However this does not mean that you do not use more traditional advertising like flyers or newspaper adverts. Try and do a bit of everything but ignore Social Media at your peril.





1 comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - October 31, 2013 at 20:12

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby clubs, Rugby League   Tags:

North Herts Crusaders Rugby League Club Go From Strength To Strength

Spen Allison Presents Man Of Steel shield To Kyle Hughes

Spen Allison Presents Man Of Steel shield To Kyle Hughes of the North herts Crusaders

I am sorry for the lack of posts however i have been busy helping build a sustainable rugby league team in the south of England. Its been a great buzz and have really enjoyed getting the word out and trying to convert players to a game that i have grown to love. This last week we had our second ever awards evening and had the pleasure of the company of Spen Allison and Ikram Butt legends in the rugby league world, a world we are learning about and are loving it.

The much anticipated end of season Dinner and presentation evening was a sell out with over 72 guests that included players, partners, parents, sponsors and friends that have all contributed to the success story of the Crusaders. The venue was The Orange Tree In Baldock, who are also a club sponsor and along with Greene King kindly sponsored the food for the evening which was delicious.We had great honour of having as our guests for the evening Ikram Butt and Spen Allison. Ikram is and ex professional rugby league player having played at representative level for England, and at club level for Featherstone Rovers, Leeds Rhinos, Huddersfield Giants, and London Broncos, as a Wing. Ikram Butt was the first south Asian to play either code of international rugby for England in 1995.

Spen Allison as the second of our special guests. Spen Allison is a living legend within rugby league circles having been the long serving Chairman of the British Amateur Rugby League Association (BARLA) and now still involved as the Senior Vice Chairman of BARLA. Spen has been on the BARLA management committee since 1958 which is just over 55 voluntary management years to British Amateur Rugby League a great achievement and a great commitment to the greatest game.

The Crusaders had a lot to celebrate this year with the open age team going the league season unbeaten and winning both the East Cup and East Grand finals and making it to the quarter finals of the National Harry Jepson Cup. In the national cup we suffered our first defeat of the season at the hands of the eventual winners of the Harry Jepson Cup South London Chargers.

It was not all about the open age section as this year was the inaugural season for the newly formed under 16s team which shocked the Eastern Rhinos team in their first ever game and indeed when on to win all but one game this season. In addition to this we also had 7 under 16s players gaining representational honours playing in the London Origins where the best of north and south of the river Thames battle it out in a three game series.

Ikram Butt Presents Awards To Under 16s Players Player Of The Year

Ikram Butt Presents Awards To Under 16s Players Player Of The Year

First up for the rewards was the under 16s our special guest Ikram Butt was to give out the awards.

The Under 16s winners

Players Player Of The Year: Simon Taylor

Coaches Player of the year: Ruiri Shanahan

Top Gun Award: Charlie Parkhouse

Graduation Awards

Graduation awards are given to those players that break through from junior rugby to the open age team and we had 2 players that stepped up and performed admirabley in possibly our toughest game in the quarter final of the Harry Jepson Cup the two graduates this year were:

Charlie Parkhouse

Lewis Copsey


Open Age Winners

Players Player Of The Year: Evan Griffiths

Coaches Player of the year: Alex Nolan

Man Of Steel: Kyle Hughes

It was a tough decision to pick just three winners from each age group as there were many worthy winners. A huge well done and thanks for a great season.

We also like to reward volunteers that go the extra mile to help the club function and thus a special award which recognised the hard work and commitment throughout the season.

Crusader Of The Year: Anne Peterson

This wraps up the second season for the Crusaders which has seen great growth and ultimately success on and off the pitch. Thank you everyone that contributed in whatever way no matter how small as its with the involvement of great people that we can grow and continue to thrive as a club in North Hertfordshire.


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - October 4, 2013 at 11:27

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North Herts Crusaders Rugby League Club, East Of England Champions, Plan For 2013

North Herts Crusaders a rugby league club based in Letchworth Garden City, Hertfordshire have had an amazing first season they managed to get to the East of England play off finals and indeed beat St Ives Roosters 63-30 which is quite impressive for a club in there first season. As you know the author has been involved with this enterprise since it was merely a thought in my mind and seeing this success has been amazing.

North Herts Crusaders Win The East Of England Championship

Rugby League in Hertfordshire

With this success we are not resting on our laurels we know that the club needs a lot of hard work to make us a great club and hopefully make us a club that goes places.


We have been working very hard behind the scenes to make season 2013 even better than the first. Next season we plan to run two open age teams every week with North Herts Crusader ‘A’ team playing in the London & South East Entry League. In addition we have great pleasure in announcing that we will also be establishing a under 16s junior team. Players in the age range 13 to 16 years of age that want to play rugby league next summer then please get in contact. The under 16s will have the opportunity to play other local teams.

The advantages for getting involved in rugby league and playing during the summer are immense. Not only do you get to keep fit during the summer but the demands of the game and the skills gained can and will help your all round rugby football skills as has been demonstared by some of our players, who are clearly better rugby union players as a result of playing league.

We at the Crusaders are very lucky to have former Harlequins RL and London Broncos player performance coach Colin Baker as our head coach. Colin has recently been awarded the prestigious London and the South East Regional Open Age Men’s Coach of the Year award. He will not only be coaching the senior teams but he will be assisting with the junior coaching also. We will be enrolling two of our senior players on Level 2 rugby league coaching courses who will then be able to assist Colin with both the Junior set up and open age team coaching.

North Herts Crusaders Against Kings Lynn Black Knights

North Herts Crusaders Against Kings Lynn Black Knights

This will As you can see the North Herts Crusaders is an exciting place to be right now and we hope to see more of you next summer and hopefully we can make the Cruaders grow even more. Pre-season starts in March/April.

Watch out for further announcements on this website HERE and please don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page.

Follow us on Twitter by clicking HERE

Like our Facebook page by clicking HERE

1 comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - November 22, 2012 at 20:41

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby League   Tags:

Wheelchair Rugby League And The Mighty Bury Jigsaw WRL

Bury Jigsaw Wheelchair Rugby League Club

Bury Jigsaw Wheelchair Rugby League Club

Developed in France back in 2000, Wheelchair Rugby League was introduced to our shores back in 2005.
The game is quite unique in that it offers both disabled and non-disabled players the opportunity to compete both with and against each other.
No matter what gender or age all players compete on level playing field which is created by the use of wheelchairs and some slight adaptions of the rules of Rugby League.
A brief overview of the game includes:


  • There are five players on each side
  • The object of the game is to score tries
  • Conversions are scored by punching the ball over the mini-posts from a tee
  • Tackles are made in the same way as Tag Rugby by pulling off the attached tag
  • Five tackles are followed by the handing over of possession
  • Offside, knock-on and in-touch apply just like in the full version of the game


Wheelchair rugby league is an all inclusive sport which allows disabled and non-disabled players to play at the elite level of club and international competition ,the only wheelchair sport that allows this. The wheelchair rugby league world cup corresponds with the running rugby league world cup year and England are current champions, winning the competion in 2009.


Bury Jigsaw WRL was formed in 2009 after the world cup success and funding from a local charity called Jigsaw, which specialises in helping disabled people lead healthy lifestyles by participating in sport and physical activity. Paul McCormick, who works for Jigsaw and is a wheelchair rugby league World Cup winner with England, took the helm as coach.


Since formation Bury Jigsaw WRL  have played in the top tier of Wheelchair rugby league starting off slowly but eventually progressing into 2011 National champions, beating Halifax in the Grand Final 56-47. From this success they have acquired enough players to enter two teams into the league, one remaining in the Premier League (1st tier) and the other being entered at Championship level (2nd tier).


In their current squad of players Bury Jigsaw WRL  have the England coach, Captain and three Senior england internationals with two england development team players and the Scotland captain and a senior Scottish international player, although many players within the club are pushing for call ups for their respective countries.


Bury Jigsaw WRL  are at the midpoint in our current season with both Premierleague and championship sides in contention for their respective leagues.


As with any club Bury Jigsaw WRL  are always on the look out for volunteers that would like to help out at the club, sponsorship or people interested in playing the sport whether they be disabled or non-disabled.Rugby and sports and a sport that both abled bodied and disabled can play together on a equal footing. From my perspective it sounds like a lot of fun and a great way to get more people playing and being members of your club.


I would sincerely like to Thank Jack Heggie for this brief introduction to the sport and to to Bury Jigsaw WRL.


To find out more about the sport, or to give it a Try, please email Paul McCormick at and/or phone him on 0161 253 6308

You can also follow them on twitter @BuryJigsawWRL



Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - July 12, 2012 at 22:07

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby clubs, Rugby League   Tags: ,

The Making Of North Herts Crusaders Rugby League Club In Hertfordshire

 North Herts Crusaders Rugby League Football Club was formed in Letchworth Garden City in Hertfordshire which is not exactly a hot bed of rugby league. The area has many rugby union clubs the like of Letchworth rugby union club itself, Stevenage Town , Hitchin, Royston and Datchworth Rugby Union Clubs, there was no rugby league side in the area. Rugby League generally being played in the summer months means there is no crossover so players can play both codes.

North Herts Crusaders RLFC

North Herts Crusaders RLFC

St Albans had a well established club The St Albans Centurions founded in 1996 and Hemel Hempstead has the Hemel Stags who have been around since the 1981 and till now these are the only clubs in the Hertfordshire area. Now there is a new kid on the block, North Herts Crusaders.

North Herts Crusaders RLFC was founded by Mick Johal, James Tirrell, Liam Corcoran and Robin French. The story was that James Tirrell who had made his name in rugby union representing Saracens, England under 20s and England 7s teams and now the Rugby development officer for Letchworth Garden City Rugby Union Club, was looking for ways to further increase participation in sports in North Herts. James suggested the idea to Mick Johal who instantly thought this is a great idea for giving players a way to keep fit and sharp during the summer period and he ran with the idea. Liam Corcoran and Robin  French had a avid interest in rugby league and had often spoke about starting a team and thus were recruited onto the committee and a plan of action was put in place. North Herts Crusaders is a completely independent rugby league club with its own membership and sponsorships.

This was all going on in February 2012 and a meeting was arranged with The RFL and The North Herts Crusaders Rugby League Football Club was born with Letchworth Rugby Club as its home ground. The Crusaders were placed in the East Regional League – East along with St Ives Roosters, Bury Titans, Kings Lynn Black Knights, Bedford Tigers and Milton Keynes Wolves.

North Herts Crusaders First Ever Team against Bedford Tigers

North Herts Crusaders First Ever Team against Bedford Tigers

The Crusaders are now over half way through their league campaign, having shocked Bedford Tigers in there first ever game defeating them at their home 22-26. As of 7th July 2012 we have played 7 first team games and won 5 of them. In addition hey have fielded a second team on a number of occasions with their first ever game against Weald Warriors and running out winners by 84-30. Its looking very good for their first season.

North Herts Crusaders has been a huge success story they have registered over 50 players and have recruited a top coach in Colin Baker who comes with a lot of experience previously being a coach at Harlequins RL and London Broncos.

There is now plans to extend the membership by setting up junior teams so that  a pipeline that feeds into open age rugby league with players that already know the game. The Crusaders are very lucky to have the support of Letchworth Rugby Union Club who are one of the areas top clubs with a huge number of players, which gives the crusaders access to a talented pool of players, who want to play rugby through the summer months. The membership of the Crusaders is not solely based on Letchworth Rugby Club however,  they have registered players from a number of local rugby clubs with a split of around 50% letchworth and 50 % non Letchworth based players with players from rugby union clubs across Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire.

North Herts Crusaders V St Ives Roosters

North Herts Crusaders V St Ives Roosters

The advantages to Letchworth Rugby Club are numerous but primarily the clubhouse will be in  use all year round with added revenue to the bar and bringing new people to use the facilities who otherwise would never have done so. The advantage for the players is that they have been keeping fit and sharp in readiness for the Rugby Union season to start. This has the added benefit of having players that are match fit at preseason.

Players from different clubs are forging new friendships with players from different clubs and indeed from different sports as a number of their players are footballers who wanted to play competitive sport during the summer, hopefully these players will enjoy it so much they take up rugby league as there first sport.

The phenomenon of The North Herts Crusaders in Letchworth is is set to grow and grow already it has created much interest in both local press and the Rugby Football League itself. North Herts Crusaders have today over 2300 followers on twitter with the likes of Leeds Rhinos following them.

North Herts Crusaders are always looking for new players and coaches so if you want to be involved with Rugby League in Hertfordshire then there is only one club to choose that is the Crusaders. For Further information contact them through their website or email on

2 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - July 9, 2012 at 21:37

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby clubs, Rugby League   Tags:

‘North Herts Crusaders’, A New Rugby League Club In Hertfordshire

Rugby League A Fast And Exciting Sport

Come and play rugby league with the North Herts Crusaders

North Hertfordshire is now firmly on the Rugby League map with the formation of North Herts Crusaders, which will be based out of and sharing the facilities of Letchworth Garden City Rugby Union Club at Legends Land, Baldock Road, Letchworth Garden City SG6 2EN.

North Herts Crusaders was set up during the winter in preparation for their inaugural season in the East Division in the summer of 2012. The teams they will be playing against are listed below.

Bedford Tigers
Bury Titans (Bury St Edmunds)
Kings Lynn Black Knights
Milton Keynes Wolves
North Herts Crusaders (Letchworth Garden City)
St. Ives Roosters

There will also be a National Cup competition which will run alongside the league, which gives the Crusaders a chance of playing some of the top clubs in the country and the possibility of picking up some silverware.

Rugby League club is traditionally played in the North of England however the sport is growing in popularity in the south now too. North Hertfordshire now has its very own Club which should attract fans and players from across the region to play and watch games.

Liam Corcoran the founding Chairman said “In North Hertfordshire we have a number of large Rugby Union clubs and it is hoped we can attract players from across North Hertfordshire and beyond to come and help make North Herts Crusaders a major force in Rugby League”.

“The great thing about running a Rugby League Club is that there is virtually no cross over in terms of seasons dates, Rugby League being played in the summer and Rugby Union in winter. Therefore the two forms of rugby compliment each other perfectly and hopefully build camaraderie and friendships with players from different areas”.

“There was a strong demand for Rugby League club in Hertfordshire and it was felt that it was a great way to keep fit during the summer”.

“The desire for playing Rugby League in the area has been immense and we have already had over 35 players sign a intention to play declaration. We are looking to run more than one team so we are looking to run a 2nd as often as we can. In the future we hope to grow and introduce a ladies team, junior and mini sections”.

“We essentially aim to provide a sport that was previously unavailable in North Hertfordshire and with doing this we hope to attract Senior, Junior, Men and Woman players into playing and training Rugby League through out the summer”.

“We are looking for players at all levels. If you are interested in playing this fast and extremely exciting sport please contact them by emailing them  on or via the contact form on our website by clicking HERE ” or going to

3 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - March 1, 2012 at 14:19

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Following up on my interest in rugby in India and particularly rugby in the Delhi area I am pleased to report that Delhi Hurricanes Rugby Club is going from strength to strength. The people behind the Delhi Hurricanes are working very hard in promiting rugby in Delhi and their latest venture is starting a rugby academy. It is set to become a very fun day and if anyone wants to find out more or wants to get involved then please get yourself there.

Inauguration of Hurricanes Rugby Academy on 31st July, 2011

Inauguration of Hurricanes Rugby Academy on 31st July, 2011

On the behalf of Delhi Hurricanes Rugby Football club, I invite you for the Inauguration of Hurricanes Rugby Academy on 31st July 2011. I sincerely believe that you can make difference to this event I sincerely request you to attend this event & make it huge.

Join Delhi Hurricanes facebook page by clicking here.


4 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - July 25, 2011 at 13:36

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Southwark Rugby Club & the Lancers

A big thank you to Chris Callaway for this contribution, which is a great story of how he and a few friends set up Southwark Rugby Club in London’s inner city Borough of Southwark.
Southwark Rugby Club & the Lancers

Southwark Rugby Club & the Lancers

Looking back it was a strange decision to start playing rugby after 15 years of inactivity but I can honestly say that I have loved every minute of playing again over the past 4 years, I only wish that I had continued to play whilst I was at school. The catalyst to strapping on my boots had been the fact that as a business we wanted to sponsor a rugby team but had no real allegiance to anyone in particular. I decided to watch a local match and immediately knew that I would love to get involved with rugby again.

Not content with just wanting to play again I decided that the team we would sponsor would be one of our own creation. To this day I really cannot accurately describe how or why this decision was made but the club has just finished it’s 3rd full season.

Having contacted the RFU and asked for advice on setting up a club they pointed me in the direction of a junior team in inner city London who had been running for 5 years but had no senior team for the children to progress to. I met Vernon Neve-Dunn (founder of the Southwark Tigers in the unfamiliar surroundings of Burgess Park which is situated just off the Old Kent Road and a million miles away from the leafy surroundings that you would normally associate with rugby. His brilliant vision had been to create a club for children who would otherwise never have come into contact with a rugby ball.

November 2007 saw the very beginnings of the Southwark Lancers, 4 friends throwing around a rugby ball on a cold Saturday morning in Burgess Park, nothing at all inspirational but a start. Friends of friends started to join and some replies to adverts meant that we had a motley crew of players ready for our first season playing in the Kent Metropolitan Merit Leagues. In fact we had managed to put together a useful team, many of whom had been out of the game for a number of years and had been keen to get back into the game. Our attractiveness was our central London location that can be reached in 10 minutes from Elephant & Castle tube.

We were pipped to top spot by Beckenham in our first season but managed to get promotion. At the beginning of our second season we had enough players for two teams, we were also approached by Niall O’Doherty who wanted to get involved with the club and who became our full time coach. We saw an immediate return and the 09/10 season saw us go undefeated and gain promotion mid way through the season.

Season 10/11 witnessed the club entering the proper national league structure and taking their place in Kent 2. We finally started to find our feet after the first couple of matches and strung some good results together ultimately finishing in 4th position.

This coming campaign will see us pressing for promotion but also looking to get our club structure in place. We rent our pitch from the council and at the moment we train once a week, the club has no club house (the excellent local pub is more than sufficient) and manages to field 3 full teams. I have been utterly shocked by the great success of the club and we hope to improve each year. It is a harsh reality that at grass roots level, participation is down and many clubs are folding so I continue to hope that Southwark Rugby Club will continue to buck the trend.

Whether you want to play or not Southwark Rugby Club are always looking for new players and social members. If you want to join a vibrant, friendly and welcoming club in Southwark please contact:

Chris Callaway on 07740419539




5 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - June 9, 2011 at 17:05

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Do You Want To Play Rugby In Delhi India

Hello All I have been encouraged lately about the number of people who have contacted me about playing rugby in Delhi. I seem to have a number of people asking where there is a club and how do they join. I have a contact at Delhi Hurricanes Rugby Club and hence if anyone want to play in Delhi then please use the contact details below.

Delhi Hurricanes rugby club normally train twice a week on Thursdays & Sundays.  For the confirmation of the time, u can call the following people.
Vicky  – 9818440814
Pulkit  – 9873786001

Also for general information regarding the club and sponsorship opportunities or just ways to get involved with the fastest growing sport in india then contact the person below.

President: Mr. Kuldeep Singh Bist (Kally)

Contact Number: 9999353722
Email ID:

You can join their facebook group also on the following link………

31 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - May 12, 2011 at 19:20

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A Day Out at Berliner Rugby Club in Germany

Finally, I have a weekend in Berlin. As is my lifestyle in Berlin, I got up on Saturday morning and I have no work, excellent so i can lay here and snooze for a bit longer. However though I have a fully functioning kitchen i have yet to use any of it due to the great value eating out in this great city. I can rarely afford to sit indoors for very long as I get hungry and have to get out.

During my time In Berlin working I made good friends with an Irish lad from Dublin, who I spent a lot of time with as we were both new to the city. So the clock hit 11.00am and I could go no longer to wait for my morning cup of tea and most importantly breakfast. A quick text to Ian (my new Irish Mate) and I was off on the U-Bahn to meet him at Charlottenberg which incidentally was the capital of West Berlin before unification of East and West Germany.

The plan was to get breakfast and make our way over to watch some Rugby which was not too far from here. We took a walk and ruled out all the possibilities for brunch until we passed an Irish Pub called the Irish Harp In Charlottenberg. We decided to go here as my Friend Ian felt really at home in these places. I ordered a Guinness and asked for the menu.  I was feeling adventurous and decided on a “Irish Breakfast, you can imagine my disappointment when it arrived. Now don’t get me wrong but Sausage, egg, bacon, beans and toast and English tea is pretty much the same as an English breakfast. Irish or English it was a great breakfast and I learned the Irish have the same breakfast as the English therefore it was a Irish/English Breakfast.

After downing two pints of Guinness we decided it was time to leave for the Game. A game between Berlin second team and Hamburg first team.

We arrived at the game on time. There was quite a crown for a second team game I thought and especially for Germany. However the standard of rugby was pretty good and on show were mostly German players however there were a number of British players playing for both teams along with a few Samoans and New Zealanders. The Game was won by Berliner rugby club but the outstanding player on the field that day was the fly half for Hamburg who we later found out was a student on some sort of exchange program from Northern Ireland.

After the game we were invited to have a beer but we declined and headed back to the Irish harp for more beer and food. I now noticed by a poster on the wall of the Berliner Rugby team and later learned that the Irish Harp are in fact sponsors of Berliner Rugby Club. And this is their main watering hole and thus we drank a few more Guinness’s had a chat with a few of the rugby boys who happened to be New Zealanders and off we went. The rest of the night was a blur so can’t report on that.

All in all a rather different rugby day for me but enjoyable and am glad that I can enjoy rugby wherever I go regardless of the standard of rugby it’s just a case of digging around and finding what’s out there are hoping there is a fixture you can attend.

That’s it now for Germany, my 2 months here are done and now back to Rugby in England and looking forward to the Summer touch rugby tournament at Letchworth Rugby Club and Looking forward to Helping out at Little Ruggers a sports development club for children aged 2- 6 years.


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - at 19:13

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Ex-England Players Back O2 Rugby Reunion in Newcastle

An initiative that we at thoroughly approve of is getting more lapsed rugby players playing rugby again. From my experience there are lots of them out there.  If you have been out of Rugby for a while it can drop to the back of the mind and before long rugby is often even considered a possible alternative to going shopping on Saturdays. Sometimes all that is needed is for someone to plant the seed in the mind of these lapsed players and make them realise that a run out on a saturday could be the escape they are looking for. So it is the duty of all rugby club members to plant the seed in as many minds as we can. So everyone get on those phones and start getting those legendary teams back together again and get involved.

As a start join O2 Rugby Reunion this summer and make the comeback to end all comebacks. It’s time to put the old team back together and get back out there. Each event has food, drink, competitions, prizes and England players present.

Along with former England player Mike Catt, Rob Andrew, one of the North East’s favourite rugby sons, is backing Newcastle as the perfect venue for this weekend’s launch of the O2 Rugby Reunion campaign, a nationwide initiative supported by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) to encourage players that have drifted away from rugby to reconnect with the game and their friends.

For more details and to get involved, check out the Rugby Reunion application on Facebook.

“The North East has a great reputation for welcoming visitors and providing them with a tremendous social environment and that should tie in perfectly with the O2 Rugby Reunion theme.” says the former Newcastle Falcons fly-half and Director of Rugby who is now England’s Elite Rugby Director.

“I think the O2 and RFU efforts to keep people in touch and involved in the game is a really good idea and the launch of the programme at Ryton RFC on the outskirts of Newcastle is an ideal choice.

“When any of us look back on our careers, memories of the early days and the characters we played with always remain vivid and precious. Ironically, while the 16/24 age group which this project caters for is probably the most vulnerable, it is also the period in which RU players get most out of the game and the friendships it generates.

Reunite old rugby friends

Reunite old rugby friends

“The touch rugby festivals in the O2 Rugby Reunion programme offer a perfect opportunity for schoolmates to rekindle the rugby spark and the use of facebook as a means of pulling teams together is a smart piece of thinking.

“I’m sure Newcastle, the capital of fun and social interaction for a while now, will ensure that the O2 Rugby Reunion series will get away to a great start.”

Teams have been invited to take part in one or more of a series of touch rugby events across the UK, culminating in a finale event, ‘The Big one’ in London on September 12, but more importantly, the project is aimed at bringing together players and pals who has drifted apart.

Aimed at reigniting players’ passion for rugby, O2 Rugby Reunion not only uses facebook to reconnect players with their old teams, but also offers an enrollment on the day option for teams who want to turn up and play.

A captain can register a team and interest in a specific touch rugby event, send invites to friends and confirm attendance at the event(s) once a minimum of six team members have been recruited. Teams can then opt to take part in either the ‘fun’ or ‘competitive’ category for their local event.

The programme is aimed at the 16/24 age group, where, because of further education and employment issues, it is easy for players to become detached and lose contact with the game and their former teammates.

The RFU has an O2 Pathfinder scheme in place which seeks to provide an aftercare and tracking mechanism once players move from the clubs and schools where they learned the game and O2 Rugby Reunion offers a chance for friends to get together again and have a run out.

Registration on Saturday opens at 10.00am, with the tournament getting underway after a team briefing scheduled for 11.00am. In keeping with the mood of the event, efforts will be made to accommodate all teams and individuals who share in the spirit of the O2 Rugby Reunion, even if their arrival is delayed.

And if Newcastle is out of your parish, why not get the ball rolling now and enter one of the remaining regional events. They are:

London, Old Deer Park – Saturday 31st July
Bristol, Portway Centre – Saturday 7th August
Manchester, Broughton Park RFC – Saturday 14th August
Coventry, Coundon Hall Park – Saturday 21st August
Dorset, Oakmedians RFC – Sunday 29th August
To register a team via facebook simply search online for ‘O2 Rugby Reunion’ – and start getting in touch with your rugby mates from yesteryear.

For further information on the Newcastle event please contact:
Tom Wilkinson on 07894 489096
Dave Reed on 07736 517728

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - July 26, 2010 at 10:53

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Go Play Touch Rugby And Some Touch Rugby Videos

Touch rugby Game in progress

Touch Rugby

Now that the Summer is allegedly here and the Rugby season is over its time to think about keeping active during the summer and keep in shape for the new season. Touch rugby is a fantastic way to keep fit without the contact and anyone can play.

Touch is one of the fastest growing sports in England, played by people of all ages and skill levels. Introduced from the Southern Hemisphere in the 70’s, touch is a fast, evasive, non-contact form of rugby. Touch is one of the few team sports where men and women compete on teams together not only socially but at an international level. There are currently approximately 12,000 people playing touch in organised leagues around the UK.

It’s a non contact version of the game and is thus much simpler to learn and to play as there is no tackling, scrummaging, rucking, mauling, lineouts or kicking. It’s a fun game and is ideal for beginners to get to grips with the basics In fact, it’s a great way to work on your running, handling and dodging skills.

In Australia and New Zealand there are more registered touch players than the 15-a-side game and this trend is set up to be the case in the UK.

A touch rugby tournament hosted by Letchworth Rugby Club in Hertfordshire UK. This annual Summer touch tournament starts Wednesday 2nd June 2010. This is the fourth year of the Letchworth Touch tournament and every year it grows from strength to strength. Most of the teams are made up of members of Letchworth Rugby Club however teams from other clubs and organisations are invited and welcomed. In recent years there has been teams drawn from the RAF, various football teams, teams of parents from the junior and mini sections, Veterans, as well as current players from Letchworth including junior teams older than under 14s and girls sections.

The touch tournament is a fantastic success for Letchworth Rugby Club and the growth and popularity of rugby in general. It enables players, parents, coaches and to socialise and get to know each other and creates a cohesion within the club that otherwise would not be there. It has been known to enticed some to dig out there boots from the loft and start playing again.

In addition to these positives, it also helps the club with takings over the bar, raises the profile of rugby in the local area and most of all it attracts more potential players to the game, which is excellent for the game overall.

This annual touch tournament starts Wednesday 2nd June and of 10 at £100 per team. You will receive free team t-shirts and there will be a big Finals Party with a barbecue and fun for all!

It’s a real family day and families are encouraged to come along and join in.

An excellent idea for any club wanting to increase membership and raise the profile of their club and get more people discovering how fun and great exercise touch rugby is. Perhaps you would like to start a similar tournament over the summer, its a win win situation for any club willing to hold a summer touch rugby tournament. So if you fancy keeping fit and trying out touch rugby get in contact with your local rugby club and see if they have touch rugby during the summer.

A Short video explaining how to play rugby. There are variations to the rules played however the basics of touch rugby are explained here.

A video of some some touch rugby being played in New Zealand. This is the standard we must get up to, well maybe not yet but with more tournaments and touch rugby leagues, maybe we will get there.

Clips from the Dawgsouljahz touch team at the whakatane touch tounament in New Zealand.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - May 31, 2010 at 12:54

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Rugby World Magazine, Are You Their Team of The Year?

RUgby World Magazine

Rugby World

I though that some of you may be interested in this. Rugby World Magazine are running a competition for junior clubs and this includes Europe. So my European friends get writing them emails now, I know as a fact there are many worthy teams out there.

With these things its usually the clubs that that can be bothered to write that win the prizes and the deserving teams never seem to win. Thats because no one takes the time to write. Lets correct this now.

Good Luck

taken from Rugby World magazine.

Are You Our Team of the Year?

It’s time for the big one. If you’ve had a season to remember, email to tell us why you deserve to be the Rugby World Team of the Year. The award is aimed at junior clubs in Europe and the winning team will receive 22 sets of team kit jersey, shorts and socks from Playmore! So email your nomination TODAY.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - April 27, 2010 at 19:49

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How To Increase Club Membership With One Easy Step

Having been to lots of rugby clubs in both UK and Europe, I have found that some clubs are more welcoming and have a better atmosphere than others. What are the ingredients for having a welcoming and friendly club? I will be looking into how you can make a simple change to increase playing, social members and sponsors.

During training nights a number of new players can turn up. This is a critical time for these new players because if they don’t get the right vibe then these players may not come back and some other club will have their services. Therefore it is important that their first impression of your club is a good one. All new players should be greeted and welcomed to the club the moment they arrive. This is not just the job of the club captain or coaches as they may not be around at the time. It is the duty of ALL players and all officials around at the time. Introduce them to the other players prior to commencement of training and then after training have a brief chat with them to ensure they enjoyed themselves and find out a little bit about them and their aspirations, regardless of there ability to pay in the first team.

This is just common sense, I hear you say, however I am surprised the number of players that have ended up at my club having previously trained with another local club, stating a negative experience at training, for example no one spoke to them. They were not made to feel welcome or just did not like the vibe. Any decent rugby club would have retained these players if they had just been more welcoming at training and it should not matter if they are first team potential or whether they are beginners as these guys will go on to be paid up members of the club if treated well. More members are better for the success of all teams and for the clubs coffers.

I visit lots of different rugby clubs around the country, when I am not at my local rugby club on a Saturday. This may be to visit family in another part of the country or on holiday somewhere. I will always pop down the local rugby club and have a couple of beers and watch a game of rugby, much to my wife’s annoyance. I was impressed with a particular club in the Midlands that I recently visited.

What did they do right? I was greeted first as I walked into the bar area by a man in a suit, who later turned out to be the chairman, we shook hands and he welcomed me and mentioned that he had not seen me down there before and I had a brief chat with him about the weather and the likelihood of a win for the home side and I made my way to the bar. Please bear in mind this was a match day there were lots of people about and I could have easily have gone in there and no one spoke to me all day as what has happened on a number of visits to other clubs. The chap behind the bar was very friendly too asking me if I was from the opposition and whether I was new to the area. I explained to him I am visiting the wife’s family and just popped out to watch a game. He called me a top man, always nice to know.

Again after the game I had a beer before I headed back to face the in-laws. During the course of the day the Chairman introduced me to a number of people I honestly felt at home here like I was talking to old friends. I walked away feeling I had made some good friends and most of all a very positive opinion of the club and if I had lived nearby they would definitely had me as a member. As I visit my in-laws from time to time, I have visited a number of clubs in that area and some are not as friendly as this particular club needless to say, I will be going back next time I am in the area, at least they have gained a supporter who knows may take my boots along and get a game with there vets team.

You should always be on the look out for new faces on match days and training and say hello to everyone and at least acknowledge them as I understand it can be a busy. The next new face you see down your club could well be a potential player, member or even a sponsor. Lots of potential players turn up on match days just to check out the vibe of the place and see if it’s a club they would like to play for, it’s important not to let these people leave with a negative view of your club and its important to get them onboard.

ALL club members are ambassadors of the club. There is no passing the buck and saying it’s not your job, it is your job it’s the job of all club members. It is very obvious and a simple concept but it seems some clubs just aren’t good at it and are losing potential players and members. So lets be more welcoming, lets get more players, supporters and sponsors into your rugby club and lets keep them, its as simple as saying “Hello” and a smile and if someone looks lost help them out, unless you are a club close to mine, then keep it up please, we like the steady flow of players from your clubs.

On the whole rugby clubs are in fact very friendly and unique places however unknowingly you can become so caught up in what you are doing and sometimes can overlook this very simple thing. I would welcome comments on this subject and if you have experienced unfriendly clubs let me know what made them unfriendly and why you never stuck around (please don’t name these clubs). If you are a club member then I would like to hear what you do to make your club more welcoming for potential players and members.

5 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - March 29, 2010 at 16:53

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby clubs, World Rugby   Tags:

How a Rugby Club Should be Run?

I came across the following video whilst browsing youtube. It seems to be a promotional video for Havant Rugby Football Club who play in National League 3 South East which is the fifth tier of English rugby. It outlines some of its aims and ambitions for the future. I think that it gives a glimpse of a well run and ambitious rugby club. It shows what exactly a rugby club can offer its players of all age ranges from seven upwards, social members, sponsors and indeed the local community. Though this video is about a particular club, it’s no different to any other club. It shows what I believe to be how all rugby clubs should be run, with all the elements present to make a successful club on and off the pitch. So check it out.

An important issue that is raised in this video is that of paying players. I am not singling out Havant for this discussion, because most teams in the Havant’s league at level 5 will have a mix of paid players and local players and indeed I am sure some will pay all players, it is a sign of the times. I don’t think this is an issue at level 5 and above but in the leagues below it seems some clubs can be reluctant to admit it after all this is where it becomes a amateur game isn’t it?

Some clubs often get promoted with a good batch of players coming up through their youth systems combining with the experienced players in the club. Eventually this team will get as far as it can go with this set of players. Some clubs can even make it into the National leagues. What happens if some players go off to university or simply retire when you can see the club going through free fall through the leagues? I suggest at this point you decide what type of club you want to be as this is a big step for a non paying club as it maybe going against traditions, that’s if money is available or you can find ways of raising more funds though sponsorship deals and such like.

Some clubs will not see the opportunities available to raise more funds to bolster the squads and some clubs will decide that it’s against their principles. Some clubs will look to bolster their squad in a bid to stop a steady decline back down the leagues, this move will probably change the club forever.

If you have a team made up solely of paid players that come to training and game on a Saturday then straight after the game they shoot off to “a dinner party” then this can be detrimental on the rest of the club. Those players that are playing in the lower teams may not get to know any of the first team socially, this can then create cliques in your club with members of these other teams becoming resentful. If you get just a couple of paid players in then this could cause resentment “if they are being paid, why aren’t we?” So what is the answer? Insist these guys stick around after the game for at least a couple of drinks, it helps.

Decide what type of club you want to be. If you want to watch/play a good standard of rugby at level 5 and above, and maintain it, then paid players will be present at some stage in your club. It is important that you take a balanced approach and not let other sections of your club suffer such as the players in the lower teams and youth and mini sections as this is the lifeblood of any successful club.

2 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - March 8, 2010 at 13:39

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby clubs   Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

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