Bunting, banners and balls: How Rugby will be celebrating 200 years of the sport of rugby

Councillors backed a plan to spend £52,000 on a series of events
Rugby SchoolRugby School
Rugby School

Bunting, banners and balls are on Rugby Borough Council’s shopping list as it looks to celebrate the bicentenary of rugby next year.

Councillors backed a plan to spend £52,000 on a series of events and marketing opportunities at their latest full council meeting [Dec 14] which would also coincide with a timetable drawn up by Rugby School where the game was born. These include various tournaments and an attempt to create the world’s largest scrum.

Around £35,000 of the council’s cash will go towards dressing the town with buntings, banners and flags with rugby equipment to promote the game in schools and the community costing a further £9,000. The remainder will go towards a series of council-organised events in the town.

Speaking at the full council meeting, leader Cllr Seb Lowe (Con, Coton and Boughton) said: “The bicentenary of the sport of rugby is an enormous milestone in the history of our town and whether people are fans of the sport that bears the name of the town or not, clearly it forms an enormous part of our heritage and history.

“It is therefore entirely appropriate that we look to commemorate this event in a wide and inclusive manner and so it gives me great pleasure to move this report that suggests that we do so.”

The proposal was given full council support and Cllr Tim Douglas (Lib Dem, Paddox) said: “I welcome the measures set out in the report which focuses on schools, young people and our local clubs which is vitally important. I hope it forms a catalyst for regular activity and that we are not waiting another 100 years for the leader of the council to say that he is a rugby fan.

“We have a global brand and I think we should be doing more to create Rugby as a real tourism town.

“We also have the rugby union world cup [in 2023] so perhaps we could extend an invitation to the winners of that tournament when they are perhaps touring the UK as many do in the Autumn, to get them into our local clubs and schools.”

Cllr Lowe confirmed that the council would issue such an invitation.

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