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Club History

A Brief History of the Club


Horsham Rugby Club was founded 89 years ago in 1928 by E.J. Hodgson, Bainbridge Copnall and A.G. Puttock during an auspicious meeting in the Station Hotel, which still stands today and forms part of the Beefeater Chain. At the time, the fixture list consisted of a mere twelve matches. Today it totals over thirty.


For the first couple of years, the team played on some farmland near the old Warnham Park gates on the London Road. In 1930 the team moved to Horsham Cricket Club where they played until 1968. After the Second World War, the numbers of players steadily grew, and additional pitches were rented in Horsham Park. From 1968 there was a period of nomadic existence until the new ground at Coolhurst, off Hammerpond Road, was ready to house the club in 1972. This scenic ground remains its home today, set in twenty-seven acres of outstanding natural beauty.


Horsham Goes Global - entertaining the visitors from afar


During the 1950's and 1960's the regular Easter visitor was the Seven Sisters club from Wales. Horsham has also played host to the American Mill Creek Valley Rugby Football Club, the state side, Transkei, from South Africa in 1984, and Elmavali Rugby Football Club from Tblisi in Georgia, USSR in 1990.


In 1974 Horsham entertained St. Maixent from western France and exchange tours at all levels continued until 1990. The relationship was rekindled in 2014 when the Colt's made an Easter tour to France, and then Horsham Colt's played host in 2015.



Mini Rugby - only the beginning


Horsham Rugby Union Football Club started up Mini-Rugby in 1976 with 150 boys and girls aged between 7 and 12 years. It proved to be so successful that 2 years later a tour to the West Country and a Festival of Mini-Rugby were introduced. These events continue to form an integral part of Horsham's busy season and many of the Mini-Rugby squad go on to become key players at all levels.

Current and recent England internationals Billy Twelvetrees and Joe Launchbury both played for many years in Horsham's Minis and Juniors and the club are proud to have played a small part in their development.



The Present Day HRUFC


Horsham RUFC currently has 400 playing members ranging from Under 7 to three Senior (adult) teams. The 2017-18 season sees the 1st XV team play in London South East 2, the Lions 2nd XV play in the Sussex Reserve Team league and the 3rd XV play in Sussex 3. This season Nick Stocker continues as head coach assisted by Richard Bell, Adam Halsey and Johnny Porter. Tom Johnson is the 1st XV Captain, Matt Stone is the Lions Captain and Michael Fisher is the Club Captain.


In 2006 the club's Development Committee raised the funds and provided a new pitch which has provided much needed additional playing space to allow the growing Mini and Junior teams to play and train, as well as the Senior sides.

In 2011 the clubhouse roof was replaced, extending the life of the building, in 2012 the inside of the clubhouse received a major refurbishment, in 2013 a new kitchen was built and in 2014 a new decking and patio area was added.

A new four Changing Room block will be ready for completion in August 2017, as the first stage before converting the existing changing rooms into social space and improving the interior and exterior of the clubhouse. The Club are committed to continuing to work with their current sponsors and continue to look for new sponsors to support this potential development.

The club is delighted to have been chosen by the RFU as the only recipient of a new 4G pitch in Sussex, Surrey and Kent. Planning permission has been granted with installation set for the summer of 2017.



Honours

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1971Sussex Knockout Trophy Runners-up
1989Sussex Knockout Trophy Runners-up
1992Sussex Knockout Trophy Winners
1993London South East Division 3 Champions
1994Sussex Knockout Trophy Winners
2005Sussex League 1 Champions
Sussex Shield Winners
2006Sussex Vase Winners
Sussex Bowl finalists
20071st XV promoted to London SE 4
2013Lions - Sussex League 2 West Champions
20141st XV - Bob Rogers Sussex Cup Winners
3rd XV - Sussex League 3 Champions
20151st XV - London League 3 South East Champions
1st XV - Bob Rogers Sussex Cup Winners
20161st XV - Bob Rogers Sussex Cup Winners
20171st XV - Bob Rogers Sussex Cup Winners

Affiliations

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