In the lead up to the Rugby World Cup 2015 and on assignment for Dagens Nyheter we visited Rugby School in Warwickshire known as the birthplace of Rugby after the celebrated incident when William Webb Ellis first decided to pick up a football and run.
A huge number of Rugby fans will be making their pilgrmage to the birthplace of the game and for this the school has created two World Cup Tours and these will run from 6th July to 1st November 2015 – we went on one of these tours that lasted around an hour.
It was an interesting tour, one of the exhibits showed the original manuscript showing the first written rules of Rugby Football devised and written by the boys in 1845.
A couple of interesting facts I picked up was that even though they developed the game ’Rugby Football’ Rugby is still called Football in Rugby, confusing? – also that there are only 3 teams in England are permitted to wear an all-white strip: England, Rugby School & the local team Rugby Lions.
After the tour we visited the Rugby Football Museum (entrance through the Webb Ellis shop) which lies opposite to the imposing statue of Webb Ellis outside the Rugby School entrance. The museum houses a rich collection of international rugby memorabilia, it is housed in the original building where James Gilbert, boot and shoemaker, made the first rugby footballs in 1842.
Our final visit was to the the Ruby Lions where Assistant Secretary and former rugby player Geoff Buck kindly showed us around the club and grounds.