Cotham Park was originally formed in 1901 when it is believed the rugby clubs of Bristol East and Redland Park amalgamated and from then on played as Cotham Park.
The club has played at a number of grounds in its time, including the Downs, Gloucester County Cricket Ground, a field close to where the Fellowship pub is now, grazing fields in Horfield, fields near to Southmead Hospital, Filton combination ground, parish fields at Filton and then finally the purchase and move to our current home at Failand.
During its history Cotham Park has obviously had its share of famous, and infamous, individuals.
Two individuals worthy of mention are a combination from the 1920's. Len Corbett was one of the finest centres that has played for England. He was capped 16 times and even captained his country. Len was accredited with selling the first dummy in the game. His partner at the time was Reg Quick, a speedy winger who represented Bristol and Gloucester. He played for Bristol 260 times and captained them between 1922 and 1924. Reg went on to become president of the club.
Cotham Park has experienced many ups and downs over the years but continues to be forward looking in its approach. The club has produced a development plan that maps out progression in four key areas.
- The development of the premises.
- The development of the senior squads.
- The development of the junior section. This includes links with secondary and primary schools in the area.
- The formation and development of a ladies section.
The club is actively seeking sponsorship and grants to facilitate these plans and the committee is working hard to ensure their success.
To survive for over 100 years is a huge achievement, but the club is not resting on its laurels. It is aware of the difficulties facing it. It is currently working hard to attract new players to the club to provide strength in depth in all teams.
Here's to another 100 years!
A more detailed history of the club is available in a book to mark our centenary, available at the clubhouse.