Club history 1 of 2

1. Club History

Club History

The club was founded in its present form on Monday 21 December 1925 under the chairmanship of AF Carris, who was elected President, with RA "Johnny" Johnson as Secretary. Although there are records showing that Finchley Rugby Club was originated in 1875, this cannot be confirmed as records are rather sketchy.

The first game the club played in its present format was on 26 December 1925 against Barnet Grammar School which the club won 18pts-6pts. Since then this annual fixture was arranged with Barnet Rugby Club until 1996 playing for the Brown Bowler, which resides at Barnet RFC.

The club's home ground in 1925 was Arden Field, now Finchley Cricket Club ground. In 1926-29 two pitches were obtained in Colindale.

The clubs original colours were sky blue and thin black hoops, until 1930 when they changed to a broad Scarlet and Grey hoop, these remained until 1947 when the club adopted its present Scarlet and White hoops.

In 1929 the club moved to its present ground in Summers Lane, in 1931 the 500 seat stand was completed and the changing rooms and clubhouse were housed underneath.

During the period from 1929 to 1939 the club grew and regularly fielded 5 sides.

At the outbreak of war the club closed until 1946, on its re-opening polar trees were planted on the East side of the ground in 1948 to commemorate the loss of club members during the Second World War.

In 1963 the Finchley Colts (U18) section was formed but unfortunately ceased in 1987. During those years many players represented Middlesex Colts with 13 of the 1976-77 side representing the county and also 3 representing England.

On 10 April 1968 the present clubhouse which was funded and built by the members was opened by George Barry MBE, President of Middlesex RFU.
In 1975 the club celebrated its Golden Jubilee with a dinner at the Royal Garden Hotel Kensington and matches played at Summers Lane against Public School Wanderers and an International XV. A rugby ball was run by members of the club from Rugby School to Summers Lane, participants were presented by Carwyn James with a commemorative tie.

The introduction of league rugby in 1987 saw a major upturn in the Club's playing fortunes. In 1988 the club achieved "the double" - winning the Middlesex Cup and gaining promotion from Middlesex 1 to London 3 North league, rising the following year to London 2 North.

Most notable during this period was the Club's progression through the National cup competition, achieving TV coverage after beating Lydney and finally losing to Richmond in the 3 rd round.

In the 1980's the mini/junior section was formed by Garnet Edwards and currently fields 11 sides from age 7 to 17.

In 2000 the club celebrated its 75 th year.

Over the years the Club has produced a number of players who have distinguished themselves at both National and County level, John Blyth (Wales U16 and U19), Barry Bean (England U19), George Bignell ( Wasps and Middlesex), Clint Mc Gregor (Saracens, Augouleme, Middlesex and England "B"), Pat Kamara ( Saracens, Wasps and Middlesex), Dean Mitchell ( Ireland U19).

During the years the club has had a number of notable stalwarts, Charles Matthews, Pat Connolly, Bob West, Dave O'Brien, Garnet Edwards and Carl Elliott who is the only person in the history of the club to have held all the major positions as Club Captain, Hon Secretary, Hon Treasurer and President.

In September 2005 the club was nominated as the RFU inaugural club to be visited by the RFU groundforce team who re-decorated the inside and outside of the clubhouse and re-painted the outside of the stand.
In November 2005 floodlights were installed around the top playing pitch.
In February 2006 the Mini/Junior/Youth section of the club attained the Middx RFU “seal of approval".

In April 2006 the club won Herts / Middx 1 league, securing promotion to Powergen London North West Division 4.

In July 2006 the club was registered as a Community Amateur Sports Club and changing rooms refurbished and modernised in September 2006