Shottery Rugby Club

Shottery Rugby Club, c.1986-1987. They are in the dark solid shirts, and white shorts.
Image supplied by Derek Bowdery

I moved here in 1984, and was approached by the vicar of St Andrews – the reverend David Capron, who wanted to start a Rugby club and asked if I wanted to join. Together with Greville Evans , the health and safety officer of Stratford Canners (who produced canned goods) along with ex-Stratford players Andy Fairbrother and Malcolm Cowell, we made up the committee. The name of the club was soon decided – we were the ‘Shottery RFC’.

Pre-season training

Initially our clubhouse was The Bell inn, Shottery. Pre season training for would-be club members was held at the Long Marston army camp, starting in July 1985 for commencement of the season 85/86. The seasons ran from September to the end of April. The club became a member of the Rugby Football Union (RFU) and South Warwickshire RFU and I represented the club at SWRFU meetings. Initially our home games were played at Stratford High School. We had to change grounds several times and didn’t have a permanent clubhouse – finally the council set the pitch up and we could practice in the same place every week. After having two pitches owned by the council, we eventually settled at Stratford-upon-Avon RFU clubhouse – the club’s still there to this day!


We improved as seasons went by and joined a minor Warwickshire League. But then disaster happened – several of the best players wanted to progress and so moved to a higher league. It was difficult to recruit players and the club decided to resign from the league structure and play ‘friendly’ fixtures.

This story was created as part of an intergenerational digital inclusion project, in conjunction with Orbit Heart of England, with the assistance of students from Stratford Girls’ Grammar School.

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