Lurgan is one of the oldest Rugby Clubs in Ireland celebrating its 125th anniversary in the 2005 – 2006 season. Lurgan first fielded a team in 1880. The only surviving records from those early years of Lurgan’s history are two framed photographs of the teams from 1880 and 1900.
In those early years Lurgan played at Soye’s Folly in the town before moving to Annaloiste and then to Toberhewny.
The Great War saw the playing of rugby suspended. In 1919 the Club was reformed and rented the showground in Lurgan Park as a playing pitch. It also obtained the use of changing facilities, including the famous sunken bath, and an entertainments room at Brownlow Castle.
In 1922 Lurgan Cricket Club was formed by the amalgamation of Brownlow and Lurgan YMCA Cricket Clubs. The inaugural President was H C Malcolm, and Leo Donnelly was the first Captain. Until that time Brownlow had played on the ground in Lurgan Park, beside which the Jubilee Fountain now stands, and the YMCA Club had used a field behind Brownlow House.
The advent of the 2nd World War again saw the suspension of rugby in the town. With the cessation of hostilities rugby once more resumed. Trevor Pollock, the Club’s first Patron, was one of those involved in the re-formation of the Club. Remarkably he had also been involved in reforming the Club at the end of the 1st World War as well.
The newly formed club moved to the pitch in the centre of Lurgan Park, where they laid a square and built a wooden pavilion and continued to play (except for a short break) till they joined with Lurgan Rugby Football Club and moved to Pollock Park in 1975. The break was during the Second World War, when so many members joined the services that the club was unable to function properly.
On behalf of Lurgan Rugby Football Club may I take this opportunity to extend a warm welcome to visitors to our website. Our grateful thanks go out to all our club sponsors, whose generous support is vital as the club seeks to continue to grow, to develop its own home grown players and strive for further success.
I am proud to preside over a club with such a rich heritage. With a history stretching back as far as 1880 Lurgan Rugby Football and Cricket Club was formed after the Rugby and Cricket clubs amalgamated in 1980. Since, the club has gone from strength to strength, enjoying major success in all of our disciplines.
I look forward to making new acquaintances and renewing old friendships along the touchline next season. So whether you haven’t been to Pollock Park before or haven’t been up to a game in a while you will be made more than welcome.
Jack Leathem is the patron of Lurgan Rugby Football and Cricket Club.
He is a retired civil servant (HM Customs and EXCISE). He was educated at Lurgan College – a local grammar school – Stranmillis College, and Belfast and Queen’s University, Belfast, where he took a BSc. (Econ).
His interests are gardening, reading and sports.
Jack played cricket (pre-amalgamation) and Rugby (pre and post amalgamation) for Lurgan between 1955 and 1976.
He was a member of both rugby section and management committees. Was elected to first committee (rugby) in 1970 and held office in some capacity in the club until 2010.
He lives in the village of Waringstown with his wife, Maureen, three miles from his birth place. When he has the time to do so, he also writes poetry and short stories.
He has recently published his latest book Aughillie.
Some sound advice from Ulster Branch to ALL Clubs
A gentle reminder of the “Spirit of the Game”
In the Youth Regulations Part 2; 5 During the Match (a) Players and coaches must behave within the spirit of the game
Unfortunately, despite being raised at the last two Youth Committee Games, there does not seem to be a demonstration of this spirit on a Saturday morning. Coaches continue to 'delight' in getting their side 'cricket scores' against a weaker/reduced numbers team - even when the opposition have already conceded the game. You have 'won' the league points, why insist on continuing with a one-sided slaughter. Neither side are learning or developing their rugby skills.
Beaten sides, like this, are demoralised and we risk the young player walking from the game. We are short of oppositions as it is, don't let us reduce this through this behaviour.
This issue was raised at the Clubs Committee (Tuesday 20th November) with some disgust from the Club Committee Reps, that this was being allowed to happen. It was pointed out that apart from the spirit of rugby there is also a safety concern. The President, has asked the Youth Committee to ensure this stops.
There has also been some reports of in-appropriate behaviour of SOME coaches. COACHES are supposed to be role models to the young players. Encourage your players - yes, demean the opposition players - no.
Respect and accept official’s decisions - at all times. IF (when) a report is received from a Referee, the Coach will be dealt with by the off-field disciplinary panel.
|Patron||Mr. Jackie Leatham|
|President||Mr. Paul Wilson|
|Vice President||Mr. Andrew Davis|
|Chairman||Mr. Billy Boyd|
|Honorary Secretary||Mr. Albert Dunlop|
|Honorary Treasurer||Mrs Nichola Richardson|
|PRO & Head of Events||Mr. Raymond Acheson|
|Grounds Convenor||Mr. Kyle Geddis|
|Rugby Section||Mr. Gary Robinson|
|Rugby Section||Mr. Chris Stevenson|
|Head of Finance Committee||Mr. Sam Rusk M.B.E|
|Cricket Section||Mr. Gary McCullough|
|Rugby Section (Chairman)||Mr. Mark Prentice|
|Cricket Section||Mr. Ross McCollom|
|Rugby Section||Mr. Aaron Carson|
|Cricket Section (Captain)||Mr. Richard Clarke|
|Rugby Section||Mr. Lee Derby|