The Rugby Union Writers’ Club was conceived during a discussion at the Cock Tavern, Fleet Street, between Terry O’Connor (Daily Mail) and John Reed (Sunday Express), Fred Garside (Hayters Agency) and John Reason (Sunday Telegraph).
The club was formed at a meeting in the Albany public house, Station Yard, Twickenham, on January 16 1960.
The objects of the club are
(a) to further the interests of Rugby Union Football;
(b) to further the interests of its members.
The annual meeting is held every year at Twickenham on Premiership final day, and the club stages a dinner in London in January to present the Pat Marshall Memorial Award to the outstanding rugby personality of the previous year and, if considered appropriate, a Special Award for lifetime achievement.
The personality of the year for 2016 was Eddie Jones, England’s head coach, while New Zealand’s World Cup-winning fly-half Dan Carter topped the poll in 2015.
The personality of the year in 2014 was Lichfield and England centre Emily Scarratt, while Special Awards were made to Brian O’Driscoll and Jonny Wilkinson.
The winners for 2013 were Leigh Halfpenny (Cardiff Blues, Wales and the British and Irish Lions) and Warren Gatland (Wales and Lions coach).
The winners for 2012 were Chris Robshaw (Harlequins and England) and Cliff Morgan (Cardiff, Wales and the Lions).
The club also presents tankards to unsung heroes of the game. The most recent recipients were Bryan James (secretary of Treorchy RFC in the Rhondda Valley), Chris Myers (honorary doctor at Rotherham Titans) and Des Seabrook (president and colts coach of Orrell; past player, coach and administrator with Orrell, Lancashire, the North of England and England). All three were guests at the dinner in January 2017 and their awards publicised in local newspapers and club websites. Others honoured with club tankards have included England’s most-capped women’s player Rochelle Clark, Dave Townsend from Cheltenham RFC, Nick Oates of Wetherby RUFC, Terwyn Williams from London Welsh and the Welsh Exiles, three fund-raisers at Cirencester RFC, Alison Donnelly (Scrum Queens website), Rob Smith of Wasps, Sam Drury (Ossett) and Roy Lewis (Ebbw Vale).
RUWC OFFICERS 2016-2017
President: David Hands
T: 07770 350845
Chairman: Sarah Mockford
T: 07733 332536
Vice-chairman: Robert Kitson
T: 07785 778126
Hon Secretary: Hugh Godwin
T: 07968 392688
Asst Hon Sec: Sara Orchard
T: 07740 930814
Hon Treasurer: Chris Jones
T: 07774 772820