Winchester Rugby Club
The Club was founded in 1929 by 17 enthusiasts who used to meet in the Cart & Horses in Kings Worthy, before games against local rivals. The club colours were decided by simply buying the only shirts stocked in the local shop - they were black and amber then and still are, albeit enhanced by sponsorship logos these days.
The first "ground' was a field rented from a farmer in Kings Worthy, which sufficed until 1971 when the present 10 acre ground was purchased from Winchester City Council for the sum of £18,000 (this would buy you an allotment in Winchester today). The site was not without it's problems, being a former city dump, but many years of painstaking effort by the members has resulted in three superb playing fields and a clubhouse which is the envy of many of our opponents.
The 1970's were a very successful era culminating in the Hampshire Shield win against Jersey in 1975. The playing membership grew significantly during this period allowing the formation of 2nd 3rd and even 4th teams as well as a Colts team fed by local schools.
The Eighties were a period of consolidation with the First XV's fortunes fluctuating between promotion to London SW3 and relegation to Hampshire One. By the mid 90's a number of members decided that it was time to put Winchester on the rugby map. Supported financially by local entrepreneur Ashley Levett (who went on to take Richmond into the Premiership), the First XV started to gain success and then promotion which took them from Hampshire One to London Division One in four short years. During the same period Winchester reached two semi finals and two finals of the Hampshire Cup, winning it outright in 1998 and 1999. In fact 1999 could be seen as the pinnacle so far with the elusive League and Cup double.