Club History 1 of 6



  • Richmond aims to be the most inspiring and inclusive community rugby club promoting rugby excellence, enjoyment and friendship.
  • To ensure the club is fully self-funding and remains one of the top 30 clubs in England. Richmond Men's 1st XV compete in the RFU Championship (second tier) and Richmond Women 1st XV play in the Women's Championship South.
  • We are ambitious and strive to be the best community rugby club in the UK, offering first-class, well-coached and medically well-supervised rugby opportunities for all, both sexes and all ages, five Senior Men’s XVs, one Students/U21 XV, one Colts XV, one Veteran’s XV (the ‘Heavies’), two Women’s XVs and Youth and Mini rugby for nearly 600 boys and girls. All this within a friendly environment, offering great networking opportunities, both social and commercial.


  • Formed in 1861, the second oldest club in England.
  • World’s first inter-club fixture against Blackheath in 1864.
  • One of the eight founder clubs of the RFU in 1871.
  • Hosted first experimental floodlit game in 1878.
  • Played at the Richmond Athletic Ground since 1889.
  • Played the first All Black touring side in 1905.
  • Played in the first game at Twickenham in 1909.
  • Celebrated 100th Anniversary with a match at Twickenham against RFU presidents XV in 1961.
  • The first Women’s International match was played at Richmond 1986.
  • One of the first clubs to go professional in 1996.
  • Promoted to Premiership for the 1997/98 season.
  • Celebrated our 150th Anniversary with a match against the Barbarians in 2011.


  • 126 men and over 100 women have been capped for their country whilst playing at Richmond.
  • A touring club. Richmond teams have toured to South Africa, Australia, East Africa, USA, South East Asia, Fiji, Paraguay, Brazil, Argentina, France, Canada, Italy and Croatia.
  • Affiliated clubs include Collegians in Durban, Hamiltons and Villager in Cape Town, Warringah Rats in Sydney plus 7 others in Argentina, Jersey, Canada, Kenya, France, USA and HMS Richmond.
  • Resulting from this touring culture, a natural club for long-term visitors to the UK from countries such as South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Argentina.


  • One of the largest clubs in the UK with over 2700 members.
  • A broadly based community club providing competitive and well coached rugby to both sexes and all ages.
  • Great networking opportunities, both social and commercial.


  • The club went into Administration in 1999 as a result of the financial strains of the professional era playing in the Premiership and the reduction of the league from 14 clubs to 12 clubs.
  • A financial rescue was successful in bringing the club out of Administration and onto a sound financial footing, so preserving its traditional home venue with seven full sized pitches, which it shares with long time co-tenant London Scottish.
  • For the 1999/2000 season, at the request of the RFU, Richmond took a sabbatical from the leagues and played a variety of ‘friendlies’.
  • Reintroduced at level 9 in 2000/01 from which the Men's First XV gained promotion four years running by winning their league and winning 83 league games in succession, a national record.
  • Promoted to London 1 (level 5) in 2004/05 just below the national leagues finishing 3rd/2nd/4th and league winners in 2007/08 being promoted to National 2 South, finishing 4th in 2009 and 3rd in 2010/11, being promoted to National 1 in 2012, finishing 7th out of 16 in 2013/14 & 2014/15, winning the league in 2016/17 and were promoted to the Championship. In 2019 Richmond were relegated to National 1, but promoted straight back to Championship in 2020.
  • BBC London Team of the Year 2004 (All non-professional Sports).
  • Winners of six Surrey Cups between 2001 to 2007.
  • Richmond Women won the premiership in 2010/11/12/14/16, playing in the first televised club play off final, and also the first Premier 15s Sky Sports televised game, playing in the Premiership from 2017 to 2020.
  • Richmond Rugby CLG formed and acquires 100% of the shares in the rescue company RVL in March 2015 to secure the future ownership of the Richmond group of companies.
  • Richmond Rugby awarded RFU Club of the Year for 2016.