‘We are told that the ripples caused by a pebble thrown into a pond spread ever outward gathering momentum on their way.'

In April 1922, at the invitation of the then Secretary of Devonport Services, Engineer Commander S F Cooper, I took a team of Welshmen to play the Services in Devonport. Since then, I have enjoyed the hospitality of Services players as far from the Rectory Field as Ceylon and China, and in April 1952 Crawshay’s Welsh XV paid their 21st visit to Devonport and their 20th to Camborne.

A single stone throw perchance into the ocean of Rugby Fixtures in 1922 caused a ripple which in 1952 became our anniversary wave. As with all solidly established organizations, the growth of this touring side has been gradual and spontaneous to which many generations of players have contributed of their diversities of gifts.’


Captain Geoffrey Crawshay - May 1952


The ripple caused in this rugby world when Captain Geoffrey Crawshay took his first team to Devonport on April 22, 1922 has gathered considerable momentum. The Club has now played, since that first match, in many countries of the world. There have been fifteen French tours and tours to Italy, Germany, Russia, South Africa, Ireland, Spain, Latvia, Czech Republic, Poland, Slovenia, Croatia, Thailand and seven-a-side tournaments in Hong Kong, Dubai, Monte Carlo, Portugal and Scotland.

When Geoffrey Crawshay died in 1954 the Club might have lapsed but thanks to the guidance of a few old players headed by the late Judge Rowe Harding, who had played in the first game, and the late Wilfrid Jones who became the first official Secretary of the Club, and with great support from Colonel Sir William Crawshay, the Club entered a new era.

'In an age of increasing leisure both sport and the arts have a vital part to play if we are to maintain a balanced and healthy society. To be a good rugby forward is not automatically to be a Philistine, although many remain in this happy state. The arts and sport in general have a great deal in common, if only because in both fields initiative and perseverance are required.’

Colonel Sir William Crawshay, DSO ERD TD DL - September 1972


In 1964, in order to finance the Club, Sir William suggested appointing twelve Vice-Presidents at a subscription of five guineas each. Today we have more than 800 Vice-Presidents from all over the world. But some eighty-seven years on since the first game the spirit of Crawshay’s Welsh RFC remains the same. It is how the game is played on and off the field that matters and the friendships that are made for life.

In a fast-changing world of rugby and sport the spirit of Crawshay’s Welsh never changes. Today the Club is in the hands of splendid Officials. It was a pleasure to work with them and appreciate to the full the reason why it is successful, happy and respected everywhere the game is played.

Ymlaen, Clwb Rygbi Crawshay i fynd o nerth i nerth.

The Club is able to select any player in the world but encourages Welsh rugby talent whenever possible. Many internationals have played for the Club in seven-, ten- and fifteen-a-side matches. The game has changed over the years but the Club has always had a reputation for playing free-flowing attacking rugby.

The Club also runs a Youth XV who play at Under 18 and Youth levels. It selects boys from all over Wales and gives them every opportunity to show their rugby talent. Traditionally, the Club plays fixtures versus the Welsh public schools, although the Youth XV has visited South Africa in 1998 and 2003, and has recently been victorious in Portugal (2009, 2011).

The Welsh Rugby Union permits the arranging of six senior fixtures per season. Crawshay's Welsh RFC prides itself on its amateur status but many full-time professional players are only too pleased to pull on the Club shirt, when invited.

CWRFC - February 2012

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