FOOTBALL: Foxes and Sky Blues join Rugby’s diamond jubilee

The club's many successes over the last 60 years include lifting the FA Vase at Wembley in 1983
The club's many successes over the last 60 years include lifting the FA Vase at Wembley in 1983

Club celebrate 60 years since start of Valley Sports

Valley’s 2016 Diamond Jubilee will see a series of events commemorating the club’s first ever competitive fixture, including a visit to Butlin Road by two teams of footballing legends from Coventry City and current Premier League champions Leicester City.

The anniversary celebrations date back to that first game in the Rugby & District League Division Three on September 8, 1956, when a Valley Sports (as they were known at that time) side beat Dunchurch Lodge 7-0 at Thornfield.

The club has transitioned through a number of identities since, whilst achieving considerable success and advancement along the way – finally adopting the Rugby Town moniker eleven years ago.

One of the club’s original founders and its first secretary Keith Coughlan is looking forward to the latest opportunity to fondly remember Valley’s rich history.

He said: “The 50th anniversary was well-supported in 2006, and we are hoping that it will be the same this time round too.

“We should have many ex-players travelling from across the country and also internationally to be here for the main weekend of celebrations – including some of the line-up from that first game.”

Ex-Rugby players Craig Herbert and Tony Clarke are currently assembling a Valley Legends squad to face their professional counterparts in the two games.

These will be on Sunday, August 21 (v Leicester) and Sunday, September 11 (v Coventry) respectively, with a celebration dinner on Friday, September 9 in the Butlin Road hospitality suite also forming part of the jubilee schedule.

A commemorative calendar and a ‘Valley Diamond Draw’ are also planned, with a number of nominated charities set to benefit from the anniversary event series.