A unique exhibition is being held in Huddersfield Town Centre on Saturday 29 August 2020 to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the formation of Rugby League
For the first time, all the major trophies in the sport will be gathered together in one place – the Coral Challenge Cup, Betfred Super League Trophy, the Rugby League World Cup, the Women’s World Cup and Wheelchair World Cup will all be displayed in St George’s Square.
Who has organised the exhibition?
We have organised the exhibition in collaboration with partners Rugby Football League, Rugby League Cares, Banana Kick and Huddersfield BID.
What’s it all about?
As well as the historic anniversary, the exhibition marks the beginning of Kirklees’ journey to the Rugby League World Cup in 2021 when a quarter final match will be held at the John Smith Stadium on 12 November. The celebrations also mark the start of the programme to develop the first National Rugby League Museum with the shadow board being set up to oversee progress in the next twelve months meeting for the first time after seeing the exhibition. This new museum is to be established in the George Hotel where 21 Northern teams met on 29 August 1895 and 20 voted to break away from the Rugby Football Union to form their own league.
As part of the 125 celebrations, there will be a Challenge Cup match played at the John Smith Stadium on 22 August which will be televised and the Huddersfield BID will launch an interactive Rugby League trail around Huddersfield Town Centre on 29 August. Members of the public will be able to learn more about rugby league by scanning QR codes located around Huddersfield Town Centre which will guide fans through some of the game’s most exciting moments.
Cllr Shabir Pandor, Leader of Kirklees Council, said:
“We are very excited to be working with the RFL, Rugby League Cares and others to bring rugby league home to its birthplace. Rugby League is a significant part of Kirklees’ history and we are proud to tell this story and how the sport has impacted on our towns and villages. The exhibition is a first and provides an opportunity for us to thank all those who supported our successful bid to host the National Rugby League Museum and celebrate with local rugby league fans by inviting them to have their photo taken with the cups.”
Simon Johnson, the Chair of the Rugby Football League, said:
“We are delighted that the 125th anniversary of the foundation of our great sport will be marked in St George’s Square – where it all started, with that radical meeting in 1895. The game has so much to celebrate, especially as we look forward to staging the Rugby League World Cup in 2021 – and now the establishment of a National Rugby League Museum in Huddersfield. We are grateful to Kirklees Council for recognising Huddersfield’s unique place in history as the birthplace of a sport.”