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The History of North Shields RFC

NORTH Shields RFC was formed as Smiths Dock Rugby Club in 1922 by Peter Hardwick the England International. The players consisted mainly of the dockyard skilled craftsmen resulting in the name of the club in the early years being nicknamed 'the Artisans'. In 1961 the Club moved to Preston Playing Fields and in 1963 opened it's much loved, and over the years much altered single storey 'shed', built by the members. The present facilities are the result of a housing development in the area in 1993. This resulted in the new two storey club house, two new pitches with state of the art drainage facilities and new floodlighting.

NSRFC ClubhouseThe beginning of the national league structure in 1990 saw North Shields lose some players to local rivals. However the strong team spirit and sense of identity saw a young team mature and progress from Durham and Northumberland Division 3 to 1. The team based around a muscular pack and hard running backs reached the Semi-finals and Quarter finals of the Pilkington Shield in succession 1993/94 and 1994/95 as well as the semi-final of the Northumberland Senior Shield in 1996 and recently winners of the Northumberland Senior Shield in 2000-01.

North Shield's new willingness to embrace the philosophies of 'total rugby' has seen the club attract a number of disenchanted local players looking to rediscover their enjoyment of the sport. The one thing that has remained constant over the years is the warm welcome extended to anyone coming through the doors.

The Club has retained a close atmosphere through the years and Alan Guy kept match report cuttings from local newspapers which you can find at Blast from the Past and you may even recognise some of the players still playing (even in the 1st XV) today!