Centennial Memorial Match

On 5 November 2016, an extraordinary international rugby match will take place in the Dutch town of Leeuwarden.
A century ago in 1916, teams representing England and Scotland played an exhibition rugby match on foreign soil, to the delight of thousands of paying local spectators. But these were not rugby tourists …  MORE >>

‘Dutch Delight’ Tim Visser is ambassador of this event.



1916 – 2016


To celebrate the significant contribution by commodore Wilfred Henderson and the sports teams of HMS Timbertown (1914-1918 Groningen) to Dutch sport, the following three day event has been planned.

3 November


In the evening of Thursday 3 November the Centennial Memorial events will have their kick off at the Historisch Centrum Leeuwarden. Three experts will speak on Timbertown, the Great War and sports history with a special focus on rugby.
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4 November

Welcome Teams

The program of Friday 4 November consists of a number of elements which embrace the core values, traditions and spirt of rugby.

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5 November

Memorial Rugby

Saturday 5 November is Match Day. At 14:00 the Centennial Memorial Match between Royal Navy Rugby Union teams from England and Scotland will kick off at the grounds of Rugby Club Greate Pier in Leeuwarden.

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Royal connection

The great-grandfather of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, played during the HMS Timbertown in 1916. Fredrick George Glassborow (born 17 Dec 1889 in Leyton, Essex, England) responded to his countries call to action. He was one of 545 men and officers from Benbow...

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Rugby World Magazine

Worlds best selling rugby magazine writes about the Memorial Rugby Match of November 5 Article about the 1916 – 2016 Memorial Rugby England - Scotland match on November 5 in Leeuwarden.

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Rugby picture nominated for historical doc. of the year

Our partner Historisch Centrum Leeuwarden, has entered a picture of the first international rugby game on Dutch soil into the Stuk van het Jaar election. Historical Document of the Year (Stuk van het Jaar) is an online public event by the association of Dutch...

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Royal Navy Rugby Union plays in Inverdale Challenge

The Royal Navy Rugby Union (RNRU) has a long and distinguished history dating back to 1906. They are committed to promoting participation and enjoyment of rugby at all levels within the Naval Service. The Inverdale Challenge, where the 2016 Leeuwarden match is part...

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Endorsement World Rugby

Rugby MAD is proud and grateful to have received an endorsement for the Centennial Memorial Match event from the chairman of World Rugby, Bill Beaumont. As Chairman of World Rugby it is always interesting to hear about historic occasions involving our sport that are...

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