THE LIONS FIRST EVER MATCH – 150TH ANNIVERSARY

02 January 2019

As today marks the 150th anniversary of the club’s first-ever match, Club Director Steve Wild takes a look back at that historic day.

OUR FIRST-EVER MATCH – 150TH ANNIVERSARY – 2ND JANUARY 1869

January 2nd marks an important anniversary in the history of Swinton Lions Rugby League Club.

On this date in 1869, exactly 150 years ago today, Swinton played its first-ever ‘competitive’ match.

Their opponents on that historic day were the Number One Company of the 46th Lancashire Rifle Volunteers. Thought to have been played on a field alongside Burying Lane (now Station Road), the game was won by the visitors by five goals to one.

Having spent the first two and a half years of their existence just playing games amongst the club’s internal membership, little did those men know that this game would mark the very beginning of 150 years of competitive rugby football, with all its glorious successes and heart-breaking disappointments.

Within the next few weeks, we hope to publish a short booklet describing the background and circumstances of this historic occasion:-

What was Swinton like as a place to live in 1869?

What are the origins of rugby football and how did it come to Swinton?

Who were the pioneers, the men who laid the foundations for our great club?

Who exactly were the 46th Lancashire Rifle Volunteers, Swinton’s opponents 150 years ago today?

What is the story of the first match itself?

All these questions and more will be revealed in Swinton Rugby Football Club – 150th Anniversary of the First Match’, which will be available soon through official outlets.

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