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A sport born of rebellion?


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#81 Padge

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Posted 12 June 2013 - 10:57 PM

Yes they were trying to act for the good of the game. But the ruling body disagreed with their argument, so they rebelled. The RFU was made up of very powerful and influential men, they didnt want a bunch of upstarts telling them how to run the game. It most definitely was a rebellion.

Who were these very powerful men at the RFU, what power did they have?

 

Rowland Hill, secretary of the RFU during all this was a Conservative Councillor in Greenwich not the bloody Prime Minister.



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#82 Johnoco

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Posted 12 June 2013 - 11:11 PM

Who were these very powerful men at the RFU, what power did they have?

Rowland Hill, secretary of the RFU during all this was a Conservative Councillor in Greenwich not the bloody Prime Minister.

In Victorian England you didn't have to be the PM to have influence. Simply being rich was a start. I think they were brave to take the stance they did and just because they weren't waving pitchforks or storming the bastille doesn't mean they werent rebelling.

No I don't care if you're if you're into different bands

No cause for so much hatred, I'm just a different man

Pull off that cover, I will too, and learn to understand

With music deep inside we'll make world unity our plan

 

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#83 Padge

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Posted 12 June 2013 - 11:18 PM

In Victorian England you didn't have to be the PM to have influence. Simply being rich was a start. I think they were brave to take the stance they did and just because they weren't waving pitchforks or storming the bastille doesn't mean they werent rebelling.

So the Northern Club secretaries I listed earlier were rich men so by your definition they were equally as influential and powerful.

 

So the rich and powerful were having a spat with the rich and powerful, hardly a rebellion.

 

Have you read the potted history I posted earlier, it was a dispute about who decided fixtures and the outcome was a cock up because the Northern Clubs made naive decisions that played right into the RFU's hands, it was hardly a rebellion. Its like saying a Saturday night punch up in a town centre is a civil war equivalent to what is going on in Syria (queue jokes about [insert town]). 



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Radio 5 Live: Saturday 14 April 2007
Dave Whelan "In Wigan rugby will always be king"

 

This country's wealth was created by men in overalls, it was destroyed by men in suits.


#84 Northern Sol

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Posted 12 June 2013 - 11:30 PM

So the Northern Club secretaries I listed earlier were rich men so by your definition they were equally as influential and powerful.

 

So the rich and powerful were having a spat with the rich and powerful, hardly a rebellion.

 

Have you read the potted history I posted earlier, it was a dispute about who decided fixtures and the outcome was a cock up because the Northern Clubs made naive decisions that played right into the RFU's hands, it was hardly a rebellion. Its like saying a Saturday night punch up in a town centre is a civil war equivalent to what is going on in Syria (queue jokes about [insert town]). 

To misquote George Orwell,a revolution is when the middle hope to change places with the high and enlist the help of the low to do so.



#85 Johnoco

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Posted 12 June 2013 - 11:38 PM

So the Northern Club secretaries I listed earlier were rich men so by your definition they were equally as influential and powerful.

So the rich and powerful were having a spat with the rich and powerful, hardly a rebellion.

Have you read the potted history I posted earlier, it was a dispute about who decided fixtures and the outcome was a cock up because the Northern Clubs made naive decisions that played right into the RFU's hands, it was hardly a rebellion. Its like saying a Saturday night punch up in a town centre is a civil war equivalent to what is going on in Syria (queue jokes about [insert town]).


Clearly I don't think this particular bunch of rebels were on a par with the Afghan Rebels or the Russian revolution. But just because it was not as serious or have world wide implications it doesn't mean it wasn't a rebellion. They were told to behave one way and follow a certain set of rules. They felt differently and rejected their demands. No blood was spilt and no one was beheaded but it *was* an act of rebellion whether you agree or not.

No I don't care if you're if you're into different bands

No cause for so much hatred, I'm just a different man

Pull off that cover, I will too, and learn to understand

With music deep inside we'll make world unity our plan

 

7 Seconds -Walk Together, Rock Together


#86 fieldofclothofgold

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:26 AM

last time I was home the Guildford-Oxygen was renamed The Northern Monkey.Sounds about right for a plaque about the subject under discussion

[Padge] " The Yorkshire clubs resigned from the Yorkshire Union on August 26th at a meeting at The Green Dragon Hotel in Leeds, by resigning from the Yorkshire Union they resigned from the RFU, .

The Lancashire clubs left their Union at a meeting in Manchester at the Grand Hotel. in May 1895"

 

Great !

Get two Commemorative Plaques up, 1 in Manchester Pre-dating the Yorkshire Clubs resignation for bragging rights , 1 in Leeds predating the George Hotel Meeting so leeds can have the bragging rights over Huddersfield .

We don't need to worry who owns the George anymore ..

 

the Green Dragon I guess would be is referred as being replaced by the Guildford Pub  , now Oxygen on the Headrow Leeds ?

the Grand is still in Piccadilly square albeit now trendy flats

Get Stevo to buy a Flat in the Grand , put his memorabilia there ,

we can all visit over Magic Weekend in May  ... cos that's now the real anniversary of the split in 1895 ...

now that's rebellion


but you and I weve been through that and this is not our fate.
So let us so let us not talk falsely now.
The hour is getting late
FROM 2004,TO DO WHAT THIS CLUB HAS DONE,IF THATS NOT GREATNESSTHEN i DONT KNOW WHAT IS.

JAMIE PEACOCK

#87 keighley

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:55 AM

So the Northern Club secretaries I listed earlier were rich men so by your definition they were equally as influential and powerful.

 

So the rich and powerful were having a spat with the rich and powerful, hardly a rebellion.

 

Have you read the potted history I posted earlier, it was a dispute about who decided fixtures and the outcome was a cock up because the Northern Clubs made naive decisions that played right into the RFU's hands, it was hardly a rebellion. Its like saying a Saturday night punch up in a town centre is a civil war equivalent to what is going on in Syria (queue jokes about [insert town]). 

 

The AGMs of the RFU in 1893 and 1894 both turned down proposals to allow broken time payments mostly by using proxy votes collected from all and sundry by the RFU. Clearly the payment of broken time either as a way of forestalling open professionalism or to help out the overwhelming number of working class players was a big issue.

 

The owners of the northern clubs supported broken time because without it they would soon have no players

 

In 1895 Huddersfield, Salford, Wigan, Leigh and others were suspended from playing because of paying their players broken time

 

The dispute about fixtures arose because the suspended clubs were going to finish in a relegation spot because oft their suspensions and would lose income and prestige as a result. They were in this position because they had been paying their players broken time. The power of the big Lancashire clubs was broken because they were all suspended because of the broken time issue. There were so many suspended and facing serious financial problems that they did resign from the lancs competition so they could form their own league for their survival.

 

 

Such discussions about forming their own league has been going on for some time including the big Yorkshire clubs and the mass suspension of the Lancashire clubs was the catylyst for this decision. They all met at the George in the famous meeting They pledged to m ove forward with the new league based on the principles of paying broken time compensation and they all resigned from the RFU and gave the letters to Joe Platt for forwarding to the secretary of the RFU.

 

The dispute over fixtures does not seem to have been a big issue. All this info is in Tony Collins book Rugby's Great Split.



#88 Steve May

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 03:56 AM

In Victorian England you didn't have to be the PM to have influence. Simply being rich was a start.

 

Thank God we don't live like that any more eh?


That's me.  I'm done.


#89 Steve May

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 04:16 AM

Good topic this. Whether the issue which caused the separation was broken time payments or wanting cup and league competitions is open to debate, and I suspect it was a combination of the two. What I did start to wonder, some years ago, is why the RFU was so dead set against what they saw as professionalism, when, particularly with regard to broken time payments, it was only making sure players weren't out of pocket when missing a work shift because of having to travel long distances to matches on Saturday mornings. After some research, what I did find out is that rugby lost loads of clubs to pro football when that started and, more than likely, the RFU were anxious to avoid a repeat situation. Only speculation, I know, but it does sound plausible.

 

 

I've often been baffled by the Victorian stance against professionalism, but having thought about it a lot, I think it stems from the fact that many sports started out closely related to trades.

 

If you take rowing, there would have been a fair number of professional oarsmen whose job it was to move boats up and down rivers.  They would have done that all day, shifting passengers and cargo.    It's a short step from that to holding races to decide who the best oarsmen is.    And it's a short step from that to holding races in which anyone could have a go, if they were oarsmen by trade or not.    It's clear that the people who row for a living will be better at it than those who are just having a go for fun, so it's entirely fair that there should be separate competitions for professionals and amateurs.  And it would clearly be cheating for someone who made a living out of rowing to participate in a race against someone who did not.

 

That seems to me to be the core of the anti-professionalism argument.  Once you add in the inevitable English class snobbery and the mid-Victorian rise of sports that were not directly related to trades and you get to the troubles of the 1890s that afflicted many sports but which were particularly badly handled in rugby.


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#90 Steve May

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 04:19 AM

So the Northern Club secretaries I listed earlier were rich men so by your definition they were equally as influential and powerful.

 

So the rich and powerful were having a spat with the rich and powerful, hardly a rebellion.

 

Have you read the potted history I posted earlier, it was a dispute about who decided fixtures and the outcome was a cock up because the Northern Clubs made naive decisions that played right into the RFU's hands, it was hardly a rebellion. Its like saying a Saturday night punch up in a town centre is a civil war equivalent to what is going on in Syria (queue jokes about [insert town]). 

 

The Super League War in Australia wasn't a real war either.

 

I'd be interested to hear people's thoughts on the similarities between the events in Australia in 1995 and the split of 1895.


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#91 Trojan

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 07:34 AM

I don't really see the relevance to the argument to be honest Geoff.  The Northern Clubs wanted to set up a league system, the Unions wanted to have a vetoe on fixtures, there is a wealth of evidence that this was a massive problem in the 1890s

 

But the point is that the RFU thought that if a player couldn't afford to play then he shouldn't be able to play.  And TBF this was probably at the time an acceptable attitude.  The NU (for whatever reason) gave those players to opportunity to be able to afford to play their sport.  Thus players like Albert Goldthorpe, Harold Wagstaff  and their successors down to the present day of Sinfield, Tomkins and Hock are able to display their skills on the field of play. TBH that's rebellion enough for me.


"Your a one trick pony Trojan" - Parksider 10th March 2013

#92 Padge

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 07:40 AM

The AGMs of the RFU in 1893 and 1894 both turned down proposals to allow broken time payments mostly by using proxy votes collected from all and sundry by the RFU. Clearly the payment of broken time either as a way of forestalling open professionalism or to help out the overwhelming number of working class players was a big issue.

 

The owners of the northern clubs supported broken time because without it they would soon have no players

 

In 1895 Huddersfield, Salford, Wigan, Leigh and others were suspended from playing because of paying their players broken time

 

The dispute about fixtures arose because the suspended clubs were going to finish in a relegation spot because oft their suspensions and would lose income and prestige as a result. They were in this position because they had been paying their players broken time. The power of the big Lancashire clubs was broken because they were all suspended because of the broken time issue. There were so many suspended and facing serious financial problems that they did resign from the lancs competition so they could form their own league for their survival.

 

 

Such discussions about forming their own league has been going on for some time including the big Yorkshire clubs and the mass suspension of the Lancashire clubs was the catylyst for this decision. They all met at the George in the famous meeting They pledged to m ove forward with the new league based on the principles of paying broken time compensation and they all resigned from the RFU and gave the letters to Joe Platt for forwarding to the secretary of the RFU.

 

The dispute over fixtures does not seem to have been a big issue. All this info is in Tony Collins book Rugby's Great Split.

 

I have read Collins and a lot more, I have spent hours trawling material on this.

 

The split was over fixtures, broken time was not the big issue, the RFU wanted that to be seen as the issue when things came to a head and everyone has bought the RFUs line, even the RFL.

 

By the time the meeting at The George came about there is plenty of evidence that the clubs were already no longer members of the RFU  I suggest you trawl through some old issues of newspapers like The Yorkshire Post, The Lancashire Daily Post, The Wigan Examiner etc. along with magazines such as Athletic News.

 

Professionalism was a hot topic being discussed in a lot of newspapers and this blinds people to what the real issues at club level where.


Edited by Padge, 13 June 2013 - 07:44 AM.


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#93 Padge

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 08:09 AM

But the point is that the RFU thought that if a player couldn't afford to play then he shouldn't be able to play.  And TBF this was probably at the time an acceptable attitude.  The NU (for whatever reason) gave those players to opportunity to be able to afford to play their sport.  Thus players like Albert Goldthorpe, Harold Wagstaff  and their successors down to the present day of Sinfield, Tomkins and Hock are able to display their skills on the field of play. TBH that's rebellion enough for me.

 

During Huddersfield's suspension in 1893 The Pall Mall Gazette, the RFU's mouthpiece in London, (Later to become The Evening Standard) railed that Huddersfield shouldn't have been suspended they should have banned for life and that hopefully this would have caused the secession of the rest of the Yorkshire clubs as that is what is wanted. It was the RFU that wanted a showdown over professionalism and broken-time unfortunately for them there didn't seem to be enough evidence to go all the way to expulsion or maybe a reluctance at the time, however the statement in the PMG makes it quite clear what the RFU thinking was.



Visit my photography site www.padge.smugmug.com
Radio 5 Live: Saturday 14 April 2007
Dave Whelan "In Wigan rugby will always be king"

 

This country's wealth was created by men in overalls, it was destroyed by men in suits.


#94 fieldofclothofgold

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:12 PM

If broken time payments had been allowed,what are the thoughts of how the sport of rugby would have evolved?I know we are talking the impossible the RFU would never go down that road,but if they did could the sport be rivaling Association football today?


Edited by fieldofclothofgold, 13 June 2013 - 02:13 PM.

but you and I weve been through that and this is not our fate.
So let us so let us not talk falsely now.
The hour is getting late
FROM 2004,TO DO WHAT THIS CLUB HAS DONE,IF THATS NOT GREATNESSTHEN i DONT KNOW WHAT IS.

JAMIE PEACOCK

#95 Larry the Leit

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:26 PM

During Huddersfield's suspension in 1893 The Pall Mall Gazette, the RFU's mouthpiece in London, (Later to become The Evening Standard) railed that Huddersfield shouldn't have been suspended they should have banned for life and that hopefully this would have caused the secession of the rest of the Yorkshire clubs as that is what is wanted. It was the RFU that wanted a showdown over professionalism and broken-time unfortunately for them there didn't seem to be enough evidence to go all the way to expulsion or maybe a reluctance at the time, however the statement in the PMG makes it quite clear what the RFU thinking was.

 

Ed I, you're clearly a bit of a font of knowledge on this.  If you could summarise the roots of rugby league, giving the right emphasis to the most important reasons to the splits in say 200-500 words, then I think this would be an extremely valuable précis that should be posted to Wikipedia, AND included in the match day progs for all development area clubs.

 

I dread the day when my son comes home from school and tells me that rugby league was formed because the greedy northerners wanted to be paid for sport.  


Edited by Larry the Leit, 13 June 2013 - 02:26 PM.


#96 keighley

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:29 PM

The Super League War in Australia wasn't a real war either.

 

I'd be interested to hear people's thoughts on the similarities between the events in Australia in 1995 and the split of 1895.

 

I don't know too much about that but when the whole of the sydney metroplitan RU resigned en masse ond moved to RL in the early 1900's it was a rebellion and the definitive book on the subject is names as such ' Rugby Rebellion".

 

As far as I know the 1995 affair was a power struggle between to mega rich millionaires over TV coverage of the game, namely Kerry Packer and Rupert Murdoch. Money was king to both parties whereas in 1895, it was the payment of some cash to players of the lower classes versus the desire to eject those players from RU by using the subterfuge of pristine amateurism to force a schism to attain their ambitions.



#97 Padge

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:31 PM

Ed I, you're clearly a bit of a font of knowledge on this.  If you could summarise the roots of rugby league, giving the right emphasis to the most important reasons to the splits in say 200-500 words, then I think this would be an extremely valuable précis that should be posted to Wikipedia, AND included in the match day progs for all development area clubs.

 

I dread the day when my son comes home from school and tells me that rugby league was formed because the greedy northerners wanted to be paid for sport.  

 

I'll see what I can do.



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#98 Johnoco

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:36 PM

Suffragettes. The vast majority of these were middle class well off women.
They were still rebels.

No I don't care if you're if you're into different bands

No cause for so much hatred, I'm just a different man

Pull off that cover, I will too, and learn to understand

With music deep inside we'll make world unity our plan

 

7 Seconds -Walk Together, Rock Together


#99 keighley

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 02:45 PM

I have read Collins and a lot more, I have spent hours trawling material on this.

 

The split was over fixtures, broken time was not the big issue, the RFU wanted that to be seen as the issue when things came to a head and everyone has bought the RFUs line, even the RFL.

 

By the time the meeting at The George came about there is plenty of evidence that the clubs were already no longer members of the RFU  I suggest you trawl through some old issues of newspapers like The Yorkshire Post, The Lancashire Daily Post, The Wigan Examiner etc. along with magazines such as Athletic News.

 

Professionalism was a hot topic being discussed in a lot of newspapers and this blinds people to what the real issues at club level where.

 

 But the AGMs of the RFU in 1893 and 1894 were dominated by the issue of broken time. the communique announcing the formation of the northern Union, from the horses mouth you might say, specifically mentioned broken time payments.

 

The mass suspension of clubs due to broken time payments and other financial inducements to players was threatening them with extinction. That the RFU stated that any club playing fixtures against clubs unilaterally and without proof deemed by the RFU to be professional, would be banned would certainly be an issue but surely the underlying cause of the split was the desire of the RFU to eject the now dominant hoi polloi players from their game and make it once again the preserve of the upper class sportsman and using the broken time issue to forrce this result.

 

I do not have time to peruse the sources you list but if you could summarise why the fixtures dispute was the key issue and exactly what was the dispute, I would be thankful seeing as Tony Collins, who seems to be the pre eminent writer and scholar on the great Split does not seem to make a big issue of fixtures at all.



#100 Saint Billinge

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 03:24 PM

A very interesting topic, but so very confusing! 


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