Rugby Memorabilia

Rugby Memorabilia

The Reverend F. Marshall wrote Football: The Rugby Union Game in 1892 and revised it for a second edition shortly after. The book is a superb mix of the technical and the historical and is still regarded by many as the book on the origins of the game.

A first edition would cost around £150. Another popular book is The Complete Rugby Footballer by D. Gallaher and W. J. Stead. Gallaher was the captain of the 1905/06 New Zealand tourists and the book contains fascinating reflections on the tour and pointers as to why New Zealand were so dominant.This will also cost around £150.

Rugby Memorabilia

One of the most sought-after books is Rugby Football Internationals Roll oj Flonour by E. H. D. Sewell. Published in 1919, it is a very moving tribute to the rugby players who lost their lives in the Great War. One of the casualties was the aforementioned Dave Gallaher, and the book is very rare. A good copy would cost around £300.

Match tickets are popular items to collect and the number of their collectors have increased recently. Many collectors will keep their ticket with the programme, and values are increasing in this area faster than anv other at the moment.

Having said that, values for  match tickets in recent seasons are small, hut tickets from major matches played before WW2 are now valued in excess of£20.

Other match-related paper memorabilia popular with collectors are dinner menus and many autographed menus can attract serious sums. As with everything, it is a case of supply and demand and menu collectors are frequently far from eclectic in their interests.

 Recent years have seen a growing interest in memorabilia from leisure  businesses who wish to create bars and other themed venues with a rugby 'feel.' Some rare programmes have been bought for this purpose and jerseys are now being bought to line walls.

In most cases, the jerseys used are replicas autographed by players, but many match-worn jerseys are now being snapped up at auction for this purpose, thus denying the genuine collector with shallower pockets the chance to enhance their collections.

Jerseys are attractive items and there are several major collectors. There are also several factors which affect the interest and value of the jersey. Match  worn jerseys with provenance arc-most popular and if the wearer is a major figure in the sport then values increase. There is a general view that autographed match-worn jerseys are effectively defaced.

Rugby Memorabilia

Arguably the most attractive of all types of memorabilia are caps. Caps were traditionally awarded by clubs and schools to their players, and when international rugby began, those players received a cap after their first appearance.

Rugby International players only receive one cap and consequently are both rare and unique. International caps with provenance could begin at £400, but club and representative caps can be obtained for as little as £50.

Rugby Memorabilia
Lapel badges are a popular collecting Subject too and many rugby clubs are now capitalizing on this by producing new badges each season. Traditionally, badges were produced by a club for its members and supporters, and the supporters of some clubs, such as Llanelli, produce a lapel badge for every season. Tour badges are interesting, with official British Lions badges being very  popular. An official badge from the 1950 Lions' tour recently fetched £60 at auction.

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