Rugby League Cares brings special Heritage Tour to The National Coal Mining Museum for England

This summer the National Coal Mining Museum for England will host the Rugby League Cares special exhibition Rugby League Heritage on Tour from 1 – 21 August 2015.

The exhibition delves into the origins of the sport, from its birth in Huddersfield to its split from the Rugby Union, and highlights the links between Rugby League and coalmining. The sport will celebrate its 120th anniversary on 29 August making its time at the Museum even more special.

Featuring the Mike Stephenson collection, the exhibition also explores a range of other themes such as the World Cup, Rugby League abroad, the banning of the game in Vichy France, Rugby League fans and equality, including the first female and black players.    

The exhibition includes an impressive collection of memorabilia from Brian Beva’s boots to the ball from the infamous 1954 Challenge Cup Replay Final. Alongside the display, visitors will be able to watch footage of key games.

The opening of the exhibition will be presented by David Hinchliffe, Chair of Trustees and lifelong Wakefield Trinity RLFC fan; Neil Fox MBE, former mineworker and Rugby League’s all-time record scorer; Professor Tony Collins, former Director of the International Centre for Sports History and Culture at De Montfort University and one of the country’s premier sports’ historians.

Darran Crowd, Collections Officer at the Museum comments,

“The links between coal mining and sport are many and varied, from amateur teams playing at the local colliery sports ground through to Olympic and Para-Olympic athletes employed by the National Coal Board. The National Coal Mining Museum for England’s historic collection reflects a number of these sports, football, boxing, cricket, athletics, swimming…the list goes on! The Museum is proud to be a partner Rugby League Cares, uniting the history of coal mining and Rugby League. If you have a story or an object that unites mining and rugby the Museum would like to hear from you.”

For information about the Museum and its galleries, visit or call 01924 848806.

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