Here are some of the current Wigan Rugby Heritage Society projects…
The main aim for this project is to simply catalogue, research, locate and ‘look after’ the resting places of our former players here at the Wigan Rugby League Club. Many of us have lost loved ones and have may regularly visit a local cemetery to remember those we have lost. The WRHS think that it is important to enhance the recognition of the men and women who have had a part to play with the Club since our formation.
By finding out where past players, and other interested parties are buried, we can do what we can to remember them and look after their place of rest in a time when many of these graves are long forgot by families and the public. How many times have people walked their dogs in Lancaster Cemetery and walked past James Leytham? Who has ever noticed the inscription at Lower Ince Cemetery (Wigan) highlighting a beloved former President of the Wigan Club? Who has ever spotted Dick Ramsdale’s inscription of “England Rugby Forward”? Would it not entice you on the off chance to think what Richard Ramsdale has done? He played in the famous Rorke’s Drift Test Match of 1914 and alongside players such as Lance Todd, James Leytham and Nat Silcock.
We are in need of people who have an interest and a bit of spare time to help me with this. No experience necessary! What we aim to do is have a list of all past players who are no longer with us and map their locations in whichever cemetery they happen to be located.
Information that would be needed:
- Cemetery (which one)
- Name/ Surname
- Plot/ Location if known
- Rating (how well is it kept?)
To get involved in this project, simply send an email with your thoughts and opinions to [email protected] and use the title ‘Grave Project’ and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
The aim would be to collect and collate The Wigan RLFC Collection and provide support through a ‘Wigan RLFC Collection’ trust through suitable methods such as crowd funding, fundraising and donations with regular meetings taking place for members to sit, discuss, reminisce and view the items in the collection.
First and foremost, we at WRHS believe that all memorabilia should remain in the hands of family members. However, if this isn’t possible, we would like to be in the position to have the chance to preserve this and to held in trust for future generations to enjoy.
We would aim to purchase top end memorabilia i.e. Championship Medals, Caps and similar “top drawer” items from auction sites via our fundraising and membership, so items of significant historical value to the Wigan Club stay for the people of Wigan and not lost in private collections.
We would also look to create a Memorabilia Amnesty. One of our goals it to simply record what pieces of memorabilia are out there. We’d like to collate, photograph and catalogue these pieces over time and have the opportunity to use the images to highlight the extensive history of this great Club.
The Wigan Rugby Heritage Society - Heritage Trail
The idea is to create a Heritage Trail to highlight those places in Wigan, which are culturally and historically significant to that of the Wigan Rugby Football Club. The idea is a simple one: using a smartphone, device or simply a map, follow the route around Wigan and learn a bit about relevant sites in the town. When you download the QR code, it takes you to a web page where you read about the location you’re at.
At present, this is at a concept stage with around 30 sites so far have been identified as being significant to the Wigan Club, from pubs, residences, old grounds and even stretches of grass you probably did not know had an impact on the Wigan Club.
This would be a trail around the town highlighting significant locations linked to the founding and history of the Club and by having a QR reader this would bring this to life adding further detail.