History of The Rugby Union Safety Association

Our History
2023-12-02

Farrell taking a break

England captain Owen Farrell is taking a break from international rugby to protect his mental health and will miss next years Six Nations. He will keep on playing for Saracens. Farrell has been subject to social media abuse and some unfriendly reaction from crowds at the recent world cup.

Farrell taking a break
2023-09-01

Season 2023

The season 2023 started with only 10 clubs in the Premiership with the loss of Wasps, Worcester(including ladies) and London Irish for financial reasons. Likewise the Championship was reduced to 11 with the loss of Jersey. Very difficult times for players, staff, management and supporters at these clubs.

Premiership Rugby 2023
2023-03-09

2nd Honorary President

Shaun Roberts was made Honorary President in recognition of outstanding services to RUSA

2023-01-23

Can concussion in rugby be prevented?

English rugby to try to reduce concussion risk at grass roots level will lower the height at which players can legally tackle. The change which will be introduced from July 1st 2023 means a player must tackle at the waist or below.

Reduced Concussion Risk
2022-12-19

England appoint Leicester coach to replace Eddie Jones

Steve Borthwick has been appointed as the new head coach of the England men's rugby team on a five-year contract, the Rugby Football Union (RFU) announced on Monday.
Former England captain Borthwick, previously in charge of Premiership champions Leicester, has replaced Eddie Jones just over nine months out from the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France.

Borthwick Replaces Jones
2022-10-17

Wasps join Worcester into administration

Wasps had debts totalling £95m when the club went into administration, reports by administrators FRP have revealed.
This led to mass unemployment and distress to players and staff. The situation for both clubs remains uncertain. A panel savaged English rugby authorities for their running of the sport.

Wasps £100m debt
2022-09-26

Worcester Warriors went into administration

Administration for the Warriors comes amid deep financial uncertainty across the Gallagher Premiership;
This led to mass unemployment and distress to players and staff. The situation for both clubs remains uncertain. A panel savaged English rugby authorities for their running of the sport.

Warriors Into Administration
2022-09-01

COVID 19 Disruption

In 2019/20 and 2021/2 Covid completely disruption the lives of people across the world. This brought unprecedented challenges to everyone. These challenges still remain. It is hoped that 'normality' will return to domestic rugby for the season 2022/3

2022–23 Premiership Rugby
2022-05-01

England Red Roses Win Grand slam

England came from behind in Bayonne to beat France and claim a fourth successive Women's Six Nations title on a thrilling final day of the Championship

How they did it
2022-03-20

France Wins Grand Slam

France ended their 12-year wait for a men’s Six Nations Championship title as victory over England wrapped up a 10th Grand Slam.

France Win Grand Slam
2022-03-01

Ealing and Doncaster Denied Premiership Promotion

Premiership Rugby promotion blocked for Ealing Trailfinders and Doncaster Knights by RFU. Ealing Trailfinders and Doncaster Knights have been denied potential promotion to Premiership Rugby by the RFU after failing to meet minimum standards criteria.

Premiership Promotion Denied
2022-01-15

Terrestrial TV Premiership Rugby

Premiership Rugby agreed to deal for matches to be screened on terrestrial TV including the final as new chief exec Simon Massie-Taylor recognises need for visibility

Rugby World Details
2020-04-12

Season Ends Early

The Rugby Football Union has ended the 2019/20 season with immediate effect for all league, cup and county rugby except the Premiership, chief executive Bill Sweeney has announced following the coronavirus crisis.

Season Ends Early
2020-01-18

Saracens Relegated

Premiership rugby confirmed that Saracens will be relegated from the Premiership at the end of the season following persistent salary cap breaches,

Saracens Relegated
2019-11-05

Saracens Fined

In November 2019 the enquiry into Saracens Rugby Club in relation to salary capping resulted in a fine of £5.36 millions and the deduction of 35 points for season 2019-20. No appeal was launched by the club.

Saracens Fined
2019-11-02

World Cup 2019

The organisation of the World Cup in October and November 2019 was highly successful for the host nation Japan. In safety terms there were unprecedented challenges with a hurricane which resulted in the cancellation of fixtures and a massive clear up to allow others to proceed. Well done to all those involved. In the final South African beat England 32-12

World Cup 2019
2019-10-19

RUSA first Chairman and Founder Member

the loss of Ian Edwards the first chairman, one of the founder members and driving force behind the formation of RUSA . Ian a former member of Northants Police and safety officer of Northampton Saints RFC was greatly respected in Policing and rugby safety terms. Ian, supported by family, friends and colleagues fought a brave battle with Parkinsons.

2019-08-01

Life President of FSOA

August 2019 saw the unexpected death( cardiac arrest) of Jim Chalmers MBE. Life President of FSOA, Jim was an icon in sport safety terms, especially football. He was a friend and mentor to many. An author of 2 books on the subject of safety and an acknowledged national and international expert.

2019-03-20

3 Year Sponsorship Deal

'At the AGM 20 March 2019 Twickenham we were pleased to announce a three year sponsorship deal with Alert CCTV systems. See resources in home page'

Alert Systems
2018-10-30

6th Edition of the Green Guide

30th October SGSA launched the latest, 6th edition of the Green Guide

2018-05-25

We become GPDR Friendly

On 25 May 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation came into force. Accordingly the website was reviewed and updated.

2018-03-13

Farewell To Stan

The 2018 AGM at the home of Wasps, Ricoh Arena Coventry, RUSA members present bade a fond farewell, and at the same time welcome to one of the originators of RUSA Richard( Stan) Stanford. Stan has been immense in his contribution to rugby safety but since his move to Hillsborough Stan has found it difficult to balance his commitment to this challenging football environment and his commitment to RUSA as vice chairman. Accordingly he stood down this year but his past achievements and his anticipated future contribution to both sports was recognised with his nomination, and acceptance as Honorary President. Thank you Stan and also to Andy Fraser(Southern rep) and Guy Naylor(Northern Rep) who stood down from the committee.

2016-09-01

Website Revamped

Following an upgrade to the RUSA website with a brief to encourage members to engage on the website more easily and to be more friendly with mobile devices RUSA website for 2016 launched.

2016-03-08

Regional Meetings

At the 2016 AGM it was agreed that the rule re regional meetings was to change viz: There will be a minimum of three meetings per year. One of the three meetings will be held in March and will be designated the Annual General Meeting of the Association. There will be also a minimum of two further committee meetings, which the chairman may designate as open to all members full and /or affiliated. There will be a northern, southern, midlands rep on the committee.

2015-09-18

Rugby World Cup

The Rugby World Cup 2015,whilst not considered a success on the field by the host nation, was a success off in terms of organisation and safety. The majority of stadia were football grounds consequently organisers, managers, staff and fans had to be trained and prepared for cultural, legal and management changes in football club stadia staging rugby union matches. RUSA is happy that its members contribution in the planning and execution of the event was appreciated and recognised. This was demonstrated by a thank you invitation for our Chairman, on members behalf, to Buckingham Place alongside other organising bodies and individuals

2015-03-10

10 Years in the making

RUSA commemorated its 10th year at the Gloucester AGM 2015. At its inception RUSA was established as Premiership clubs 'get together'. Since then RUSA has developed as an association to work together to help and support one another across the rugby family during times when the sporting industry continues to provide us with daily challenges. In this regard RUSA is now recognised by safety partners and stakeholders including Premier Rugby, RFU, WRB, SGSA, as an important element. We strive to increase our networking and our constituent clubs include premier, championship and national league 1.We are also pleased to welcome our Welsh and Scottish safety colleagues.

2012-09-01

Website Revamped

2012 website server moved and revamped

2010-09-01

Working with Industry

During 2010 and 2011, RUSA have continued to work with all organisations within our industry, including RFU, PRL, SKY, ESPN and Heineken/Amlin Challenge competitions. These continued links have assisted RUSA to continue being the vocal point for all its members. RUSA also elected a new Chairman, Shaun Roberts, Worcester Warriors. New Committee members were also brought in take RUSA to the next stage.

2009-09-01

Rules Change

In 2009 the introduction of the Championship saw a change of RUSA rules, extending its potential membership to include Premier Rugby, Championship League and National League One Rugby Union grounds, and UKnational stadiums where professional rugby union is played.

2008-09-01

Minimum Standards Document

After much campaigning by RUSA and after discussions with PRL the 08/09 Minimum Standards Document for all Premier Rugby Clubs included the requirement for Safety Officers and Deputy Safety Officers to be qualified or to be signed up and working towards the Safety Officer NVQ Level 4 Qualification by the start of the 08/09 season.

2007-03-21

Ian Edwards stands down

On Wednesday 21st March 2007 Ian Edwards stood down as Chairman of the association at the AGM hosted by London Wasps. In recognition of his exemplary service Ian was awarded the position of Honorary President, David Culling was elected as Chairman and Kevin Fisher took on the position of Treasurer.

2006-03-22

First AGM

Wednesday 22nd March 2006 saw the first AGM of the association held at Headingley Leeds. The AGM saw two changes in the committee with Kevin Fisher (Plymouth Albion) and Stuart Kennedy (Exeter) replacing Steve Ball and Clive Doyle

2005-11-01

Inaugural Meeting

The inaugural meeting of the Rugby Union Safety Association (RUSA) was held at Northampton Rugby Club in January 2005, after Ian Edwards and Melvyn Payne (Northampton Saints) had written to all Premier Rugby Club Safety Officers and Stadium Managers to gauge the interest into forging links between clubs and the possibility of forming such an organisation

2005-07-05

London Meeting

On 5th July 2005, Committee Members met with the SIA in London to challenge their proposal to introduce the registration of all stewards, under the SIA Regulations. Having fought off these proposals, stating that stewards were "Safety", these were later made exempt from registration.

2005-06-07

RUSA Launched

RUSA was launched on Tuesday 7th June 2005 at Twickenham when the rules and constitution were formally adopted and the association's first committee elected.

Created by
Ian Thatcher
Last modified
Friday, 13 January 2023
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The inaugural meeting of the Rugby Union Safety Association (RUSA) was held at Northampton Rugby Club in January 2005, after Ian Edwards and Melvyn Payne (Northampton Saints) had written to all Premier Rugby Club Safety Officers and Stadium Managers to gauge the interest into forging links between clubs and the possibility of forming such an organisation. The meeting proved to be extremely positive and as a result a steering group consisting of Ian Edwards, David Culling (Newcastle Falcons) and Shaun Roberts (Worcester Warriors) was formed and set the task of defining the objectives of the association and producing a draft constitution. The need to include both Safety Officers and Stadium Managers from National League One was also identified.

RUSA was launched on Tuesday 7th June 2005 at Twickenham when the rules and constitution were formally adopted and the association's first committee elected.

The first committee consisted of

Chairman Ian Edwards Northampton Saints 
Secretary Shaun Roberts Worcester Warriors
Treasurer David Culling Newcastle Falcons
Committee Steve Ball Leeds
  Clive Doyle London Irish
  Richard Stanford London Wasps

On 5th July 2005, Committee Members met with the SIA in London to challenge their proposal to introduce the registration of all stewards, under the SIA Regulations. Having fought off these proposals, stating that stewards were "Safety", these were later made exempt from registration.

Wednesday 22nd March 2006 saw the first AGM of the association held at Headingley Leeds. The AGM saw two changes in the committee with Kevin Fisher (Plymouth Albion) and Stuart Kennedy (Exeter) replacing Steve Ball and Clive Doyle

On Wednesday 21st March 2007 Ian Edwards stood down as Chairman of the association at the AGM hosted by London Wasps. In recognition of his exemplary service Ian was awarded the position of Honorary President, David Culling was elected as Chairman and Kevin Fisher took on the position of Treasurer.

After much campaigning by RUSA and after discussions with PRL the 08/09 Minimum Standards Document for all Premier Rugby Clubs included the requirement for Safety Officers and Deputy Safety Officers to be qualified or to be signed up and working towards the Safety Officer NVQ Level 4 Qualification by the start of the 08/09 season.

In 2009 the introduction of the Championship saw a change of RUSA rules, extending its potential membership to include Premier Rugby, Championship League and National League One Rugby Union grounds, and UKnational stadiums where professional rugby union is played. 2009 also saw the launch of RUSA's own website.

During 2010 and 2011, RUSA have continued to work with all organisations within our industry, including RFU, PRL, SKY, ESPN and Heineken/Amlin Challenge competitions. These continued links have assisted RUSA to continue being the vocal point for all its members. RUSA also elected a new Chairman, Shaun Roberts, Worcester Warriors. New Committee members were also brought in take RUSA to the next stage.

Website Redesign RUSA are now re-designing their website, which will be launched at their AGM in March 2012 and continue to increase awareness of their presence in Rugby Union

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