Michael Rowe – Museum Curator
Photo: RFU Archive
How did you get to where you are today?
My main interests at school were history and sport. I wanted my career to involve history but didn’t fancy being a teacher. I did some voluntary work at my local museum and eventually took an MA in Museum Studies. My first paid job in museums was in Kent, I then moved to Weybridge in Surrey and prior to arriving at Twickenham I worked at the River and Rowing Museum in Henley-on-Thames.
Why did you join the RFU?
As I mentioned above history and sport are two of my main interests, and this job seemed a perfect combination of the two.
What does your role involve?
I’m responsible for all the services provided by the World Rugby Museum and Twickenham Stadium tours. I manage six members of staff and 40 volunteers. A typical day might involve researching an exhibition, cataloguing objects in our stores, promoting the Museum, liaising with visitors and colleagues or planning the Museum’s services. Every day is very varied and very different form the one before!
What do you enjoy most about working for the RFU?
A combination of arriving in the morning at such an inspirational place and listening to our volunteer tour guides and their amazing stories.
What is your take on Rugby?
If I’m honest football has always been my favourite sport and the one I played (very badly) at school, university and in the local Sunday Leagues. But I’ve always thought rugby is the best sport to watch - with its combination of individual duels, set-pieces and team work. From a historian’s perspective it’s interesting to see how the game continues to develop and change.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
My baby daughter, usually two or three times.
What does the future hold for you both at the RFU and your career?
I’d like to see the Museum develop and improve, to reflect the great changes that have happened in the game since the Museum was opened in 1996 as well as take advantage of some of the technological developments since then. In terms of my further career, the museums world is a very small one and so planning a career is very difficult. My main aim has always been to enjoy my job. Having said that, my fiancé is French and the idea of spending a few years as a house husband in France seems quite attractive!
Message to prospective applicants…
If you’re interested in rugby, and want to work with fellow-minded people, then the RFU is definitely the place for you.
Tell us something interesting about you?
I once had the pleasure of showing ‘Toadie’ (Ryan Maloney) from Neighbours around the Museum!