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RFU Redefines Rugby’s Core Values

23 September 2009

  • Two year consultation names teamwork, respect, enjoyment, discipline and sportsmanship as core values
  • Campaign launched to promote core values throughout the game

  This is rugby logo

Photo: RFU Archive

The Rugby Football Union and its partners have launched a national campaign called ‘This is Rugby’ to promote and protect the core values of the sport. The project is the first time a sport has set out to define its value system in formal terms.

Following a two year consultation process, Teamwork, Respect, Enjoyment, Discipline and Sportsmanship have been identifies the core values that underpin rugby union and the ‘This is Rugby’ campaign will vigorously promote their place at the heart of the game.

According to Sport England, rugby union is the fastest growing major sport in the country, attracting more people than ever to enjoy a vibrant game as professional and amateur players, volunteers and supporters.

But the expansion of the game has brought new challenges, and in 2007 the RFU identified a need to sustain the standards that are rugby’s strengths.

The response was to put together the Core Values Task Group two years ago to run an extensive consultation exercise. The evidence assessed included written and oral testimonies, focus groups and an online survey.

“These five values are what brought us into the sport and what keep us part of it, they are what rugby union has to offer and go way beyond the pitch and the clubhouse,” said RFU President John Owen.

“Rugby can be proud of its unique spirit but it’s important to make sure that is protected for the future. Our next task is to share and promote them within the whole game.”

Promoting the core values

The England team united before an RBS 6 Nations match

Photo: Getty Images

Now the RFU, in partnership with Premier Rugby Limited and the Professional Rugby Players Association (PRA) will work to promote the Core Values through the ‘This is Rugby’ campaign to everyone involved in rugby, from the England team to the grassroots game.

Promotional material and advice will be made available to clubs around the country to help them educate players, coaches, administrators, volunteers and supporters about the core values.

It is supported by the International Rugby Board and closely linked to the IRB Playing Charter, the expression of the sport’s principles made by the game’s global governing body.

“The Core Values are a key theme of our Strategic Plan, enshrined in our mission statements and codes of conduct, and it’s the intention of the RFU and its partners to communicate them to the whole game,” said RFU Chief Executive Francis Baron.

The following links provide further information on the background of the Core Values Task Group, what the core values stand for, and more reaction to the campaign from the PRA and Premier Rugby.