100 years ago, on 30 January 1915, a charity International rugby match was played at the County Ground in Northampton between Scotland and England, arranged to help Olney resident, former Saints captain and England international Edgar Mobbs recruit sportsmen to his own World War One battalion. To commemorate the centenary and honour the 16 Olney players who were killed in the Great War, Olney RFC is hosting a special event and two memorial rugby matches, with Edgar Mobbs’ family in attendance, on Saturday 24 January 2015, where current players from the East Midlands region will line up against The 1st Battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment and Olney Ladies will face the Army Womens XV.
The event will include a display of rugby memorabilia and wartime photos of Olney sportspeople, and is supported by the Cowper and Newton Museum, the Royal British Legion, and the Heritage Lottery Fund. Chairman of Olney Rugby Club, Jarlath McElroy, said: “Edgar Mobbs was both a sporting and war hero and we are proud to be hosting these matches with the support of his family and the Army. A century on from that famous game, we are set for an enthralling encounter. The day will be a fitting tribute to an exceptional man, a special piece of history, and to the many sportsmen from Olney and across the region who lost their lives in World War One.”
Olney RFC and Cowper and Newton Museum are working in partnership with Great War MK to deliver this event.