The Webb Ellis Trophy Tour – Prelude to the Rugby Union World Cup

The Webb Ellis Trophy, the Rugby Union World Cup is currently touring the UK so that members of the public can get a close look at it prior to the World Cup staring in September.

I took this picture on Saturday 8th August when the cup visited Leeds Dock.

I am a citizen of Leeds and I am in that area of Leeds fairly regularly. You will find a lot of articles on this blog about Royal Armouries and events I have attended there. Leeds Dock also host many events throughout the year, such as Easter Market.

Leeds Dock also hosts Thought Bubble, the UK’s largest Comic Convention (anything of similar or larger size in the UK is billed as FILM and Comic, often with Film dominating the Comics).

I don’t write about Sport often but I decided this year to do a few articles that are Sport related. I only write about things I enjoy, so there won’rt be any Football on here…

Rugby League is my first-love but I do really enjoy watching Rugby Union. So a chance to see the Webb Ellis Trophy up close was something I wasn’t passing up.

There are actually two cups, the original was made in 1906 and the replica was made in 1986. They are both used under the same name. This isn’t unusual, there are three versions of the Calcutta Cup, competed for between England and Scotland when the pair meet as part of the Six Nations. In the case of the Calcutta Cup England and Scotland permanently have a replica each and use those trophies for public appearances. The original Calcutta Cup is too fragile for use but is displayed by the winner in a glass cabinet.

Me n Webb EllisSo I don’t know which of the two Webb Ellis Trophies I saw, and it doesn’t matter. It is part of Rugby Union history, named after William Webb Ellis, who is credited for creating the modern game – there is dispute regarding this but most fans seem happy to accept the version of the creation of Rugby.

The trophy is well along in the tour and you can learn more on the official website.

Webb Ellis TourTo the right is a map showing the regions that the Cup is visiting. Leeds, 8th August 2015, was on Day 58 of the tour.

At time of publishing this article the next public event is Day 61, Tuesday 11th August, when it will appear in Great Yarmouth, Ipswich and Colchester.

The Ipswich appearance is apparently dedicated to Prince Alexander Sergeevich Obolensky, a Russian born Prince, of the Rurik dynasty, who was a naturalised Briton who died in a training accident during WWII. The Prince was a member of the England RU Squad.

Day 67, Sunday 16th August, will see the Webb Ellis Trophy in Rugby, the birth place of the game.

The first match of the competition is on Friday 18th September 2015 between the hosts England and the national team of Fiji. Kick-off is at 20:00 at Twickenham.

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