IT was a full house at the Buccleuch Centre on Friday night to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the formation of Langholm Rugby club.
With 130 attending, it was a great evening of exceptional speeches taking in the club’s 150 years since its 1871 inception.
The club’s chairman, Kenneth Pool welcomed the guests, including those from other clubs, club officials, life members of the Scottish Women’s International team, Ally Ratcliffe and Jilly McCord, and four members of the championship winning team of 1958/59 George Maxwell, John Elliot, Billy Murray and Zander Turnbull.
Unfortunately, Langholm, Scotland, and British Lion, Billy Steele could not attend but good wishes came from him.
Proposing the toast to Langholm RFC was Hawick historian and raconteur Ian Landles who got the evening off to a great start in his own inimitable style. Club captain Nathan Smith followed this up with his own speech.
Callum Graham who is known for his work with sport in the region presented the club with an award in recognition of its special achievement from Annandale and Eskdale Sports Awards. Councillor Ronnie Tait gave this to club president Dougie Beattie.
A toast was given to the Scottish Rugby Union, followed by a speech from SRU president Ian Barr.
The club was delighted that former president of the SRU and former Scottish international rugby player Andy Irvine was able to attend to propose a toast to rugby football.
During the evening, there were a number of videos shown to help celebrate the club’s anniversary, with messages coming in from several friends and alumni of the club.
This included, Wasps Rugby player and Langholm’s own, Robin Hislop, SRU player Lisa Thomson from Melrose who was vice-captain for the 2021 Women’s Six Nations Championship, and Langholm’s Tommy Elliot, who gained five caps for Scotland between 1968 and 1970.
To add to the celebrations, it was announced on Friday by the SRU that former Langholm and Scotland Women’s player, Ally Ratcliffe had been inducted into the SRU hall of fame. The chairman congratulated Ally on behalf of the club.
A vote of thanks was given by the chairman for an excellent celebration of 150 years of Langholm rugby.