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Rugby is a
market town A market town is a European settlement that obtained by custom or royal charter, in the Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and p ...
in eastern
Warwickshire Warwickshire (; abbreviated Warks) is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first published by William Chambers ( ...

Warwickshire
, England, close to the River Avon. In 2020 its population was estimated at 77,285, making it the second-largest town in Warwickshire. It is the main settlement within the larger
Borough of Rugby The Borough of Rugby is a Non-metropolitan district, local government district with borough status in eastern Warwickshire, England. The borough comprises the town of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby where the council has its headquarters, and the rura ...
which has a population of 108,935 (2019 estimate). Rugby is situated on the eastern edge of Warwickshire, near to the borders with
Leicestershire Leicestershire (; postal abbreviation Leics.) is a landlocked county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first publishe ...

Leicestershire
and
Northamptonshire Northamptonshire (; abbreviated Northants.), archaically known as the County of Northampton, is a historic county in the East Midlands The East Midlands is one of nine official regions of England at the ITL 1 statistical regions of England ...

Northamptonshire
. It is north of
London London is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowerc ...

London
, east-southeast of
Birmingham Birmingham ( ) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Ro ...

Birmingham
, east of
Coventry Coventry ( or ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city in the West Midlands (county), West Midlands, England. It is on the River Sherbourne. Coventry has been a large settlement for centuries, although it was not founded and given its c ...

Coventry
, and south-southwest of
Leicester Leicester is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Routled ...

Leicester
. Rugby was a small rural market town until the mid-19th century, when the siting of a major railway junction at the town spurred the development of manufacturing and engineering industry, and the rapid growth of population.
Rugby School Rugby School is a public school (English independent Independent or Independents may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Artist groups * Independents (artist group), a group of modernist painters based in the New Hope, Pennsylvania, a ...
, an independent school situated in the town, is the birthplace of
Rugby football Rugby football is a collective name for the family of team sports of rugby union and rugby league, as well as the earlier forms of football from which both games, as well as Australian rules football and gridiron football, evolved. The two v ...
which, according to legend, was invented in 1823 by a Rugby schoolboy
William Webb Ellis William Webb Ellis (24 November 1806 – 24 January 1872) was an English Anglican Anglicanism is a Western Christianity, Western Christian tradition that has developed from the practices, liturgy, and identity of the Church of England f ...

William Webb Ellis
."Six ways the town of Rugby helped change the world"
BBC. Retrieved 11 March 2019
The school was founded in 1567 and rose to national prominence as a public school in the 18th century.


History


Early history

Early
Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the three-age division of the prehistory Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of human history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's pa ...
settlement existed in the Rugby area: The River Avon formed a natural barrier between the
Dobunni The Dobunni were one of the Iron Age tribes living in the British Isles The British Isles are a group of islands in the North Atlantic off the north-western coast of continental Europe Continental Europe or mainland Europe is the ...
and
Corieltauvi The Corieltauvi (also the Coritani, and the Corieltavi) were a tribe of people living in British Iron Age, Britain prior to the Roman conquest of Britain, Roman conquest, and thereafter a ''civitas'' of Roman Britain. Their territory was in what is ...
tribes, and it is likely that defended frontier settlements were set up on each side of the Avon valley. Rugby's position on a hill overlooking the Avon, made it an ideal location for a defended Dobunni watch settlement. During the
Roman period The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn Rhōmaíōn) was the post-Republican Republican can refer to: Political ideology * An advocate of a republic, a type of governme ...

Roman period
the Roman town of Tripontium was established on the
Watling Street Watling Street is a historic route in England England is a that is part of the . It shares land borders with to its west and to its north. The lies northwest of England and the to the southwest. England is separated from by the ...

Watling Street
Roman road Roman roads ( la, viae Romanae ; singular: ; meaning "Roman way") were physical infrastructure vital to the maintenance and development of the Roman state, and were built from about 300 BC through the expansion and consolidation of the Roman Re ...

Roman road
around north-east of what is now Rugby, this was later abandoned when the Romans left Britain. The small settlement at Rugby was taken over by the
Anglo-Saxons The Anglo-Saxons were a cultural group Cultural identity is a part of a person's identity Identity may refer to: Social sciences * Identity (social science), personhood or group affiliation in psychology and sociology Group expression ...
around 560 AD, and it was mentioned in the
Domesday Book Domesday Book () – the Middle English Middle English (abbreviated to ME) was a form of the English language spoken after the Norman conquest of England, Norman conquest (1066) until the late 15th century. The English language underwent ...
of 1086 as ''Rocheberie''; although there are several theories about the origin of the name, a popular one is that this was a phonetic translation of the
Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic language of the Indo-European language family The Indo-European languages are a language family A language ...
name ''Hrocaberg'' meaning 'Hroca's hill fortification'; ''Hroca'' being an Anglo-Saxon man's name pronounced with a silent 'H', and ''berg'' being a name for a hill fortification, with the 'g' being pronounced as an 'ee' sound. By the 13th century the name of the town was commonly spelt as ''Rokeby'' (or ''Rookby'') before gradually evolving into the modern form by the 18th century. In 1140 the first recorded mention was made of which was originally a chapel of the mother church at
Clifton-upon-Dunsmore Clifton-upon-Dunsmore is a village and civil parish In England, a civil parish is a type of administrative parish used for local government. It is a territorial designation which is the lowest tier of local government below districts and ...
, until Rugby was established as a
parish A parish is a territorial entity in many Christian Christians () are people who follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus in Christianity, Jesus Christ. The words ''Christ ( ...
in its own right in 1221. In 1255 the
lord of the manor Lord of the manor is a title that, in Anglo-Saxon England Anglo-Saxon England or Early Medieval England, existing from the 5th to the 11th centuries from the end of until the in 1066, consisted of various kingdoms until 927, when it was ...
Henry de Rokeby obtained a charter to hold a weekly
market Market may refer to: *Market (economics) *Market economy *Marketplace, a physical marketplace or public market Geography *Märket, an island shared by Finland and Sweden Art, entertainment, and media Films *Market (1965 film), ''Market'' (1965 ...

market
in Rugby, which soon developed into a small country
market town A market town is a European settlement that obtained by custom or royal charter, in the Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and p ...
. In the
12th century The 12th century is the period from to in accordance with the . In the history of European culture, this period is considered part of the and is sometimes called the Age of the s. The experienced a significant development, particularly ...
Rugby was mentioned as having a
castle A castle is a type of fortification, fortified structure built during the Middle Ages predominantly by the nobility or royalty and by Military order (monastic society), military orders. Scholars debate the scope of the word ''castle'', but u ...

castle
at the location of what is now Regent Place. However, the nature of the 'castle' is unknown, and it was possibly little more than a fortified
manor house#REDIRECT Manor house A manor house was historically the main residence of the lord of the manor. The house formed the administrative centre of a manor in the European feudal system; within its great hall were held the lord's manorial court ...
. In any event the 'castle' was short lived: It was probably constructed early in the reign of (1135–1154) during the period of civil war known as
The Anarchy The Anarchy was a civil war A civil war, also known as an intrastate war in polemology, is a war between organized groups within the same Sovereign state, state (or country). The aim of one side may be to take control of the country ...
, and demolished in around 1157 on the orders of King
Henry II Henry II may refer to: Kings *Henry II of England (1133–89), reigned from 1154 *Henry II of Jerusalem and Cyprus (1271–1324), reigned from 1285; king of Jerusalem in name only from 1291 *Henry II of Castile (1334–79), reigned 1366–67 and ...

Henry II
. The earthworks for the castle were still clearly visible as late as the 19th century, but have since been built over. According to one theory, the stones from the castle were later used to construct the west tower of St Andrew's Church, which bears strong resemblance to a castle, and was probably intended for use in a defensive as well as a religious role.
Rugby School Rugby School is a public school (English independent Independent or Independents may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Artist groups * Independents (artist group), a group of modernist painters based in the New Hope, Pennsylvania, a ...
was founded in 1567 with money left in the will of
Lawrence Sheriff Lawrence Sheriff (or Sheriffe) (c. 1515 or 1516 – September 1567) was an Elizabethan The Elizabethan era is the epoch in the Tudor period of the history of England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I (1558–1603). Historians often depict ...
, a locally born man, who had moved to London and made his fortune as the grocer to
Queen Elizabeth I Elizabeth I (7 September 153324 March 1603) was Queen of England and Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to i ...

Queen Elizabeth I
. Sheriff had intended Rugby School to be a free
grammar school A grammar school is one of several different types of school A school is an educational institution designed to provide learning spaces and learning environments for the teaching of students under the direction of teachers. Most coun ...
for local boys, but by the 18th century it had acquired a national reputation and gradually became a mostly fee-paying private school, with most of its pupils coming from outside Rugby. The
Lawrence Sheriff School Lawrence Sheriff School is a boys' grammar school in Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby, Warwickshire, England. The school is named after Lawrence Sheriff, the Elizabethan era, Elizabethan founder of Rugby School. The school's name is often shortened to ...
was eventually founded in 1878 to continue Sheriff's original intentions. During the
English Civil War The English Civil War (1642–1651) was a series of civil wars A civil war, also known as an intrastate war in polemology, is a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, ...
, King
Charles I Charles is a masculine given name predominantly found in English language, English and French language, French speaking countries. It is from the French form ''Charles'' of the Proto-Germanic, Proto-Germanic name ᚲᚨᚱᛁᛚᚨᛉ (in r ...

Charles I
passed through Rugby in 1642 on his way to
Nottingham Nottingham ( or locally ) is a city status in the United Kingdom, city and Unitary authorities of England, unitary authority area in Nottinghamshire, England. Part of the East Midlands region, it is north of London, south of Sheffield, north ...

Nottingham
, and 120
Cavalier Cavalier () was first used by Roundhead Roundheads were the supporters of the Parliament of England during the English Civil War (1642–1651). Also known as Parliamentarians, they fought against King Charles I of England and his supporte ...

Cavalier
Horse Troops reportedly stayed at the town, however the townsfolk were sympathetic to the
ParliamentarianParliamentarian has two principal meanings. First, it may refer to a member or supporter of a Parliament, as in: *Member of parliament *Roundhead, supporter of the parliamentary cause in the English Civil War Second, in countries that do not refe ...
cause, and they were disarmed by the Cavalier soldiers. Later, in 1645, Rugby was strongly Parliamentarian, and
Oliver Cromwell Oliver Cromwell (25 April 15993 September 1658) was an English general and statesman who, first as a subordinate and later as Commander-in-Chief, led armies An army (from Latin ''arma'' "arms, weapons" via Old French ''armée'', "armed" e ...

Oliver Cromwell
and two regiments of
Roundhead Roundheads were the supporters of the Parliament of England during the English Civil War (1642–1651). Also known as Parliamentarians, they fought against King Charles I of England and his supporters, known as the Cavaliers or Royalists, who ...
soldiers stayed at Rugby in April that year, two months before the
Battle of Naseby The Battle of Naseby was a decisive engagement of the First English Civil War, fought on 14 June 1645 between the main Cavalier, Royalist army of Charles I of England, King Charles I and the Roundhead, Parliamentarian New Model Army, commanded ...

Battle of Naseby
, some to the east, in nearby
Northamptonshire Northamptonshire (; abbreviated Northants.), archaically known as the County of Northampton, is a historic county in the East Midlands The East Midlands is one of nine official regions of England at the ITL 1 statistical regions of England ...

Northamptonshire
. Until the 19th century, Rugby was a small and relatively unimportant settlement, with only its school giving it any notability. Its growth was slow, due in part to the nearby markets at
Dunchurch Dunchurch is a large village and civil parish on the south-western outskirts of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby in Warwickshire, England, approximately southwest of central Rugby. The civil parish which also includes the nearby hamlet of Toft, Warw ...

Dunchurch
and
Hillmorton Hillmorton is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire Warwickshire (; abbreviated Warks) is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers ...
which were better positioned in terms of road traffic. In 1663 Rugby was recorded as containing 160 houses with a population of around 650. By 1730 this had increased to 183 houses, with a population of around 900. Rugby's importance and population increased more rapidly during the late 18th and early 19th century due to the growing national reputation of Rugby School, which had moved from its original location at a (now long vanished) schoolhouse north of St Andrew's Church, to its present location south of the town centre by 1750. By the time of the first national census in 1801, Rugby had a population of 1,487 with 278 houses. By 1831 this had increased further to 2,501 in 415 houses. This growth was driven by parents who wished to send their boys to Rugby School, but were unable to afford the boarding fees and so took up residence in Rugby.''Rugby, Further Aspects Of The Past'' (1977) Rugby Local History Group


Modern history

Rugby's growth into a significant town was prompted by the arrival of the
railway Rail transport (also known as train transport) is a means of transferring passengers and goods on wheeled vehicle A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine that transports people or cargo. Vehicles include wagons, bicycles, motor veh ...

railway
s, as its location made it an ideal meeting place for various railway lines, by the middle of the 19th century, the railway junction at Rugby had become one of the most important in the country: The first railway arrived in 1838 when one of the earliest inter-city main lines, the
London and Birmingham Railway The London and Birmingham Railway (L&BR) was an early railway company in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and ...
(L&BR) was constructed around the town. In 1840 the
Midland Counties Railway The Midland Counties' Railway (MCR) was a railway company in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' ...
made a junction with the L&BR at Rugby, which was followed by a junction with the
Trent Valley Railway The Trent Valley line is a railway Rail transport (also known as train transport) is a means of transferring passengers and goods on wheeled vehicles running on rails, which are located on tracks. In contrast to road transport, where the ...
in 1847. By the mid-1850s there were five railway lines meeting at Rugby, with more than sixty trains a day passing through
Rugby railway station Rugby railway station serves the town of Rugby Rugby may refer to: Sports Rugby codes * Rugby football in various forms: ** Rugby league: 13 players per side *** Masters Rugby League *** Mod league *** Rugby league nines *** Rugby league sev ...

Rugby railway station
. Rugby was transformed into a
railway town A railway town, or railroad town, is a settlement that originated or was greatly developed because of a railway station or junction (rail), junction at its site. North America During the construction of the First Transcontinental Railroad in the ...
, and the influx of railway workers and their families rapidly expanded the population. Rugby's population grew to nearly 8,000 by 1861. reaching nearly 17,000 by 1901. In the later half of the 19th century, Rugby also developed some local industries: Large-scale
cement A cement is a binder (material), binder, a substance used for construction that solidification, sets, hardens, and adheres to other materials to bind them together. Cement is seldom used on its own, but rather to bind sand and gravel (constru ...
production began in the town in 1862 when the Rugby Lias Lime & Cement Company Ltd was founded to take advantage of the locally available deposits of
Blue Lias The Blue Lias is a geological formation A geological formation, or formation, is a body of rock having a consistent set of physical characteristics (lithology) that distinguish it from adjacent bodies of rock, and which occupies a particular ...
limestone Limestone is a common type of carbonate In chemistry, a carbonate is a salt Salt is a mineral composed primarily of sodium chloride (NaCl), a chemical compound belonging to the larger class of Salt (chemistry), salts; salt in its na ...

limestone
. A factory producing
corset A corset is a support garment commonly worn to hold and train the torso into a desired shape, traditionally a smaller waist or larger bottom, for aesthetic or medical purposes (either for the duration of wearing it or with a more lasting effec ...

corset
s was opened in 1882, this survived until 1992, by which time it was making swimwear. In the 1890s and 1900s heavy
engineering Engineering is the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings. The discipline of engineering encompasses a broad range of more speciali ...

engineering
industries began to set up in Rugby, attracted by its central location and good transport links, causing the town to rapidly grow into a major industrial centre: Willans and Robinson were the first engineering firm to arrive in 1897, building steam engines to drive electrical generators, they were followed by
British Thomson-Houston British Thomson-Houston (BTH) was a British engineering and heavy industry, heavy industrial company, based at Rugby, Warwickshire, England and founded as a subsidiary of the General Electric Company (GE) of Schenectady, New York, USA. They were ...
in 1902, who manufactured electrical motors and generators. Both firms started producing
turbine A turbine ( or ) (from the Greek , ''tyrbē'', or Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', ...

turbine
s in 1904, and were in competition until both were united as part of
GEC GEC or Gec may refer to: Education * Gedo Education Committee, in Somalia * Glen Eira College, in Caulfield East, Victoria, Australia * Goa Engineering College, India * Government Engineering College (disambiguation) * Guild for Exceptional Ch ...
in 1969. Rugby expanded rapidly in the early decades of the 20th century as workers moved in. By the 1940s, the population of Rugby had grown to over 40,000, and then to over 50,000 by the 1960s. A
local board of health Local boards or local boards of health were local authorities in urban areas of England and Wales England and Wales () is a legal jurisdiction covering England and Wales, two of the four countries of the United Kingdom, parts of the United Kingdom ...
was established in Rugby in 1848, to provide the town with necessary infrastructure for its growth, such as paved roads, street lighting, clean drinking water and sewerage, this was converted into an
urban district council In England and Wales England and Wales () is a legal jurisdiction covering England and Wales, two of the four countries of the United Kingdom, parts of the United Kingdom. England and Wales forms the constitutional successor to the former King ...
in 1894. Rugby's status was upgraded to that of a
municipal borough Municipal boroughs were a type of local government Local government is a generic term for the lowest tiers of public administration Public administration is the implementation of government policy Public policy is a course of action c ...
in 1932, and its boundaries were expanded to incorporate the formerly separate villages of Bilton,
Hillmorton Hillmorton is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire Warwickshire (; abbreviated Warks) is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers ...
,
Brownsover Brownsover is a residential and commercial area of Rugby, Warwickshire in England, about miles north of the town centre. The area is named after the original hamlet (place), hamlet of Brownsover. Since 1960, the area has been subsumed by the exp ...
and
Newbold-on-Avon Newbold-on-Avon (usually shortened to just Newbold) is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby in Warwickshire, England, located around 1½ miles north-west of the town centre, it is adjacent to the River Avon, Warwickshire, River Avon from which t ...
which have become suburbs of the town.visionofbritain.org
In 1974 the municipal borough was merged with the
Rugby Rural District The Rugby Rural District was a former rural district in Warwickshire, England. The district covered the rural areas surrounding the town of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby, where the district council was based, but did not include Rugby itself which w ...
to form the present
Borough of Rugby The Borough of Rugby is a Non-metropolitan district, local government district with borough status in eastern Warwickshire, England. The borough comprises the town of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby where the council has its headquarters, and the rura ...
. In the postwar years, Rugby became well served by the
motorway A controlled-access highway is a type of highway A highway is any public or private road A road is a wide way leading from one place to another, typically one with a specially prepared surface which vehicles and bikes can use. ...
network, with the M1 and M6 merging close to the town.


Fame

Rugby is most famous for the invention of
rugby football Rugby football is a collective name for the family of team sports of rugby union and rugby league, as well as the earlier forms of football from which both games, as well as Australian rules football and gridiron football, evolved. The two v ...
, which is played throughout the world. The invention of the game is credited to
William Webb Ellis William Webb Ellis (24 November 1806 – 24 January 1872) was an English Anglican Anglicanism is a Western Christianity, Western Christian tradition that has developed from the practices, liturgy, and identity of the Church of England f ...

William Webb Ellis
, a
Rugby School Rugby School is a public school (English independent Independent or Independents may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Artist groups * Independents (artist group), a group of modernist painters based in the New Hope, Pennsylvania, a ...
pupil who, according to legend, broke the existing rules of football by picking up the ball and running with it at a match played in 1823. Although there is little evidence to support this story, the school is credited with codifying and popularising the sport. In 1845, three Rugby School pupils produced the first written rules of the "Rugby style of game". Rugby School is one of England's oldest and most prestigious public schools, and was the setting of
Thomas Hughes Thomas Hughes (20 October 182222 March 1896) was an English lawyer, judge, politician and author. He is most famous for his novel ''Tom Brown's School Days ''Tom Brown's School Days'' (sometimes written ''Tom Brown's Schooldays'', also ...
's semi-autobiographical masterpiece ''
Tom Brown's Schooldays ''Tom Brown's School Days'' (sometimes written ''Tom Brown's Schooldays'', also published under the titles ''Tom Brown at Rugby'', ''School Days at Rugby'', and ''Tom Brown's School Days at Rugby'') is an 1857 novel by Thomas Hughes. The stor ...
,'' published in 1857. A substantial part of the 2004 dramatisation of the novel, starring
Stephen Fry Stephen John Fry (born 24 August 1957) is an English actor, broadcaster, comedian, director and writer. He first came to prominence in the 1980s as one half of the comic double act Fry and Laurie Fry and Laurie are an English comedy double ...

Stephen Fry
, was filmed on location at Rugby School. Hughes later set up a colony in America for the younger sons of the English gentry, who could not inherit under the laws of primogeniture, naming the town Rugby. The town of
Rugby, Tennessee Rugby is an unincorporated community File:Entering Heinola, Minnesota.jpg, Sign at Heinola, Minnesota, Heinola, an unincorporated community in Otter Tail County, Minnesota An unincorporated area is a region not governed by a local municipal corpo ...
still exists. Rugby is a birthplace of the
jet engine A jet engine is a type of reaction engine A reaction engine is an engine or motor that produces thrust Thrust is a described quantitatively by . When a system expels or in one direction, the accelerated mass will cause a force of ...

jet engine
. In April 1937
Frank Whittle Air Commodore Sir Frank Whittle, (1 June 1907 – 9 August 1996) was an English engineer, inventor and Royal Air Force The Royal Air Force (RAF) is the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, comm ...
built and tested the world's first prototype jet engine at the
British Thomson-Houston British Thomson-Houston (BTH) was a British engineering and heavy industry, heavy industrial company, based at Rugby, Warwickshire, England and founded as a subsidiary of the General Electric Company (GE) of Schenectady, New York, USA. They were ...
(BTH) works in Rugby, and during 1936–41 based himself at
Brownsover Hall Brownsover Hall is a 19th-century mansion house in the old village of Brownsover, Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby, Warwickshire which has been converted for use as a hotel. It is a Grade II* listed building. Early History (1471-1850) The Manorialism, ...
on the outskirts, where he designed and developed early prototype engines. Much of his work was carried out at nearby
Lutterworth Lutterworth is a market town and Civil parishes in England, civil parish in the Harborough District, Harborough district of Leicestershire, England. The town is located in southern Leicestershire, close to the borders with Warwickshire and N ...
. Whittle is commemorated in Rugby by a
modern sculpture, ''The Burghers of Calais'', 1889, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C., cast 1943. Modern sculpture is generally considered to have begun with the work of Auguste Rodin, who is seen as the progenitor of modern sculpture. While Ro ...
near the town hall dating from 2005, made by Stephen Broadbent.
Holography Holography is a technique that enables a wavefront In physics, the wavefront of a time-varying field is the set () of all where the wave has the same of the sinusoid. The term is generally meaningful only for fields that, at each point, v ...

Holography
was invented in Rugby in 1947, by the
HungarianHungarian may refer to: * Hungary, a country in Central Europe * Kingdom of Hungary, state of Hungary, existing between 1000 and 1946 * Hungarians, ethnic groups in Hungary * Hungarian algorithm, a polynomial time algorithm for solving the assignmen ...

Hungarian
born inventor
Dennis Gabor Dennis Gabor ( hu, Gábor Dénes; , ; 5 June 1900 – 9 February 1979) was a HungarianHungarian may refer to: * Hungary, a country in Central Europe * Kingdom of Hungary, state of Hungary, existing between 1000 and 1946 * Hungarians, ethnic ...
, also while working at BTH. For this he later received the
Nobel Prize in Physics The Nobel Prize in Physics is a yearly award given by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences for those who have made the most outstanding contributions for mankind in the field of physics. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will ...
in 1971. In the 19th century, Rugby became famous for its once important
railway Rail transport (also known as train transport) is a means of transferring passengers and goods on wheeled vehicle A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine that transports people or cargo. Vehicles include wagons, bicycles, motor veh ...

railway
junction which was the setting for
Charles Dickens Charles John Huffam Dickens (; 7 February 1812 – 9 June 1870) was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world's best-known fictional characters and is regarded by many as the greatest novelist of the Victorian e ...

Charles Dickens
's story '' Mugby Junction''.


Rugby today

The modern town of Rugby is an amalgamation of the original town with the former villages of Bilton,
Hillmorton Hillmorton is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire Warwickshire (; abbreviated Warks) is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers ...
,
Brownsover Brownsover is a residential and commercial area of Rugby, Warwickshire in England, about miles north of the town centre. The area is named after the original hamlet (place), hamlet of Brownsover. Since 1960, the area has been subsumed by the exp ...
and
Newbold-on-Avon Newbold-on-Avon (usually shortened to just Newbold) is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby in Warwickshire, England, located around 1½ miles north-west of the town centre, it is adjacent to the River Avon, Warwickshire, River Avon from which t ...
which were incorporated into Rugby in 1932 when the town became a
borough A borough is an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, are generic names for ...
, all except Brownsover still have their former village centres. Rugby also includes the areas of
New Bilton New Bilton is a suburb of Rugby Rugby may refer to: Sports Rugby codes * Rugby football in various forms: ** Rugby league: 13 players per side *** Masters Rugby League *** Mod league *** Rugby league nines *** Rugby league sevens *** Touch (spor ...
, Overslade, Hillside and the partially constructed Houlton housing development. The spread of Rugby has nearly reached the villages of
Clifton-upon-Dunsmore Clifton-upon-Dunsmore is a village and civil parish In England, a civil parish is a type of administrative parish used for local government. It is a territorial designation which is the lowest tier of local government below districts and ...
, Cawston,
Dunchurch Dunchurch is a large village and civil parish on the south-western outskirts of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby in Warwickshire, England, approximately southwest of central Rugby. The civil parish which also includes the nearby hamlet of Toft, Warw ...

Dunchurch
and Long Lawford.


Town centre

The town centre is mostly Victorian era, Victorian and early 20th century, however a few much older buildings survive, along with some more modern developments. Rugby was described by Nikolaus Pevsner as 'Butterfieldtown'Allen, Geoff, (2000) ''Warwickshire Towns & Villages'', due to the number of buildings designed by William Butterfield in the 19th century, including much of Rugby School and the extension of . The main shopping area in Rugby is in the streets around the Clock Tower, two of which – High Street and Sheep Street – were pedestrianised in the 1980s. Until the 19th century, Rugby's urban area consisted of only Market Place, High Street, Sheep Street, Church Street, North Street and what is now Lawrence Sheriff Street. These centred on what is now the Clock Tower, which was built in 1887 on the site of an ancient cross. These streets still form the core of the town centre. In the Victorian era, Victorian and Edwardian eras several more shopping streets were added in order to cater for the growing town, including Albert Street and Regent Street, the latter of which was built in 1905, and was intended to be Rugby's main shopping street, although it never achieved this goal. The town centre has an indoor shopping centre called Rugby Central Shopping Centre which opened in 1979 (previously named The Clock Tower shopping centre). A street market (place), market is held in the town centre several days a week. In recent years several out-of-town retail centres have opened and expanded to the north of the town, including: Elliots Field Retail Park, Junction 1 Retail Park and Technology Drive.


Geography

Most of Rugby sits around above sea level on an irregular shaped plateau which is situated between the valleys of the River Avon (Warwickshire), River Avon and River Swift, Swift to the north, and the Rains Brook and River Leam to the south. During its modern growth, Rugby spread north across the Avon valley and enveloped the villages of Brownsover and Newbold, which are to the north of the Avon valley.OS Explorer Map 222 : Rugby & Daventry, Southam & Lutterworth: (1:25 000) The county boundary between Warwickshire,
Northamptonshire Northamptonshire (; abbreviated Northants.), archaically known as the County of Northampton, is a historic county in the East Midlands The East Midlands is one of nine official regions of England at the ITL 1 statistical regions of England ...

Northamptonshire
and
Leicestershire Leicestershire (; postal abbreviation Leics.) is a landlocked county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first publishe ...

Leicestershire
to the east of Rugby is defined by the A5 road (Great Britain), A5 road (the former
Watling Street Watling Street is a historic route in England England is a that is part of the . It shares land borders with to its west and to its north. The lies northwest of England and the to the southwest. England is separated from by the ...

Watling Street
) around east of Rugby town centre. The three counties meet at Dow Bridge; the point where the A5 road crosses the River Avon, forming a List of tripoints of English counties, tripoint. To the south-east of Rugby the county boundary with Northamptonshire is defined by the Rains Brook. Rugby is the easternmost town within Warwickshire (and the entire West Midlands (region), West Midlands region) ;Suburbs and districts Suburbs and districts of Rugby include: * Bilton *
Brownsover Brownsover is a residential and commercial area of Rugby, Warwickshire in England, about miles north of the town centre. The area is named after the original hamlet (place), hamlet of Brownsover. Since 1960, the area has been subsumed by the exp ...
*
Hillmorton Hillmorton is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire Warwickshire (; abbreviated Warks) is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers ...
*Hillside *Kingsway *
New Bilton New Bilton is a suburb of Rugby Rugby may refer to: Sports Rugby codes * Rugby football in various forms: ** Rugby league: 13 players per side *** Masters Rugby League *** Mod league *** Rugby league nines *** Rugby league sevens *** Touch (spor ...
*
Newbold-on-Avon Newbold-on-Avon (usually shortened to just Newbold) is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby in Warwickshire, England, located around 1½ miles north-west of the town centre, it is adjacent to the River Avon, Warwickshire, River Avon from which t ...
* Overslade ;Adjacent settlements Places adjoining or adjacent to Rugby, but not part of the town itself: * Cawston *
Clifton-upon-Dunsmore Clifton-upon-Dunsmore is a village and civil parish In England, a civil parish is a type of administrative parish used for local government. It is a territorial designation which is the lowest tier of local government below districts and ...
*
Dunchurch Dunchurch is a large village and civil parish on the south-western outskirts of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby in Warwickshire, England, approximately southwest of central Rugby. The civil parish which also includes the nearby hamlet of Toft, Warw ...

Dunchurch
* Houlton (partially constructed) *Long Lawford ;Nearby places *Nearby cities:
Birmingham Birmingham ( ) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Ro ...

Birmingham
,
Coventry Coventry ( or ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city in the West Midlands (county), West Midlands, England. It is on the River Sherbourne. Coventry has been a large settlement for centuries, although it was not founded and given its c ...

Coventry
and
Leicester Leicester is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Routled ...

Leicester
*Nearby towns: Bedworth, Daventry, Hinckley, Kenilworth, Leamington Spa,
Lutterworth Lutterworth is a market town and Civil parishes in England, civil parish in the Harborough District, Harborough district of Leicestershire, England. The town is located in southern Leicestershire, close to the borders with Warwickshire and N ...
, Northampton, Nuneaton, Southam and Warwick. *Nearby villages: Barby, Northamptonshire, Barby, Braunston, Brinklow, Catthorpe, Harborough Magna, Kilsby, Lilbourne, Monks Kirby, Newton, Warwickshire, Newton and Pailton.


Demographics

At the United Kingdom census, 2011, 2011 census, there were 70,628 residents in Rugby in 30,901 households, and the median age of Rugby residents was 39. In terms of ethnicity: *89% of Rugby residents were White British, White (Comprising 81% White British, 6.5% Other White, 1.1% White Irish, Irish and 0.1% Gypsy (term), Gypsy/Irish Travellers, Irish Traveller). *5.8% were British Asian, Asian (Comprising 3.6% British Indian, Indian, 0.8% British Pakistani, Pakistani, 0.2% British Bangladeshi, Bangladeshi 0.5% British Chinese, Chinese and 0.8% from another Asian background) *2.5% were Black British, Black (Comprising 1.2% African diaspora, African, 1.0% British African-Caribbean people, Caribbean and 0.3% other Black) *2.4% were Mixed (United Kingdom ethnicity category), Mixed. *0.1% were British Arab, Arab and 0.2% were from another ethnic group. In terms of religion, 62% of Rugby residents identified as Christianity, Christian, 25.6% said they had irreligion, no religion, 6.7% did not state any religion, 2.6% were Hinduism, Hindu, 1.6% were Islam, Muslim, 0.7% were Sikhism, Sikh, 0.3% were Buddhism, Buddhists, 0.1% were Judaism, Jewish and 0.3% were from another religion.


Politics and governance


National representation

From 1885 until 1983 Rugby was a constituency in itself, a status it regained in 2010. Rugby historically has been one of the Midlands' most marginal seats. From 1885 until 1924 Rugby was a marginal seat which changed hands between the Conservative Party (UK), Conservative and Liberal Party (UK), Liberal parties. From 1924 until 1942, the prominent Conservative David Margesson, 1st Viscount Margesson, David Margesson was Rugby's MP, his resignation triggered the 1942 Rugby by-election which was won by an independent trade unionist William Brown (trade unionist), William Brown, who retained the seat until losing it to James Johnson (British politician), James Johnson of the Labour Party (UK), Labour Party in 1950. From 1950 until 1983 Rugby was a Labour-Conservative marginal, with the Labour Party holding it for the majority of that period. In 1983 Rugby was joined with Kenilworth to become part of the parliamentary constituency of Rugby and Kenilworth (UK Parliament constituency), Rugby and Kenilworth. Between 1983 and 1997 Jim Pawsey was the Conservative Member of Parliament, losing in 1997 to Labour's Andy King (British politician), Andy King. At the 2005 United Kingdom general election, 2005 general election Jeremy Wright (politician), Jeremy Wright regained the seat for the Conservatives. Following the recommendations of the Boundary Commission for England, Warwickshire was allocated a sixth parliamentary seat. In the 2010 general election, the existing Rugby and Kenilworth constituency was abolished and split in two. A new Rugby (UK Parliament constituency), Rugby constituency was created, and a new constituency of Kenilworth and Southam (UK Parliament constituency), Kenilworth and Southam formed to the south of Rugby, and as a result the town regained its pre-1983 status of returning its own member of parliament, albeit with the addition of the Bulkington Ward from Nuneaton (UK Parliament constituency), Nuneaton. Jeremy Wright chose to stand for Kenilworth and Southam in the 2010 general election and was successful. Mark Pawsey, son of former Rugby MP Jim Pawsey, was elected for Rugby in 2010.


Local government

Rugby is administered by two local government in the United Kingdom, local authorities: Rugby (borough), Rugby Borough Council which covers Rugby and its surrounding countryside, and Warwickshire County Council. The two authorities are responsible for different aspects of local government. Rugby is an unparished area and so does not have its own town council. The
Borough of Rugby The Borough of Rugby is a Non-metropolitan district, local government district with borough status in eastern Warwickshire, England. The borough comprises the town of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby where the council has its headquarters, and the rura ...
was created in its current form in 1974, with the first elections held in 1973, since then, Rugby Borough Council has spent the majority of its time under no overall control, but since 2018 it has been controlled by the Conservative Party UK, Conservative Party (see Rugby Borough Council elections)


Public services

Rugby is covered by Warwickshire Police and Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service. Ambulance services are covered by the West Midlands Ambulance Service. The local hospital in Rugby is the Hospital of St. Cross, Rugby, Hospital of St. Cross which is part of the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust. A more extensive range of health services are provided at the University Hospital Coventry, some ten miles away.


Culture and recreation

The largest general purpose venue in Rugby is the Benn Hall which opened in 1961 as part of the town hall complex, Rugby has two theatres, a professional theatre the Macready Theatre, and the amateur Rugby Theatre, both in the town centre. A nine screen cinema run by Cineworld is located at a retail park north of the town centre. The Rugby Art Gallery, Museum and Library which opened in 2000, hosts various temporary art exhibitions, the main collection which is not on permanent display is the nationally renown "Rugby Collection of 20th century and Contemporary British Art" which includes 170 artworks by artists such as L. S. Lowry, Stanley Spencer, Paula Rego and Graham Sutherland. The museum hosts Roman artefacts excavated from the nearby Romano-British town of Tripontium, as well as an exhibition of the social history of Rugby. The building also houses the town's library. The Webb Ellis Rugby Football Museum also in the town centre also hosts rugby memorabilia. Since 2011 Rugby has held the annual Rugby Festival of Culture, which lasts for two or three weeks in June and July, and includes a wide-ranging program of music, theatre, arts and crafts and comedy. The poet Rupert Brooke was born and raised in Rugby, and he is commemorated in the town by a statue in Regent Place. In the 1960s, Clifton Hall at Rugby was owned by the music manager Reginald Calvert and became a centre of the Midlands rock music scene, with a number of Midlands bands such as The Fortunes, and the local band Pinkerton's Assorted Colours starting their careers there. In the 1980s the influential rock band Spacemen 3 was formed in Rugby by the local musicians Jason Pierce and Pete Kember. Following its demise in 1991, both musicians went on to form successful subsequent projects; Pierce formed the critically acclaimed band Spiritualized and Kember continued performing under the names Peter Kember, Sonic Boom/Spectrum. Other notable musical acts to emerge from Rugby include the 1970s pop band Jigsaw (British band), Jigsaw which was formed by musicians from Rugby and Coventry, the 2000s singer-songwriter James Morrison (singer), James Morrison, and more recently Emily Burns. There are two large urban parks in the town centre, one is Caldecott Park alongside the town hall, and on the edge of the town centre is the Whitehall Recreation Ground. Rugby has an indoor leisure centre, the ''Queen's Diamond Jubilee Centre'' which opened in 2013, replacing the older ''Ken Marriott Leisure Centre'', it is run by GLL a charitable social enterprise on behalf of the local council.


Sport

*Rugby has a number of rugby union teams including; the Rugby Lions, Rugby Welsh, Rugby St. Andrews RFC, Newbold-on-Avon RFC AEI (Rugby) Rugby Football Club and Old Laurentian RFC. *Rugby has two non-league Association football, football clubs, Rugby Town F.C., who play in the United Counties League Premier Division, and Rugby Borough F.C., formed in 2017, who were Leicestershire Senior League Division One Champions in 2017–18. *There are two golf courses near the town: Rugby Golf Club to the East, and Whitefields Golf Club to the South West. * The Rugby Lawn Tennis Club, is one of the oldest in the world, having been established in 1876.


Economy

For most of the 20th Century manufacturing was the largest employer in Rugby. Manufacturing employment peaked in the 1950s, and has gone into steady decline since, and service industries are now the largest source of employment. Rugby remains an
engineering Engineering is the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings. The discipline of engineering encompasses a broad range of more speciali ...

engineering
centre and has a long history of producing gas and steam
turbine A turbine ( or ) (from the Greek , ''tyrbē'', or Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', ...

turbine
s and electrical equipment. Engineering in Rugby has taken place under a myriad of different companies; it was established in the 1900s by
British Thomson-Houston British Thomson-Houston (BTH) was a British engineering and heavy industry, heavy industrial company, based at Rugby, Warwickshire, England and founded as a subsidiary of the General Electric Company (GE) of Schenectady, New York, USA. They were ...
(BTH) and Willans & Robinson, which later became parts of Associated Electrical Industries (AEI) and English Electric respectively, until both were united as part of the General Electric Company (GEC) in the late-1960s, which itself merged with Alstom in 1989. Most of the engineering works in Rugby were based in the Avon valley area north of the railway station, since the 1980s much of the engineering works have closed with their land sold off for housing and commercial development, however engineering still continues in Rugby on a smaller scale under the auspices of GE Power Conversion, which produces large electric motors, and services and manufactures steam turbines. In 2019 the Rugby site was threatened with closure, but was saved following an order for motors from the Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom), Ministry of Defence, after the House of Commons Defence Select Committee, decided that closing the site would lead to a ‘loss of sovereign capability and security’. Further afield, within the Rugby (borough), Rugby borough is the Rolls-Royce plc, Rolls-Royce engineering works near Ansty, Warwickshire, Ansty. This is nearer to
Coventry Coventry ( or ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city in the West Midlands (county), West Midlands, England. It is on the River Sherbourne. Coventry has been a large settlement for centuries, although it was not founded and given its c ...

Coventry
than Rugby. Rugby is also a centre of laser manufacturing: This was started by the local firm JK Lasers, which was founded in 1972. In 1982 JK Lasers merged with Lumonics of Canada and was for a time one of the largest industrial laser companies in the world. Following takeovers and mergers, the JK Lasers brand name disappeared in 2015, and it is now part of SPI Lasers, a subsidiary of the Trumpf company. In 2018, SPI Lasers announced that their manufacturing site at Rugby was to be doubled in size. A second laser manufacturing firm in Rugby is Litron Lasers, which was established in 1997. Another major industry in Rugby is
cement A cement is a binder (material), binder, a substance used for construction that solidification, sets, hardens, and adheres to other materials to bind them together. Cement is seldom used on its own, but rather to bind sand and gravel (constru ...
making; This industry started on a small scale locally in the early 19th century, but began on a large scale in the 1860s when the Rugby Cement company was founded, making cement from the local Jurassic
Blue Lias The Blue Lias is a geological formation A geological formation, or formation, is a body of rock having a consistent set of physical characteristics (lithology) that distinguish it from adjacent bodies of rock, and which occupies a particular ...
limestone at
New Bilton New Bilton is a suburb of Rugby Rugby may refer to: Sports Rugby codes * Rugby football in various forms: ** Rugby league: 13 players per side *** Masters Rugby League *** Mod league *** Rugby league nines *** Rugby league sevens *** Touch (spor ...
. The current cement works at Rugby has the largest cement kiln in the UK, capable of producing 1.8 million tonnes of cement a year. The current plant was opened in 2000, having been rebuilt and substantially enlarged in the late-1990s, upon its opening other Rugby Cement plants at Southam and Rochester, Kent, Rochester were closed, with all production moved to the enlarged Rugby plant. Rugby Cement was taken over in 2000 and is now owned by the Mexican firm Cemex, who moved their UK headquarters to Rugby in 2018. The American fashion retailer Gap Inc. has had its UK headquarters and distribution centre in Rugby since 2002, as does the construction firm Morgan Sindall Group, Morgan Sindall, and the historic legal firm Brethertons. In addition a number of trade, professional and charitable organisations have headquarters in Rugby, including the Institution of Chemical Engineers, the Institution of Lighting Professionals, the Master Locksmiths Association, the Auto-Cycle Union, the Oral Health Foundation, and the development charity Practical Action. Since the 1980s several large industrial estates have been built to the north, and Warehouse, warehousing, distribution and light industry have become major employers. This is due to the town's close proximity to the M6 motorway (Junction 1) and M1 (Junction 19), at the heart of the UK's motorway network. In 2017 nearly half of Warwickshire's businesses in the ‘Transport and storage’ sector were in Rugby. In 2017 Hermes Group, Hermes opened its 'Midlands Super Hub' parcel delivery depot at the Rugby Gateway development to the north of the town, which is the largest of its type in the UK. To the east of Rugby is the large Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal (DIRFT), which opened in the 1990s; although this is across the county border in Northamptonshire, it is closest to Rugby. Tourism is also important to the town's economy, especially related to
Rugby football Rugby football is a collective name for the family of team sports of rugby union and rugby league, as well as the earlier forms of football from which both games, as well as Australian rules football and gridiron football, evolved. The two v ...
. In 2017 the average annual workplace wage in the Rugby borough was £29,059; above the Warwickshire (£28,513) and UK (£28,296) averages. One of the last links to Rugby's rural past was the cattle market held near the railway station, and earlier in the "Market Place" in the old centre of Rugby since medieval times. The market near the railway station was closed in late 2008 and the site has been redeveloped into housing, a hotel and a Tesco store as part of a wider scheme of work in the station area.


Notable buildings and landmarks

One of the most notable landmarks around Rugby was, until August 2007, the Rugby Radio Station, a large radio transmitting station just to the east of the town. The station was opened in 1926, at its height in the 1950s it was the largest radio transmitting station in the world, with a total of 57 radio transmitters, covering an area of 1600 acres. Traffic slowly dwindled from the 1980s onwards, and the site was closed between 2003 and 2007. Several of the masts were decommissioned and demolished by explosives in 2004, although a few, including four of the biggest masts remained until 2007. (Firing the explosive charges was delayed by rabbits gnawing the wires). The remaining four 'tall' masts were demolished on the afternoon of 2 August 2007 with no prior publicity. The site is now being developed as a new housing development known as Houlton Rugby Cement works, is to the west of the town. The main tower of the cement works stands at tall, and can be seen from as far away as the Cotswolds and the Malvern Hills in Worcestershire. The landmark is controversial; in 2005 it came in the top ten of a poll of buildings people would like to see demolished on the Channel 4 television series Demolition (television), Demolition. In October 2006, the owners of the Rugby Cement works, Cemex, were fined £400,000 for excessive pollution after a court case brought by the Environment Agency. The town has statues of three famous locals: Rupert Brooke,
Thomas Hughes Thomas Hughes (20 October 182222 March 1896) was an English lawyer, judge, politician and author. He is most famous for his novel ''Tom Brown's School Days ''Tom Brown's School Days'' (sometimes written ''Tom Brown's Schooldays'', also ...
and
William Webb Ellis William Webb Ellis (24 November 1806 – 24 January 1872) was an English Anglican Anglicanism is a Western Christianity, Western Christian tradition that has developed from the practices, liturgy, and identity of the Church of England f ...

William Webb Ellis
. The Rupert Brooke statue is situated at the forked junction of Regent Street on the green and commemorates his contribution to poetry. Thomas Hughes' statue stands in the gardens of the Temple Reading Rooms (the central library of Rugby school) on Barby Road. Since England won the Rugby World Cup in 2003, the William Webb Ellis statue outside Rugby School is one of the most visited parts of the town. , in the town centre, is Rugby's original Church of England parish church. A church has stood on the site since 1140. The oldest surviving part of the church is the 22 metre high west tower which bears strong resemblance to a
castle A castle is a type of fortification, fortified structure built during the Middle Ages predominantly by the nobility or royalty and by Military order (monastic society), military orders. Scholars debate the scope of the word ''castle'', but u ...

castle
turret, the west tower was possibly built during the reign of King Henry III of England, Henry III (1216–1272) to serve a defensive as well as religious role, and is Rugby's oldest building. The church has other artefacts of medieval Rugby including the 13th-century parish chest, and a medieval baptismal font, font. The church was extensively re-built and expanded in the 19th century, designed by William Butterfield. The expanded church included a new east tower, added in 1895 which has a spire high. The church is Grade II* listed. Very unusually, both of the church towers have Change ringing, ringable bells, the main peal of bells (all cast in 1896 by Whitechapel Bell Foundry, Mears & Stainbank,
London London is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowerc ...

London
) being located in the eastern tower, and the old peal (all cast in 1711 by Joseph Smith of Edgbaston) located in the western tower. Rugby's main Roman Catholic church is St Marie's Church, Rugby, St Marie's on Dunchurch Road. It is one of the town's most well-known landmarks as it is quite dominant on the skyline. The church was first opened in 1847, designed by Pugin in the Gothic Revival architecture, Gothic revival style, it was enlarged in 1864, and in 1872 the current tall and slender spire was added, which is nearly 200 feet (61 metres) tall. The church is also Grade II* listed. The buildings of
Rugby School Rugby School is a public school (English independent Independent or Independents may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Artist groups * Independents (artist group), a group of modernist painters based in the New Hope, Pennsylvania, a ...
are major landmarks mostly dating from the 18th and 19th century with some early 20th Century additions. The oldest buildings are the Old Quad Buildings and the School House the oldest parts of which date from 1748, but were mostly built between 1809 and 1813 by Henry Hakewill, these are Grade II* listed buildings in Rugby (borough), are Grade II* listed. Most of the current landmark buildings date from the Victorian era and were designed by William Butterfield: The most notable of these is the Chapel, dating from 1872, which is Grade I listed. Butterfield's New Quad buildings are Grade II* listed and date from 1867–85. The War Memorial chapel designed by Sir Charles Nicholson, 2nd Baronet, Charles Nicholson is a later addition dating from 1922. Rugby's Clock Tower in Market Place is one of the town's best known landmarks, which traditionally marks the centre of Rugby. The clock tower dates from 1887, and was built to celebrate Queen Victoria's jubilee. It is built of Derby Dale stone, and was designed by Goodacres of Leicester. It is grade II listed.


Places of interest

Places of interest in the town include: *The Rugby School Museum, which has audio-visual displays about the history of Rugby School and of the town. *The combined Rugby Art Gallery and Museum, art gallery and museum. The art gallery contains a nationally recognised collection of contemporary art. The museum contains, amongst other things, Roman Empire, Roman artefacts dug up from the nearby Roman settlement of Tripontium. The facility became the physical home of the World Rugby Hall of Fame in 2016. *The The James Gilbert Rugby Football Museum, Webb Ellis Rugby Football Museum, where traditional Rugby football, rugby balls are handmade. It contains much rugby football memorabilia. *The Benn Hall, a conference, seminar, exhibition and party venue. * Newbold Quarry Park, nature reserve *Swift Valley Nature Reserve Places of interest around Rugby include: *Brandon Marsh nature reserve, Brandon Marsh *
Brownsover Hall Brownsover Hall is a 19th-century mansion house in the old village of Brownsover, Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby, Warwickshire which has been converted for use as a hotel. It is a Grade II* listed building. Early History (1471-1850) The Manorialism, ...
*Coombe Abbey *Coton House *
Dunchurch Dunchurch is a large village and civil parish on the south-western outskirts of Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby in Warwickshire, England, approximately southwest of central Rugby. The civil parish which also includes the nearby hamlet of Toft, Warw ...

Dunchurch
– Historic village *Draycote Water – Reservoir and nature reserve *Oxford Canal *Ryton Organic Gardens *Stanford Hall, Leicestershire, Stanford Hall


Transport


Road

Rugby is situated near to several major trunk routes including the M1, M6 and M45 motorways, and the A5 road (Great Britain), A5, A14 road (England), A14 and A45 roads. Other main roads in the town include the A426 road, the A428 road and the Rugby Western Relief Road, linking the A45 with the Leicester Road, that connects with junction 1 of the M6. In 2010, a short local bypass (road), bypass was opened; it was the first part of the Rugby Western Relief Road. It runs from the A428 road, A428 (Lawford Road), along the edge of the built-up area to the A4071 road, A4071 (road from Rugby through Bilton and Cawston), a little west of Cawston; it takes through heavy traffic off suburban housing roads such as Addison Road. On 10 September 2010, the final part of Rugby's Western Relief Road was opened. The road runs from Potsford Dam near Cawston, through the Lawford Road and ending at Newbold Road, near the Avon Valley School. The initial estimated cost was projected at £36.6 million, while the final figure was in excess of £60 million.


Bus

Buses run to Coventry, Southam, Leamington Spa, Daventry, Leicester and Northampton, as well as serving the major estates of the town on a regular basis. Stagecoach in Warwickshire have a depot in the town.


Railways

Rugby railway station Rugby railway station serves the town of Rugby Rugby may refer to: Sports Rugby codes * Rugby football in various forms: ** Rugby league: 13 players per side *** Masters Rugby League *** Mod league *** Rugby league nines *** Rugby league sev ...

Rugby railway station
is served by the West Coast Main Line and has frequent regular services to Euston railway station, London Euston, Birmingham New Street railway station, Birmingham New Street, Stafford railway station, Stafford and Crewe railway station, Crewe. There are also some infrequent services between Rugby and Glasgow Central railway station, Glasgow Central, the North West England, North West of England, Shrewsbury railway station, Shrewsbury, Chester railway station, Chester and Holyhead railway station, Holyhead. Rugby has had a railway station since 1838, when the
London and Birmingham Railway The London and Birmingham Railway (L&BR) was an early railway company in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and ...
was opened, though the present station dates from 1885. Rugby station used to be served by lines which have now been closed, including to Midland Counties Railway, Leicester, Rugby to Leamington Line, Leamington Spa and Rugby and Stamford railway, Peterborough. These were closed in the 1960s as part of the Beeching cuts.Elliott, Peter H (1985). Rugby's Railway Heritage. . Between 1899 and 1969, Rugby had a second station; Rugby Central railway station, Rugby Central station on the former Great Central Main Line, which had services to Marylebone railway station, London Marylebone to the south and Leicester Central railway station, Leicester, Nottingham Victoria railway station, Nottingham and Sheffield Victoria railway station, Sheffield to the north. The station and line were closed in the 1960s as part of the Beeching cuts. British Railways' Rugby Locomotive Testing Station, locomotive testing centre was in Rugby. Warwickshire County Council have proposed a new station; Rugby Parkway railway station, Rugby Parkway station be built on the Northampton Loop Line, south-east of the existing station, serving the
Hillmorton Hillmorton is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire Warwickshire (; abbreviated Warks) is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers ...
area of the town, and the new development at Houlton. The station is to be built in between the current edge of town and DIRFT to accommodate for the future expansion of the town where 6,200 homes are planned to be built over a 15 to 20 year period. No date, however, has been given for the opening of this station.


Air

There are direct railway links to the nearest major airport Birmingham Airport. The smaller Coventry Airport is also nearby.


Canal

The Oxford Canal from near Coventry to Oxford runs around Rugby, through the Newbold-on-Avon, Newbold,
Brownsover Brownsover is a residential and commercial area of Rugby, Warwickshire in England, about miles north of the town centre. The area is named after the original hamlet (place), hamlet of Brownsover. Since 1960, the area has been subsumed by the exp ...
and
Hillmorton Hillmorton is a suburb of Rugby, Warwickshire Warwickshire (; abbreviated Warks) is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers ...
areas, although it does not come close to the town centre. The canal was opened in 1790, as a winding contour canal, but was straightened out in the 1830s. Notable features of the canal locally are the long tunnel at Newbold, and the flight of Hillmorton#Hillmorton Locks, locks at Hillmorton, which are the busiest flight of locks on the national canal network.


Notable residents


Born in Rugby

*Chris Adams (wrestler), Chris Adams (1955–2001), wrestler *Neil Adams (judoka), Neil Adams (born 1958), judoka *Melanie Astles, (born 1982) French aerobatic champion *David Barby (1943–2012), antiques expert *Ian Bell (born 1982), cricketer *Laura Bettinson (born 1987), singer-songwriter *Andrew Bloxam (1801–1878), clergyman and naturalist *Matthew Bloxam (1805–1888), antiquarian and archaeologist *Arthur Bostrom (born 1955), actor *Rupert Brooke (1887–1915), poet *Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw (born 1983), comedic writer *Jim Dewes (born 1957), cricketer *Walter Gilbert (sculptor), Walter Gilbert (1871–1946), sculptor *Herbert Haddock (1861–1946), ship captain *M. John Harrison, Michael John Harrison (born 1945), writer *Peter Kember (born 1965), musician (Spacemen 3, Spectrum) *Richard Lindon (1816–1887), leatherworker, inventor *Norman Lockyer (1836–1920), scientist, discovered the gas helium *Rose Macaulay (1881–1958), writer *Katharine Merry (born 1974), sprinter *James Morrison (singer), James Morrison (born 1984), singer-songwriter *James Petiver (1665–1718), botanist *Jason Pierce (born 1965), musician (Spiritualized, Spacemen 3) *Tim Pigott-Smith (1946–2017), actor *Peter Rogers (businessman), Peter Rogers (1947-2020), businessman *Sam Ruddock (born 1990), track and field athlete *
Lawrence Sheriff Lawrence Sheriff (or Sheriffe) (c. 1515 or 1516 – September 1567) was an Elizabethan The Elizabethan era is the epoch in the Tudor period of the history of England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I (1558–1603). Historians often depict ...
(c. 1510–1567), grocer, philanthropist *Barbara Stocking (born 1951), public servant *Lauren Taylor (golfer), Lauren Taylor (born 1994), golfer *Chris Wakelin (born 1992), snooker player *Peter Whalley (priest), Peter Whalley (1722–1791), clergyman, academic and schoolmaster *Mona Wilson (1872–1954), civil servant and author *Arnold Wolfendale (1927–2020), Astronomer Royal *Albert Wratislaw (1822–1892), clergyman and scholar


Lived or lives in Rugby

*Joseph Addison (1672-1719), writer and politician *Matthew Arnold (1822–1888), poet *Thomas Arnold (1795–1842), educator *Emily Burns (born 1994), singer-songwriter *Lewis Carroll (1832–1898), writer *Neville Chamberlain (1869–1940), politician *Paul Dirac (1902-1984), physicist *
William Webb Ellis William Webb Ellis (24 November 1806 – 24 January 1872) was an English Anglican Anglicanism is a Western Christianity, Western Christian tradition that has developed from the practices, liturgy, and identity of the Church of England f ...

William Webb Ellis
(1806–1872), clergyman, claimed inventor of rugby football *Reginald Foort (1893–1980), organist *
Dennis Gabor Dennis Gabor ( hu, Gábor Dénes; , ; 5 June 1900 – 9 February 1979) was a HungarianHungarian may refer to: * Hungary, a country in Central Europe * Kingdom of Hungary, state of Hungary, existing between 1000 and 1946 * Hungarians, ethnic ...
(1900–1979), physicist *
Thomas Hughes Thomas Hughes (20 October 182222 March 1896) was an English lawyer, judge, politician and author. He is most famous for his novel ''Tom Brown's School Days ''Tom Brown's School Days'' (sometimes written ''Tom Brown's Schooldays'', also ...
(1822–1896), writer *Billy J. Kramer (born 1943), singer *Unity Mitford (1914–1948), socialite *John Moultrie (poet), John Moultrie (1799–1874), clergyman and poet *Kevin Painter (born 1967), darts player *Peter Purves (born 1939), television presenter *Salman Rushdie (born 1947), novelist *Lesley Souter (1917– 1981) first female electrical engineering student at the University of Glasgow *Franco Wanyama (1968–2019), boxer *
Frank Whittle Air Commodore Sir Frank Whittle, (1 June 1907 – 9 August 1996) was an English engineer, inventor and Royal Air Force The Royal Air Force (RAF) is the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, comm ...
(1907–1996), inventor *Clem Wilson (1875–1944), cricketer *Johnny Williams (boxer), Johnny Williams (1926–2007), boxer


Education


Primary

;State schools *Abbots Farm Junior School *Abbots Farm Infant School *Bawnmore Infant School *Bilton Infant School *Bilton CE Junior School *Boughton Leigh Infant *Boughton Leigh Junior *Brownsover Community Infant School *Cawston Grange Primary School *Clifton-upon-Dunsmore Primary School *Eastlands Primary School *English Martyrs Catholic Primary School *Henry Hinde Infant School *Henry Hinde Junior School *Hillmorton Primary School *Northlands Primary School *Oakfield Primary Academy *Paddox Primary School *Riverside Academy *Rokeby Infant School *Rokeby Junior School *Rugby Free Primary School *St Andrew's Benn CE Primary School *St Gabriels's CofE Academy *St Maries RC Infant School *St Maries RC Junior School *St Matthews Bloxham CE Primary School ;Independent *Crescent School, Rugby, Crescent School


Secondary

;Comprehensive Schools *Ashlawn School *Avon Valley School *Bilton School *Harris Church of England Academy *Rugby Free Secondary School *Houlton Schoolhttp://www.houltonschool.org.uk/ ;Grammar schools *
Lawrence Sheriff School Lawrence Sheriff School is a boys' grammar school in Rugby, Warwickshire, Rugby, Warwickshire, England. The school is named after Lawrence Sheriff, the Elizabethan era, Elizabethan founder of Rugby School. The school's name is often shortened to ...
(for boys) *Rugby High School for Girls *Ashlawn School – Partially Selective ;Independent schools *
Rugby School Rugby School is a public school (English independent Independent or Independents may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Artist groups * Independents (artist group), a group of modernist painters based in the New Hope, Pennsylvania, a ...
*Princethorpe College


Further education

*Warwickshire College Group#Rugby College, Rugby College – which is a part of the Warwickshire College Group. *Percival Guildhouse - Independent adult education charity.


Former schools and colleges

*Bishop Wulstan School *Hillbrow School *William Temple (archbishop)#Legacy, William Temple College (1954–71): an Anglican theological college.


Local media


Radio

The local radio stations are: *BBC Coventry & Warwickshire: 104.0 FM *Free Radio Coventry & Warwickshire (formally known as Mercia Sound and Mercia FM): 97.0FM *Capital Mid-Counties: 107.1 FM


Written media

The main local newspapers are: *The ''Rugby Advertiser'' *The ''Rugby Observer'' *The ''Warwickshire Telegraph''; a localised sub-edition of the ''Coventry Telegraph''.


Television news

The Rugby area is covered on regional TV News by: *Midlands Today, BBC Midlands Today *ITV News Central


Twin towns

Rugby is Town twinning, twinned with: * Évreux, France (since 1959) * Rüsselsheim, Germany (since 1977)


See also

*Rugby, North Dakota *
Rugby, Tennessee Rugby is an unincorporated community File:Entering Heinola, Minnesota.jpg, Sign at Heinola, Minnesota, Heinola, an unincorporated community in Otter Tail County, Minnesota An unincorporated area is a region not governed by a local municipal corpo ...
*Rugby, New South Wales , Rugby, New South Wales, Australia


References


Further reading

* * * *


External links


Rugby Borough Council
{{Authority control Rugby, Warwickshire, Towns in Warwickshire Railway towns in England Market towns in Warwickshire Unparished areas in Warwickshire Borough of Rugby