TOP BAR - Fixtures

Northampton Saints directors stepping down after long service

Northampton Saints plc, the parent company of Aviva Premiership club Northampton Saints, has today announced that two of the club’s directors are stepping down at the end of August.

Jon Raphael and Murray Holmes have been two important figures in the history of the Saints. As part of the ‘Gang of Seven’ consortium in 1988 they were instrumental in setting the club on the path to where it is today at the top end of English club rugby.

This included the appointment of English rugby’s first ever paid administrator, Barrie Corless, and entrenching a relationship with Keith Barwell that would ultimately see him provide funding during the transition to professionalism and then establish the Saints as the only club in the country to stand on its own two feet financially, year in, year out, for nearly two decades.

As a player Raphael was club captain in 1983/84 and played 159 times for the Saints first team. He sat on the bench for England between 1975 and 1981, went on two overseas tours and represented the Barbarians before injury brought a premature end to his career in 1984.

A former senior partner at DFA Law, Holmes has been a respected member of the Northampton business community for many years and played an important role on the club’s committee and then subsequently the board of directors.

Both Raphael and Holmes have each had the honour of serving as Saints president for a two-year spell, and are among a handful of people to be made life members of the club.

Saints chairman Tony Hewitt paid tribute to their dedication to making the club what it is today.

"Without men like Jon and Murray it is conceivable that the Saints would not be where it is today," he said. "As part of the Gang of Seven they turned the Saints around and set us on the path to being one of the most innovative clubs in the country. They had the vision to appoint the first professional rugby administrator anywhere in English club rugby, and the willingness to welcome the investment and input of Keith Barwell, buying into his belief that a club can be both financially self-sustaining and successful on the pitch.

"We can look at the likes of the teams we were playing in the league back in 1988, clubs such as Rosslyn Park, Liverpool St Helens and Headingley, and imagine that without Jon, Murray, and the rest of the consortium we could have followed them into the lower reaches of the sport, far from where we are now.

"They have earned our thanks and best wishes for the future."
 

Latest News

Sonatane Takulua expecting big things from Newcastle Falcons this season

Sonatane Takulua believes unity and a collective purpose, combined with an improved playing pool, can help propel Newcastle Falcons up…

Sonatane Takulua

Wasps name team for first pre-season fixture against Ulster

Dai Young has named a 26-man squad to take on Ulster Rugby at Kingspan Stadium in the first pre-season fixture…

Anglo-Welsh Cup 2017-18 launched

WORCESTER WARRIORS have the honour of hosting the opening match in this year’s Anglo-Welsh Cup on Friday 3 November, when…

Leicester Tigers win the Anglo Welsh Cup

Ally Hogg pleased by Newcastle Falcons’ early progress

Ally Hogg believes Newcastle Falcons are well set to attack the new Aviva Premiership season after a double dose of…

Ally Hogg

Topsy Ojo relishing Exiles return to Aviva Premiership Rugby action at HQ

Topsy Ojo believes there could be no more fitting way for London Irish to announce their return as an Aviva…

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua sees Philadelphia trip as a ‘great opportunity’

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua insists his side’s September clash with Saracens in Philadelphia will be no holiday for the players,…

Sonatane Takulua

Harlequins statement: Luke Wallace and Jonas Mikalcius

Harlequins can confirm today (Tuesday 15th August) that flanker Luke Wallace dislocated his hip during the pre-season friendly against London…

Luke Wallace

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

London Irish will host Bath Rugby at the Madejski Stadium in the opening round of the Anglo-Welsh Cup on Saturday…

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

HITZ graduate secures first full time job after being inspired by Premiership Rugby final

A teenager from Leigh who overcame a troubled home life and tackled confidence and communication issues thanks to Premiership Rugby…

Lucy Neal

Nick Kennedy delighted with first pre-season hit-out for London Irish

London Irish director of rugby Nick Kennedy is looking forward to seeing his side build on Saturday’s thrilling contest against…

Nick Kennedy

Philadelphia bound Nick Civetta can’t wait for American Series challenge with Newcastle Falcons

NICK CIVETTA HAS had an unlikely path to the top level but as he prepares to embark on his second season…

Nick Civetta

Demetri Catrakilis relishing chance to reunite with old friend Tim Swiel

Harlequins fly-half Demetri Catrakilis has revealed he is ready to join forces with  compatriot and old acquaintance Tim Swiel – insisting…

Worcester Warriors to use number of players in Hartpury test

Warriors will look to use up to 37 players during their fixture against Hartpury College this Saturday in their first…

GJ van Velze

Emergency Services workers invited to London Double Header

Saracens are offering up to eight free tickets to any member of the London Emergency Services for the upcoming London…

London Double Header

Newcastle Falcons teams for double-header v Doncaster and Nottingham

Three-time French title winner Maxime Mermoz is among the Newcastle Falcons players making their debuts in Saturday’s home double header…

Nili Latu

Lewis and Phillips to make Bath Rugby debuts against Bristol

Josh Lewis and James Phillips will make their Bath Rugby debuts in the Club’s first pre-season game against Bristol Rugby…

James Phillips

London Irish name side for pre-season opener

London Irish have named a 29-man squad for tomorrow’s Cunningham Duncombe Series against Harlequins at Hazelwood, with seven summer signings…

Greig Tonks

Nick Civetta primed for Newcastle Falcons’ double header this Saturday

Having spent the summer helping his country qualify for the Rugby World Cup American lock Nick Civetta is keen to…

Nick Civetta

Chris Robshaw commits his future to Harlequins

Harlequins is thrilled to announce today (Thursday 10th August) that England back row Chris Robshaw has re-signed with the Club…

Chris Robshaw