Alumni engagement and philanthropy


Rugby Player


04 October 2023

The Rugby World Cup has grabbed the attention of sports fans around the globe – and now you can play a part in developing the next generation of top talent.

Queen’s University of Belfast Rugby Football Club, formed in 1869, is the second oldest club on the island of Ireland and has a proud heritage, including having ninety-one fully capped Irish Internationals and twenty-two British and Irish Lions amongst its alumni.

Now the club is urging alumni, friends and supporters to get behind its new fundraising appeal: “Back 10”.

The campaign asks for a donation of £10 per month to provide opportunities for players of all levels to take part in the sport at Queen’s. As you watch the World Cup, you may hear referees ordering a side “back ten” – an instruction to move 10 metres back when a penalty is awarded against them. We are using this line as a prompt to our supporters, encouraging them to back us with a £10 donation.

Queen’s Rugby Development Officer David Chambers said: “The generosity of friends and alumni over the years has built today’s club and enables us to nurture tomorrow’s champions.

“One of the most significant developments in recent years has been the introduction of the Rugby Academy and the development of the Jack Kyle Foundation.

“This year we celebrate 21 years of the Jack Kyle Foundation which has enabled all our players, from those playing socially to those representing the University at national and international level, to enjoy the game at Queen’s. Regular donations to the Jack Kyle Foundation from supporters have made this possible.”

Today Queen’s Rugby Club fields seven teams: four men's team, two ladies' teams and a burgeoning tag rugby team.

The University’s First XV are now competing against top clubs in the All Ireland League 1B level. Queen’s Ladies have also enjoyed huge success, with former players Diane Ramsey and Rachel McIlroy now playing for Ulster.

Queen’s Fresher Meabh Clenaghan, another Ulster player and Irish U20 international, has been recognised as an Elite Athlete, one of the top twenty sports people in the University.

With the support of Queen’s Sport, the Jack Kyle Foundation provides a range of coaching and development services to enable students to achieve the highest possible sporting standards whilst pursuing their academic careers.

But David explained that costs are rising: “Everyone involved with rugby, and indeed with any sport, will appreciate the expense of fielding a team and providing players with the highest quality sports development opportunities, which is why we are asking for support for the ‘Back 10’ appeal.

“The success of the Queen’s Rugby Academy and Jack Kyle Foundation is reflected, for example, in the accomplishments of three current players winning World Cup U20 Silver Medals this year. Most importantly it has ensured that we provide opportunities for hundreds of young players to play the game they love at Queen’s. A small, regular donation, to the ‘Back 10’ appeal will make a huge difference and help us plan the development of rugby in the coming years.”

QUBRFC alumni and friends may also want to reflect on some of the greatest number 10s to have ever played for Queen’s including- George Cromey, David Humphries and Gareth Steenson.

The most famous number 10 of course was the great Jack Kyle, voted Ireland’s greatest ever player in 2002, part of Ireland’s golden generation that delivered the first Grand Slam in 1948 and two Five Nations crowns 1949 and 51.  

To support Queen’s Rugby and the work of the Jack Kyle Foundation please donate to the “Back 10” Campaign


Back to Main News 

Top of Page