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Home > News > Congleton bid for Guinness rugby marathon record
Your News Congleton bid for Guinness rugby marathon record

WHILE most rugby enthusiasts are enjoying a precious few weeks of rest and relaxation before another season begins, at Congleton RUFC in Cheshire events are moving in a completely opposite direction.

They are currently into the final preparations for a massive undertaking which, if successful, will put the 150-year-old club into the Guinness Book of World Records for playing in the longest continuous game of rugby ever played.

That record is currently held by two women’s teams from Williams College and Keene State College in Massachusetts, USA and stands at a daunting 24 hours, 5 minutes and 15 seconds – a remarkable effort that is bound to test the Congleton teams to the limit, even with five minutes rest after every hour of play!

Considering how many games of rugby are decided in the last quarter as fatigue starts to kick in, the 22 players in each side will be delighted to be still standing on Saturday (July 23) at 5pm as the milestone comes into touching distance.

Kick-off at 5pm on Friday evening launches not only the World Record bid, but also a full programme of events which will ensure that the players always have active support on the sidelines in addition to the camera crew and official witnesses who must scrutinise every minute of play go ensure strict compliance with the Guinness regulations.

One of those activities will be an O2 Touch rugby event for Over 17s on Saturday from 10am to 2pm which will be part of a nationwide initiative by the RFU to involve people in the non-contact version of the game during the close season and attract players and newcomers to the recreational, fun side of the game.

Touch rugby has been steadily emerging from the shadows of the 15-a-side code into a stand-alone recreational sport for some time and this summer, thanks to a major initiative sponsored by O2 and the Rugby Football Union, the non-contact version of the game is set to spread its wings, with Congleton one of 400 clubs supporting the programme.

Children’s fairground attractions, a tag rugby style event and a Teddy Bears’ Picnic will ensure that the junior members of the family will be well catered for, while food and refreshments will also be available, to the accompaniment on Saturday evening (5 to 6pm) of Foden Brass Band, who will hopefully have something celebratory in their repertoire!

While a place in the record books is the Congleton target, their efforts also have a wider dimension. They will be raising funds for ‘The Mali Initiative’ - a catalyst for change in the West African nation - and for The Mercian Benevolent Charity, which supports soldiers past and present in the regiment.

“This is such a great thing for the rugby club to attempt and I’m very confident we will achieve it.” Said Project Manager Andy Jones: “The day will be a really good event, with plenty to do for all ages and everyone is welcome to come and support the teams.”

Advance sponsors of the event include Flowcrete, DpSportswear, Synergy Audio and Visual Solutions, BackOffice Support Services, Greenoaks, L.Thompson Optometrist, SES, The Queens Head, Fullers and New Life Church, but further support of the two charities can be achieved by contacting

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