CURUFC's Current Challenge

The Red Lion 150 development phase has revealed many things, including misconceptions about how Rugby at Cambridge, and indeed the Varsity match actually work. The most common of these is the widely held belief that the University has helped fund CURUFC to date. The fact is that CURUFC has hitherto always supported itself as a result of receiving significant Varsity Match income, though the University has over the years made changes to help fund several of the major sports, such as cricket, hockey, rowing and athletics, particularly in connection with facilities provision and travel costs. 

This worked reasonably well until 2008, but the combination of the Financial Crash, changing city attitudes, loss of the major sponsorship from Lehman and then Nomura, the continued growth of professional rugby, and of course the competition from four Twickenham internationals in the month before the traditional Varsity Match date has presented a challenging situation – somewhat of a perfect storm in fact!

As a consequence, we are pleased to say that we are now progressing discussions about the funding situation with the University, and we would anticipate support for the running costs of our facilities and for future infrastructure development projects. However, this will not meet the long-term financial requirements to maintain and indeed improve the standard of rugby throughout the University. We need to turn to our Alumni and supporters to secure this future.

The Red Lion 150 development phase has revealed many things, including misconceptions about how Rugby at Cambridge, and indeed the Varsity match actually work. The most common of these is the widely held belief that the University has helped fund CURUFC to date. The fact is that CURUFC has hitherto always supported itself as a result of receiving significant Varsity Match income, though the University has over the years made changes to help fund several of the major sports, such as cricket, hockey, rowing and athletics, particularly in connection with facilities provision and travel costs. 

Ensure the future of CURUFC

Without the support of our members, the club will be unable to compete in the Varsity Match. Our task is to ensure that the club has the funding required to compete in this unique event.

This worked reasonably well until 2008, but the combination of the Financial Crash, changing city attitudes, loss of the major sponsorship from Lehman and then Nomura, the continued growth of professional rugby, and of course the competition from four Twickenham internationals in the month before the traditional Varsity Match date has presented a challenging situation – somewhat of a perfect storm in fact!

Raise £6M by our 150th anniversary in 2021

Our campaign aims to raise £6 million to support a number of specific causes within the club. Our aim is to achieve this by 2021 when the club will celebrate it’s 150th anniversary.

As a consequence, we are pleased to say that we are now progressing discussions about the funding situation with the University, and we would anticipate support for the running costs of our facilities and for future infrastructure development projects. However, this will not meet the long-term financial requirements to maintain and indeed improve the standard of rugby throughout the University. We need to turn to our Alumni and supporters to secure this future.

Create a lasting impact

Find out more about the specific aims of our campaign. With a joint focus on improving our facilities and coaching team, as well as supporting the members of our club, why not find out more about our aims.

The current position

  • The Club has had a significant operational financial deficit in each of the last three financial years – the latest year end was June 2016.
  • This deficit has been covered by drawing from the club’s reserve fund, and obviously cannot continue indefinitely, in fact not beyond this current season