Our History



As the country moved beyond its post war years Barry RFC continued to grow on and off the pitch.  As early as 1950s there were concrete plans in building a new clubhouse, complete with a stand, at Reservoir Field to replace the old Nissen hut which was become past its sell-by date.  Over a course of 7 years, through a combination of lobbying to the Council, patient planning and unwavering determination, that dream was to become a reality.

On 23 September 1964, the clubhouse as it is now was opened by then chairman Trevor Bassett.  This brought Barry RFC to a new era, whereby stability is now the name of the game.  By now, four pitches as supposed to one are available at any one time, which meant that all senior sides could play at the same time at home, as supposed to 'borrowing' pitches from the council elsewhere. 

Throughout the 1960s the fortunes of Barry RFC ebbed and flowed, via a combination of players returning home, retiring, emigrating, or moving onto other clubs.  An inexperienced Barry side suffered late in the decade, culminating in the folding of the Youth team in 1967, but fortunes began to change as the 70s approached, and by 1971-72 a 3rd XV was re-introduced under the experienced leadership of Chris 'Topper' Oxenham, demonstrating the strength in depth of the club.

It was ultimately youth and not experience that turned the tide as the decade drew to a close.  There was even a 4th XV introduced in 1977, which survived till the late 80s, while the 1st XV began to string together a series of victories.  In 1980-81, the 1st XV finally managed to win more games than they lost, a first since the clubhouse was opened.

The 1980s saw Barry's playing prowess reinvigorated and there were successful cup runs, most notably in 1981 when Barry conquered first Llantwit Major (9-6), then Pencoed (15-9) in the Schweppes Challenge Cup.  Before that season Barry had never won a game in the competition.  Their reward was a 'plum' tie against holders Cardiff with their bevy of international talent.  Barry even went to the lead twice in the first half, and only trailed 6-11 at half time, but ultimately the holders' experience and talent told in the second half as they ran out handsome winners.  The tie, however, had put Barry on the Welsh rugby map firmly.

The club emerged through the tough times of the 1960s and 70s via grim determination and dedication of committees, back-room staff and players alike, and their hard-work was rewarded as the 1980s drew to a close, with the club in rude health.  On the pitch, Barry will experience more success, including a cup victory over Glamorgan Wanderers, whilst off the pitch, the club celebrated its centenary in 1987, drawing the first century of the club to a close.