PEMBROKE DOCK Harlequins RFC began back in 1880 when around fifteen men working in Pembroke Dock’s Dockyard pulled on their rugby shirts and set up the club with the teams matches being played at the Barrack Hill Ground. Since then the club has survived through some very tough periods including two World Wars and the closure of the town’s dockyard leaving us with the fine club we have today.
The club over the years
When the club began all those years ago it was called Pembroke Dock Football Club then later Pembroke Dock Rugby Football Club until the early 1900’s when the name Pembroke Dock Harlequins was finally established. The Pembroke Dock Quins began playing at the Barrack Hill Ground and many other venues until they made their permanent home the Bierspool Ground in 1956. But the facilities at the ground were very basic with players having to get changed at various pubs and having to walk to the playing field but with help of members and friends of the club over the years buildings have been added enabling the players to use amenities such as hot showers and clean changing rooms.
But all of this may not have been possible if it had not of been for the spirit of the town and members in keeping the club going through two world wars and through the closure of the Quins’ main supplier of players the Pembroke Dock Dockyard in 1926. It was five committee members that unanimously voted to keep the club going in the 1927 A.G.M. after the closure of the dockyard and their names were Walter David, Llew James, A. Skerry, Bill Husband and Archie Howell.
Over the years the Pembroke Dock Quins has had some great players and some great teams. Some of these players include Ernie Finch and W.J.A Davies who went on to play internationally for their respected home nations of Wales and England. W.J.A Davies even went on to captain England in 1921 at Twickenham against Scotland.
The Quins has also hosted some great teams including the mighty Llanelli in the Welsh Cup. This Llanelli team had internationals galore including Phil Bennett, Delme Thomas, J.J. Williams and Derek Quinnel.
The Pembroke Dock Harlequins Ladies Committee was formed after the Second World War. I played a vital role in helping to finance the purchase he Bierspool Ground by helping out with fundraising including running dances. All of this money went towards purchasing a permanent home for the Quins. When the committee was first set up in was under the chairmanship of Mrs Egerton and included Mrs Dix, Mrs Williams, Mrs Hay, Mrs Lloyd, Mrs Shirlock, Miss Blackmore and Miss Peters.
After the Ground was finally purchased and a pavilion was built the ladies now had a new task and this was to provide the players with cups of tea and meals. Thanks to their support and fundraising the Quins rugby club is still going strong and still holding their annual summer carnival.
The club setup
Pembroke Dock Harlequins RFC run 11 mini and junior rugby sides from U7s through to U16s.This season also sees a new ladies rugby team under formation and numbers are building each week. he Quins also run a youth side and a first team and development team. Head oach is Bob Lovell, who is assisted by Gavin Lloyd, Jeff Newman and Tony Manning.
The club is always on the look out for new players throughout its age grades and welcome new and old players to the Quins Ground. Senior training is held on a Monday and Thursday night at 7pm. The youth train on a Wednesday night again with a 7pm start. Youth coaches are Gareth Scourfield and Ian Osbourne with Dai Lewis as youth team manager.
Mini and junior rugby are held every Sunday with either training or rugby matches – start times on a Sunday are 10.30am. The club has a great sports physio in Mr David Usher, who is available on Monday and Thursday nights at the Rugby Club Physio Room from 7pm. Pembroke Dock Harlequins RFC respects rugby club within the local community and is a great focal point for the many youngsters and sports enthusiasts within the area.
The club has over twenty WRU qualified rugby coaches and eighteen WRU qualified Level 1 referees. All of these are volunteers who give up their valuable time to help promote the great sport of rugby and team work within the community. The rugby club would also like to thank all their sponsors and supporters for their continued generous support – this support helps make this club the great place that we all enjoy today.
If anyone would like to get involved with this fantastic rugby club, whether its playing in one of the many rugby sides we have to offer, or assisting in the running and day to day club duties, please get in touch with the following committee members:
Quins Seniors and Youth: Dean Maiden – [email protected]
Quins Seniors: Gavin Lloyd – [email protected]
Quins Juniors: Huw Baker – [email protected]
Quins Minis: Andrew McDonald – [email protected].