130 years of Bath Rugby v Bristol - the rivalry continues

26 October 2018

On 27th October 1888, Bath Rugby played their first ever derby fixture against Bristol in front of a crowd of 700 at the County Ground, Bristol.

130 years on, the rivalry continues to grow with Bath Rugby locking horns with their West Country rivals at Twickenham in The Clash on Saturday 6th April.

We take a look through the archives reliving the inaugural fixture between the two sides.


These teams met on the Gloucestershire County Ground on Saturday, and attracted a fair number of spectators, estimated roughly between 700 and 800. The Bristol men still want more combination before they will be seen to advantage, but they improve weekly, and will doubtless continue to do so.

The Bath men are certainly stronger this season than they have been for some time. Walker, the captain, was absent, but F. Soane, who took his place, exercised capital control over his men, who really play with a wonderful combination. Moneypenny and Anderson at three-quarters, Parham at half, and F. Soane, Clerk and Alexander forward, did excellent work. Special mention must be made of Parham. Gee won the toss, and elected to play with the wind, and at 15:45.

Bath started the ball; Durham returned and play commenced in neutral ground. Bath had a free kick soon after the start, but nothing resulted from it. White at length got away, and scored the first point for Bath. Moneypenny failed at goal. The leather was restarted, and Brown scored a try for Bristol, which Derham by a capital kick converted into the converted three points. After half-time Gee kicked off, and after some good passing behind, Anderson by a good run notched the second try for Bath. Moneypenny tried the place, which was again a failure. Both sides then played up with spirit, and Bastard got away with a dashing run, made a good deal of ground but was collared, and passed blindly, enabling Moneypenny, who was on the spot, to get clean away and score a third try for Bath, which he managed to convert into a goal. Gee started the oval once more, and directly after Vincent kicked into touch-in-goal. The remainder of the play was of a give-and-take description, and when “no side” was called the score stood: Bath, one goal, two tries, and one minor; Bristol, one goal. Bath thus winning one of the fastest games we have seen by five points to three.


Bristol: Derham, Back: Rev J.M Bastard, V.W Davies, I Huxtable and H.B Turner: Three-Quarters: R.D Cruickshank and E.T.S Badger, Half Backs: A.Gee (Captain), B Gee, S.W Brown, M.Thompson, W.Cogan, C Giles, R Bryan and P.Loxley Forwards:

Bath: G.Horsford, Back: C. J. B. Moneypenny, F.W. Anderson, F. S. White and  H.T.Vincent: Three-Quarters: T.N.M. Parham and B.C. Helps, Half Backs: R.J Hare, T. Alexander,  A.S. Clerk, T.R.Thompson, F. Soane (Captain), V Soane, G.Bailey and H.A Spencer, Forwards.


On Saturday 6th April, Bath and Bristol will make the trip to Twickenham in one of the most-anticipated fixtures of the rugby calendar - The Clash.

For the last two editions of the event, over 120,000 supporters have descended on the home of England Rugby and it promises to be another unmissable occasion in 2019.

How DO i book my tickets?  

You can purchase tickets online here or by calling the Ticket Office on 0844 448 1865.

-       Adult tickets from £15 

-       Junior tickets from £5

-       Family of four for just £40

-       Group discount when you purchase five or more tickets


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