From a group of enthusiasts, a preparatory meeting was held on 2nd October 1963, under the direction of Mr Ivor Tulloch, principal teacher of Physical Education, Liberton High School, attended by six former pupils. By Saturday 19th October, we were able to field fourteen former pupils and one pupil for our match with a Penicuik XV under the captaincy of Norman Speakman, recording a win of nine points to three. Our first Annual General Meeting was held on 6th November 1963 at Liberton High School with a good turn-out of 16 members, President, Coach and general advisor. From our mediocre start, we gradually began to establish ourselves as a Club capable of playing good running rugby and fielding three teams.
During a very successful 71/72 season, Bruce Hay was selected for an Edinburgh under-23 XV, a great honour for a junior Club and in 1973 Bruce Hay joined Boroughmuir and graduated from the Edinburgh XV to a combined Cities XV playing against the All Blacks as well as a trial for Scotland. This promising start led to several caps for Scotland, representative Honours and a tour of New Zealand with the British & Irish Lions. In the same season we also lost Brian Halliday and Ian McDonald to Boroughmuir. Brian gained Honours with Edinburgh XV and cap with the Scotland B team.
The Club has had it's ups and downs over the years, from winning the Edinburgh and Districts League for 74/75 season with an unbeaten record, promoted to Division 7 of the National Leagues then experiencing a disastrous decline from 1976 through Division 7 to 2nd Division Edinburgh and District. The loss of some of our prominent players who had moved to senior status and due to a lack of talent coming up through the teams meant the club had a difficult time for the next few years.
Fortunately, in the 79/80 season we were promoted back to Edinburgh District 1st Division, the club also boasted a thriving Colts XV who finished second in the Colts League as well as the opening of our new Clubhouse which was hoped to be the starting point of new successes and new names appearing with representative Honours.To help celebrate, Bruce Hay brought a Star-studded International XV to the opening and supported us on this grand occasion by putting on a Liberton jersey once again, captaining the Liberton Select against this formidable opposition led by Dougie Morgan. Liberton FP RFC is proud and always grateful to both Bruce & Dougie for their part in a great celebration and truly momentous occasion for the club.
***INSERT SECTION REGARDING LLANDAFF NORTH***
To read more about this long-standing relationship and see some pictures from our adventures, you can visit our 'Celts - United in Rugby' section here.
In 2016, just over 50 years after the club came to be, Liberton proudly formed their first Ladies team captained by Kat Todorova. Following in the footsteps of our club founders, the team started off with a small, but dedicated, group of enthusiastic players excited for the challenge ahead. In the weeks and months that followed, the team has worked hard on and off the pitch, making an impression in the Scottish Women's Rugby Development Leagues, joining forces with other teams from around the country to help raise the profile of Women's Rugby and welcome a whole new generation to the game we love. Off the pitch, the team quickly solidified themselves within the club in true Liberton fashion earning the respect of their clubmates as well as that of their opponents.
As a result of this hard work and constant effort, their numbers have grown steadily over the years welcoming many more faces to the club and in 2019 the team earned promotion to the Scottish Ladies East League 1 - the team have not let this diminish their work-rate, or their welcoming and inclusive approach and continue to go from strength to strength.
Much has changed at Liberton FP RFC since our founding all those many years ago in the shadow of Liberton High School yet today our Club stands proud as an establishment with a rich history and serves as an inclusive, welcoming home for all those seeking competition, friendship, comradery and family.
We wish to give special thanks to Ivor Tulloch, our first coach and advisor in the early days of the Club's history, backed-up by the work done by secretaries, John Calder and Bill McDonald. In addition, a huge thank you goes out to Norman 'Norrie' Speakman, captain in 1963 and still giving service to the Club, along with ex-Captains, Kenny Marr and Alan Hay.