Cheltenham College has a rich sporting heritage dating back to its foundation in 1841. We are one of the four original rugby playing schools, the others being Rugby, Sherborne and Durham. On the cricketing front, the College coach, James Lillywhite, managed the first Gloucestershire match played on the school ground in 1872. By the time WG Grace hit an unbeaten triple century on the College square in 1876, the Cheltenham Festival was well established and has been a central part of the county cricket season ever since.
Girls' sport has a much shorter history. The first sixth form house was opened in 1981 and College became fully co-educational in 1998. However, during this short period, we have produced three hockey internationals, reached the National Hockey Finals on several occasions and may soon be able to boast an Olympic athlete. Netball is also developing apace and this year the largest premier league netball club in the country has chosen to use College as a training base and the Rowing Club has its first Captain of Boats for girls. There seems little doubt that the girls are certainly making up for lost time!
We continue to be proud of the role sport plays in College life. Not only do we benefit from an outstanding range of facilities, we also have a select group of top-level sporting professionals and coaches, providing pupils with all they need to achieve success, not just on the school stage but also at regional and national levels. Recent College successes include an unbeaten season for the rugby 1st XV in 2008, qualification for the National Hockey Finals by the girls' 1st XI in 2010 and the retention of the Faber Cup in 2011, the top accolade in rackets. As mentioned above, we have recently developed a strong link with Hucclecote, the Premier league netball club. Not only will all home matches be played at College but also our girls will benefit from expert tuition from the Hucclecote coaches. It should be quite a season!
Our full and varied fixture list spanning all co-ed sports means that there are opportunities for the vast majority of Cheltonians to represent College during their time with us. College fields up to four teams within a given sporting year group and the successes of the C and D teams are as much a cause for celebration, as are our achievements at higher levels.
For more information on all the individual sports, please refer to the menu.
Termly overview of main sports
- Rugby for boys
- Hockey for girls
- Hockey or rowing for boys
- Netball or rowing for girls
- Cricket or rowing for boys
- Tennis or rowing for girls
Equestrian, badminton, squash, rackets, athletics, cross-country, golf, swimming, girls' cricket, polo, badminton, water polo and shooting