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One of my everlasting memories of watching Welsh rugby in the 1970s is stepping off the train at Cardiff to the sound of "Any spare tickets, any spares". Cockney accents were the first you'd hear, ticket touts down for the day from London. Then walking down Westgate Street and on every corner there was also someone looking for or selling tickets, the tickets selling for the biggest prices were always sold outside the Angel Hotel. Then there would be the swappers, "East for a West", "A stand for two fields".  

The life of a rugby ticket is a strange one. As far as its value goes it is an up and down affair. Usually it is sold at the price marked on the ticket, if the ticket is for a big match that is a sell out then it can reach up to ten times its value on the black market. Once a game kicks off its virtually worthless and often dropped by spectators at the venue. Some tickets find their way into collections and the collectors market where the value can rise to sometimes exceed its original price. A strange life indeed

Below is a selection of tickets for international and other matches through the ages. How many of these were sold on the black market I wonder ? 

For a closer view of each ticket please click on the image.


Ire-v-Scot-1880.jpg (48293 bytes) 1880 - Scotland v Ireland at Partick - This is the oldest ticket we know of  
W-E-03.jpg (69646 bytes) 1903 - Wales v England at Swansea - Jehodia Hodges scored 3 tries in a 21 - 5 victory  WRM-0239
Tk - NZ v Ll 24.jpg (63301 bytes) 1924 - Llanelli v NZ - The All Black Invincibles at Stradey Park  
W-E-26.jpg (68069 bytes) 1926 - Wales v England - 3 - 3 draw at the Arms park   WRM-0240
W-NSW-27.jpg (59023 bytes) 1927 - Wales v Waratahs - press ticket - Wales lost 18 - 8  WRM-0262
W-F-29.jpg (56869 bytes) 1929 - First French victory over Wales WRM-0246
W-E-30.jpg (50094 bytes) 1930 - 11- 3 loss against the English WRM-0241
W-S-31.jpg (56226 bytes) 1931 - Old Internationals ticket, a 13 - 8 win for Wales WRM-0255
W-E-32.jpg (90466 bytes) 1932 - A dropped goal by Ronnie Boon helped Wales to this first win over England for 10 years 


W-NZ-35.jpg (49513 bytes) 1935 - Another great victory over the All Blacks - 13 - 12  WRM-0251
W-I-36.jpg (95076 bytes) 1936 - The gates were closed 2 hours before kick off, the ground was full, the crowd rushed the gates and stormed into the ground. WRM-0259
W-I-38.jpg (56244 bytes) 1938 - seats inside the ropes - Wales v Ireland 1938 at Swansea  
W-S-39.jpg (95152 bytes) 1939 - Elvet Jones, top try scorer on the 1938 Lions tour made his debut for wales in this 11-3 welsh victory  
TK - NZ  XV v W 1946.jpg (50947 bytes) 1946 - Wales v NZ Kiwis  
W-NZ-53.jpg (70420 bytes) 1953 - last victory for Wales over the All Blacks in 1953,  13 - 8 WRM-0252
W-S-54.jpg (63682 bytes) 1954 - last Five Nations international at St Helen's Swansea, postponed match played on 10th April. WRM-0321
W-Int-57.jpg (54211 bytes) 1957 - v International XV - fund raising match for the Empire Games, held at the Arms Park one year later in 1958  
W-I-59.jpg (73881 bytes) 1959 - Wales v Ireland 1959 - 8 - 6 victory to Wales  
W-SA-60.jpg (52080 bytes) 1960 - Press messenger - this ticket will only admit a boy - v South Africa 1960, a day before the Arms Park was flooded. WRM-0258
W-NZ-63.jpg (55076 bytes) 1963 - Press Box - Terry Price a Llanelli schoolboy makes his debut in the Wales v New Zealand 1963 match  
TK - W v E 65.jpg (79838 bytes) 1965 - North Enclosure ticket 5/- (25p) - Wales v England 1965 - Stuart Watkins scores 2 tries in the 14-3 victory, Wales went on to win the Triple Crown. WRM-0242
TK - W v A 66.jpg (59034 bytes) 1966 - first Australian victory over Wales,  international debut for Barry John. WRM-0237
W-Pres-70.jpg (81737 bytes) 1970 - opening of the new Cardiff Arms Park, ticket for the NEW NORTH STAND. WRM-0254
W-S-70.jpg (73837 bytes) 1970 - Start of the 1970s, first five nations match in the NEW NORTH ENCLOSURE - Gareth Edwards commented "The singing of the crowd was tremendous, it inspired every one of us.  WRM-0257
Bbs-NZ-73.jpg (60571 bytes) 1973 - Phil Bennett started it, Gareth Edwards finished it, the greatest try ever scored, this is on the half way line on that side of the field. WRM-0235


Dai's diary - One of my everlasting memories was of queuing to enter Twickenham in the England v Wales match of 1980. A member of Taibach RFC who I'd recently played against was standing just to the side of the queue looking down in the mouth, when I enquired as to what his problem was he showed me his ticket, a 'forgery' - poor lad, I don't think he ever did get to see that game !  


BL-Rest-86.jpg (79383 bytes) 1986 - Lions v Rest of the World. First official Lions match on British soil. WRM-0236
W-F-91.jpg (75384 bytes) 1991 - This night time international against France opened the new floodlights at Cardiff Arms Park. The tickets are now printed on continuous computer paper.  
36.jpg (43415 bytes) 1987 - A new era in Rugby Union starts with the introduction of the Rugby World Cup, New Zealand are the co-hosts with Australia. This ticket is from the opening match against Italy. New Zealand won  70-6 and went on to defeat France in the final. 


W-B-96.jpg (91711 bytes) 1996 - 19,000 saw Wales' first victory over the Barbarians 31-10, WRM-0238
W-E-97.jpg (114133 bytes) 1997 - Wales v England, the last international at the Arms Park. WRM-0244



12.jpg (416081 bytes) 2015 - an A4 size on-line ticket for the French Top 14 match between Montpellier and Bayonne. (Thank you to Chris Woodhead for this donation)  
13.jpg (429490 bytes) 2016 - an A4 size on-line ticket from 'ticketmaster' for the match between USA and the Maori All Blacks at Toyota Park, Chicago.  
49.jpg (644235 bytes) 2018 - A nicely presented ticked for the Japan High School Rugby Tourament on the 3rd January 2018.  (Thank you to Yukihiro Iwase, Japan for this donation)  


Thank you for visiting this page. If you are able to contribute any other stories, photos or information or make a donation of rugby tickets to this page please click on the link below to email us.



To view the selection of used match tickets for sale on the Rugby Relics website please click on the above image or.......  



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Acknowledgements: Dai Richards (WRM),  Chris Woodhead, Bognor Regis, Yukihiro Iwase (Japan).




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