First presented in 2010 the trophy is an acknowledgement of the young and emerging talent within Navy Rugby. This talent if nurtured and developed will ensure that the future of the Union will remain vibrant and exciting. The trophy was specially commissioned and fashioned from original oak and copper from HMS Victory. It symbolizes the proud traditions and heritage upon which the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines and Navy Rugby are founded. The Proud Heritage Exciting Future Trophy is presented with a certificate that gives its meaning, the words on the certificate are as follows:
The award was first made in 2010 at the end of season dinner, which coincided with the Navy team ending the Army’s eight-year winning run in Inter Service rugby. The purpose of the award was to acknowledge the exciting talent that exists within the wider Navy Senior XV squad, the talent, which if harnessed and developed, will provide Navy Rugby a future befitting of its proud heritage.
In 2011, to mark his stepping down as Director of Rugby, a trophy was commissioned by Lieutenant Commander Geraint Ashton Jones Royal Navy, to accompany the award. The trophy was designed and created by Mr David Burton, himself a former member of the Royal Navy, making use of original oak and copper from HMS Victory.
The trophy consists of a leather-covered plinth to symbolise the original leather rugby balls of our great game of rugby football. On this sits a piece of original oak from HMS Victory.
This represents the “Heart of Oak’ that is at the core of all Navy players who, down the ages, have worn the famous blue shirt. Copper has been embedded into the oak trophy because of its remarkable properties and what they in turn represent.
Navy players do not crack under pressure and they are the excellent conductors for the frisson that Navy Rugby can engender.
Finally the trophy includes the words ‘Break the Line’. These three words from the great Admiral, acknowledge that Navy Rugby, just as Nelson before, has found itself more often than not as the underdog. Again, like Nelson, it is through innovative tactics and superior understanding that Navy Rugby will continue to succeed. Nelson, through agility and speed, set out to cut across the French flotilla’s battle lines in pursuit of victory; a tactic appropriate for the rugby field where the appreciation of space and an ability to break the defensive line was always a guiding principle of Geraint’s coaching philosophy.
|Year||The Proud Heritage Exciting Future Trophy|
|2019||Brad Janes - Centre|
|2018||Scott Makepeace - Second Row|
|2017||Gareth Rees - Scrum Half|
|2016||Jarrard Hayler - Flanker|
|2015||Edd Pascoe - Lock|
|2014||Sam Davies - Centre|
|2013||Josh Terry - Prop|
|2012||Nathan Huntley - Fly Half|
|2011||Sam Laird - Openside Flanker|
|2010||Dale Sleeman - Centre|