Honorary Life Membership of the Royal Navy Rugby Union Referee was introduced in to the Society in 1991 at the same time that subscriptions for membership were introduced. The award is in the gift of the current RNRURS Executive Committee and their discretion. When it was first introduced a number of Members of the Society who had left the Naval Service were retrospectively granted Honorary Life Membership. Since then it is normally conferred when an individual leaves the Service but this is not a binding requirement.  Two Life Members of the Royal Navy Rugby Union Referees Society also hold the distinction of being capped by the Royal Navy for playing.  They are Lt Cdr Glynn Thomas RN and Lt Cdr Peter Cunningham RN.  Glynn captained the Royal Navy team in 1960 and won 16 caps.  Peter meanwhile won two caps in 1967.

YearRNRURS Life MemberReferee Colours
2006Lt Cdr Geraint Ashton Jones RN1991
2012Cdr Roger Baileff RN2003
2012Lt Cdr Tim Bailey RN2004
2007Lt Cdr Peter Cunningham1986
WO Ken Dobson1984
1991Lt Cdr John Downie MBE RN
2005CCY Steve Harland1997
1991Lt Cdr Gordon Harris RN
1991-2012CPO Danny Irvine
2012Cdr Stew Kilby RN2007
1991Lt Cdr Ken Lewis RN
1982Lt Cdr Peter Newman RN
1991-2015Maj Tony Parker RM
1996Cdre Roger Parker RN1982
1991Capt Keith Ridland RN
1992-2015Lt Cdr Derek Rowland MBE RN1976
Cdr Chris Thomas RN1988
1991Lt Cdr Glynn Thomas RN

The newest recruits to Life Membership are Roger Baileff, Tim Bailey and Stew Kilby.  All three were awarded the honour in 2012.  Roger Baileff's officiating career included a good spell, before injury, on the RFU's Elite Panel that covers the Premiership. He regained his position on the Elite List having recovered and was a regular in the Premiership until his retirement in 2017.  During this time he was also considered impartial enough to run the line at the Army Navy match.  The first RN officials to do this for many years.  He was also Chairman of the Society for a couple of seasons before leaving the Service in 2005 having previously served as Treasurer and Training Officer.  Following a brief 'temporary acting stint' by a former chair, Roger was succeeded in 2006 as Chairman by Stew Kilby who managed the Society's affairs for five years.  A lengthy sentence.  Previous to his role as Chairman Stew was the Society's PR man.  Keeping these two Chairman on the right path throughout this time was the Society's former Secretary Tim Bailey. Nine years in this demanding role, from 2003-2012, is enough to test the patience of anyone and the fact that this was achieved despite a number of 'less than ideal' appointments is a testimony to Tim's dedication.