Rugby Rotary History
Rotary Club of Rugby Founded in 1922
Rotary was conceived and founded in 1905 by a Chicago lawyer, Paul Harris, who because of the loneliness he felt in the big city mentioned the idea of fellowship rather than making money from each other, to 3 business friends and at the first meeting on the 23rd February 1905 the Rotary Movement was started. In1911 it crossed the Atlantic and by 1914 eight Clubs had been formed in Great Britain & Ireland.
The Rotary Club of Rugby
Through the enthusiasm and encouragement of George H Roberts the local district Superintendent of the Prudential Assurance Company ("the man from the Pru") a group of 9 professional men called an interest meeting at the Grand Hotel, Albert Street on Thursday 20th April 1922 where Rotarian Vivian Carter, Secretary of the British Association Rotary Clubs, spoke about the Rotary movement and a need to form a Club in Rugby.
The meeting, to which 59 business and professional men were invited, was chaired by Lewis Loverock, a local Draper, and the 27 who attended unanimously decided to form a Club and set up an interim Council to run it. They later were to elect as their First President, Capt Philip H Wykeham, Managing Director of the local building firm, Foster & Dicksee
On Friday,9th June 1922, an inaugural lunch was held at the Grand Hotel when the speaker was Rtn William Hadley Secretary of the Northampton Club (formed in1921), who gave an address on "The First Duty of a Rotary Club" . 21 members were present with 7 visitors.
On the 20th June 1922 the Club was officially affiliated to Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland (RIBI) and became it's 85th club and the 1317th club in the world.
It soon got involved in community work in Rugby by providing entertainment for the inmates of Rugby Poor Law Institute and from that time has provided service to the community through many avenues of work and can claim a number of 'firsts'