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Rugby (England)

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Rugby (England)

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Rugby [1] is a town in Warwickshire, in the West Midlands region of England, part of the United Kingdom.


Rugby has always been a centre for the surrounding farming communities, and a weekly cattle market continued to be held in the town until April 2008, but it was the coming of the London & Birmingham Railway in 1838 that caused a significant expansion of the town.

In 1840, a junction with the Midland Counties Railway from Leicester was completed. Major railway yards and other heavy engineering industries developed in the town.

The decline of heavy engineering and the downgrading of the railway facilities led to a decline in the town. However, efforts have been made to exploit the central location of the town to attract new businesses and distribution centres to the area.

Get in[edit]

By train[edit]

Rugby railway station is located less than a mile from the town centre (the Clock Tower), with the entrance to Rugby School about 400 yards further on.

Situated on the West Coast main line there are express services to and from London approximately hourly operated by Virgin Trains [2] The typical journey time is 55 minutes. There are direct services to Liverpool, North Wales, the Lake District and Glasgow, each served two or three times a day. Advanced booking of tickets and travel outside of peak periods (7.00 - 9.00 to London, 17.00 - 19.00 from London) is strongly recommended to avoid the highest fares.

Local services to Coventry (12 mins.) and Birmingham (New Street)(45mins.), and to Northampton (30mins.) are operated by London Midland [3] hourly in each direction.

By road[edit]

Rugby's central location in England has resulted in an excellent road network.

Rugby is situated close to the junction of the M1 and M6 motorways, with Junction 18 of the M1 being five miles to the east and Junction 1 of the M6 three miles north of the town. The M45, a short spur off the M1 terminates near the village of Dunchurch, three miles south of Rugby.

The A14 trunk road linking the Midlands with East Anglia and the East Coast starts at Catthorpe, which is four miles northeast of the town.

Two major Roman roads pass close to the town. The Fosse Way which was built to link Exeter with Lincoln passes six miles to the west, and the Watling Street linking London with North Wales comes within four miles to the east of the town. The Watling Street (A45) still carries considerable heavy traffic, whereas the Fosse Way (B4455) has become a local road, although popular during the holiday season with motorists travelling to the West Country wishing to take a more scenic and less congested route.

By air[edit]

Birmingham International airport [4], situated midway between Coventry and Birmingham is 25 miles from Rugby. Flights operate daily to most major European cities and also to Newark, New Jersey, and Dubai. There is an hourly service to Birmingham International railway station from early morning to late evening, journey time 25 mins.

Get around[edit]

There is a comprehensive network of buses, mainly operated by Stagecoach liinking Rugby town centre with the outlying suburbs and with many of the nearby villages. Tickets can be purchased from the driver, and change is given.

Buses link the railway station with the town centre every 12 min.

There are also regular bus services to the neighbouring towns of Leamington Spa, Banbury, Northampton, Leicester and Coventry which afford an opportunity to enjoy the surrounding countryside of "Leafy Warwickshire" in a leisurely manner.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Rugby Art Gallery and Museum [5] - A nationally-recognised collection exploring the Roman past (by means of remains excavated at nearby Tripontium), Rugby's cultural heritage and the great collection of Modern Art.
  • the James Gilbert Rugby Football Museum, town centre, opposite the main entrance to Rugby School, tel 01788 540 795, open Mo-Sa 9am-5pm, admission free - housed in the building in which James Gilbert made the very first rugby football in 1842. This little museum is especially popular with rugby fans. Handmade balls are still manufactured here, and the process may be viewed by visitors from Mondays to Wednesdays.
  • Rugby School, one of the most famous private schools in the country, is close to the town centre but not open to the general public. A walk around its perimeter gives an excellent view of its imposing Victorian architecture and also of the field on which the game of rugby football was first played.

Do[edit][add listing]

Buy[edit][add listing]

Rugby has a mix of shops from the unique and independent retailers found mainly in the Regent Street, Albert Street, Bank Street and Castle Street areas, to the larger high street names including those found in the Clock Towers Shopping Centre located in the town centre. Here are just some of the independent retailers found in Rugby:

  • Anna Lorimer Art & Framing, 18-22 Henry Street, Rugby, CV21 2QA. A gallery showing a selection of artists' work and also offers a bespoke framing service.
  • CV22 The Rugby Co. [6], 2 Lawrence Sheriff Street, Rugby, CV22 5EJ. Offering fine clothing & accessories inspired by the heritage of rugby football in Rugby. Focused on British made products and based close to Rugby School.
  • Eliza Doolittle 8 Albert Street, Rugby, CV21 2RS. Retailer of baby and children's wear including christening, formal clothing and designer brands.
  • Etcetera, 31 Regent Street, Rugby, CV21 2PE. Offers a selection of handbags, accessories and gifts for her, him, children and all occasions.
  • Sass Style, 22 Regent Street, Rugby, CV21 2PY. A boutique offering ladies's fashion, accessories and shoes. They also offer style advice.
  • World of Difference, 20 High Street, Rugby, CV21 3BG. Stocks fair trade products including jewellery, homewares, food, crafts and more. It originally opened in 1981.

Eat[edit][add listing]

Drink[edit][add listing]

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Town Centre[edit]

The Three Horse Shoes[7] Close to Rugby School and main shopping area. Originally an 18th century coaching inn.

The Carlton Hotel [8] Convenient for the railway station.

The Diamond House Hotel [9] Close to recreation ground and sports centre. Convenient for Rugby School.

The Woodville Hotel [10] Convenient for Rugby School.

Out of Town[edit]

Brownsover Hall [11] Grade II listed Victoria Gothic mansion in its own grounds.

ibis Rugby East [12] Ibis Hotel Rugby East is located to the East of Rugby Town near Junction 18 of the M1. The ibis Hotel Rugby East is located close to all major distribution, exhibition and conference centres in the area.

Get out[edit]

Stanford Hall [13] is a 17th century stately home situated seven miles away, just over the border with Leicestershire. It is closely associated with the early days of flight, and the River Avon flows through the grounds.

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