Paul Barrière

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Paul Barrière was born on 8 June 1920 in Espéraza and died on 29 May 2008 in Biarritz, aged 88.[1] He was president of the Fédération Française de Rugby à XIII from 1947 to 1955.

Barrière played rugby union for Espéraza in 1936 and Carcassone.[1][2]

During World War II, Barrière joined the French Resistance and operated in Aude.[2] Whilst in the resistance, he met French leaders of rugby league which had been banned by the collaborationist Vichy government.[2]

After the war, Barrière, along with Marcel Laborde who served as president of the French Rugby League between 1944 and 1947, worked to re-establish rugby league, which had been severely disrupted.[1] Barrière became vice-president of the French Rugby League on 16 September 1944 at the Hotel Regina in Toulouse. He was elected president on 2 July 1947 at a meeting in Bayonne. Barrière was the driving force behind the agreement to create the International Rugby League Board and to institute a World Cup. When asked for this opinion on moves to name the World Cup trophy after him, Barrière refused the honour.[2]

Under Barrière, the French national team undertook its first tour of the southern hemisphere.[2]

From 1990 until 2004 Barrière organised the Festival de la Cite in Carcassonne for musical theatre.[2]

In 2008, Barrière was posthumously awarded the inaugural RLIF Spirit of Rugby League Award which was created to honour those deemed to have made a significant contribution to the sport during their lifetime.[3][4]

Barrière was survived by his wife, Jeanine, and her daughter, Babette.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d "Décès de Paul Barrière : le festival de la Carcassonne est orphelin" (in French). Toulouse: La Dépêche du Midi. 30 May 2008. Archived from the original on 17 January 2010. Retrieved 17 January 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Disparition de Paul Barrière" (in French). 30 May 2008. Archived from the original on 16 January 2010. Retrieved 16 January 2010. 
  3. ^ Ledger, John (19 November 2008). "World Cup finalists united in effort to raise spirits". Yorkshire: Yorkshire Post. Retrieved 11 January 2010. 
  4. ^ "Hayne named International Player of the Year". Australian Rugby League. 2009. Retrieved 11 January 2010.