Conference League South

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Conference League South
Conference league south.jpg
Founded2012
Country England
Other club(s) from Wales
Number of teams14
Level on pyramid4
Promotion toLeague 1 (via RLF application)
Relegation toMidlands League
South West League
West League
East League
South Premier
London and South East League
North Wales Conference
South Wales Conference
Domestic cup(s)Challenge Cup
Current championsHammersmith Hills Hoists

The Southern Conference League is a British rugby league division in the Rugby Football League's tier 4. It is the highest level of amateur rugby league in the South of England and South Wales. It was one of the leagues that replaced Rugby League Conference. The competition was first played between 2012 and 2016, and was relaunched in 2019 after a two-year hiatus.

History[edit]

The Conference League South was founded in 2012 as a result of restructuring of the community game which saw the Rugby League Conference (RLC) broken up into regional leagues covering Britain and the heartlands National Conference League (NCL) move to a summer season. Some RLC sides joined a newly formed National Conference League Division 3 for a single season and applied for full membership of the NCL the following season.

The Conference League South was created for sides outside the rugby league heartlands of the North of England that wanted a higher standard of rugby league than the Midlands Rugby League Premier Division or the South Premier but were not yet ready to join the NCL.

In 2013 the six teams to compete in the CLS were [1], Bristol Sonics, Nottingham Outlaws and St Albans Centurions joined from National Conference League Division 3; Leicester Storm and Northampton Demons were elevated from the premier division of Midlands Rugby League and Sheffield Hallam Eagles joined as a new side after the collapse of the Championship reserve under-23 division.

Northampton Demons and St Albans Centurions were replaced with Oxford Cavaliers and Valley Cougars in 2014 however Oxford Cavaliers failed to complete the season. Bristol Sonics dropped down to the West of England Rugby League in 2015 which allowed four new clubs to join; Gloucestershire Warriors, Coventry Bears Reserves, Torfaen Tigers and Raiders RL alongside the return of Oxford Cavaliers.

London Chargers were promoted to compete in 2016 alongside a new reserve side from University of Gloucestershire All Golds with Gloucestershire Warriors, Leicester Storm, Oxford Cavaliers and Sheffield Hallam Eagles dropping out.

At the end of the 2016 season, it was announced that the Conference League South season would not take place in 2017, and teams would return to their respective regional leagues.[1] In May 2017, the RFL announced plans to introduce a new Southern League competition from 2018 onwards.[2]

The Conference League South was reintroduced for the 2019 season as the Southern Conference League, split into geographic Eastern and Western divisions, with the Hammersmith Hills Hoists winning the first title under the tournament's new name. The start of the 2020 season was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Clubs[edit]

Team City Ground
Southern Conference League East
Bedford Tigers Bedford Great Ouse Way[3]
Brixton Bulls Brixton, London Woodmansterne Playing Fields[4]
Eastern Rhinos Colchester Mill Road Playing Fields[5]
Hammersmith Hills Hoists Acton, London Chiswick Rugby Club[6]
Hemel Stags Hemel Hempstead Pennine Way[7]
London Chargers Clapham, London Clapham Common[8]
North Herts Crusaders Hitchin King George V Playing Fields[9]
South London Silverbacks Bromley, London Parkhouse Rugby Ground[10]
Wests Warriors Ealing, London Twyford Avenue[11]
Southern Conference League West
All Golds Gloucester St. Peter's Sports Ground[12]
Devon Sharks Newton Abbot Bullands Fields[13]
Swindon St George Swindon Supermarine Sports Club[14]
Torfaen Tigers Pontypool, Wales New Panteg Rugby Club[15]
Valley Cougars Treharris, Wales Treharris Rugby Club[16]

Results[edit]

Season Grand Final Information
Champions Score Runners-up
2012 Hemel Stags 17-10 Huddersfield Underbank Rangers
2013 Sheffield Hallam Eagles 32-24 Nottingham Outlaws
2014 Valley Cougars 19-10 Sheffield Hallam Eagles
2015 Nottingham Outlaws 39-12 Valley Cougars
2019 Hammersmith Hills Hoists 16-10 London Chargers

Winners[edit]

Club Wins Winning years
1 Hemel Stags 1 2012
2 Sheffield Hallam Eagles 1 2013
3 Valley Cougars 1 2014
4 Nottingham Outlaws 1 2015
5 Hammersmith Hills Hoists 1 2019

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hodgson, Phil (15 December 2016). "Goodbye to the Conference League South?". Total Rugby League. League Publications. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  2. ^ "New Southern Rugby League Competition set to launch in 2018". The Rugby Football League. 26 May 2017. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  3. ^ "Contact Bedford Tigers RLFC". www.pitchero.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  4. ^ "StackPath". www.brixtonbulls.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  5. ^ "StackPath". www.easternrhinos.co.uk. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  6. ^ "CONTACT". mysite. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  7. ^ "Hemel Stags - Contact Us". www.hemelstags.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  8. ^ "Contact London Chargers RL". www.pitchero.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  9. ^ "North Herts Crusaders Rugby League". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  10. ^ "CONTACT US". Silverbacks RLFC. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  11. ^ "Contact Wests Warriors Rugby League". www.pitchero.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  12. ^ "Contact". All Golds Rugby League Gloucestershire. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  13. ^ "Location". Devon Sharks RLFC. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  14. ^ "Contact Swindon St George RL". www.pitchero.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  15. ^ "Torfaen Tigers to open new home against Swindon". South Wales Argus. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  16. ^ "Southern Conference League | Team-by-team Guide". www.rugby-league.com. Retrieved 7 June 2020.

External links[edit]