Duke of Sussex to continue as RFL Patron

20 Jan 2020

By: Sport Industry Group

The RFL has confirmed that the Duke of Sussex will continue as the organisation’s Patron despite the Duke's announcement that he will step down as a full-time working member of the royal family.

The Duke succeeded his grandmother, HM The Queen, as Patron of the RFL in December 2016 where he has been involved in community and youth programmes as well as presenting the Challenge Cup trophy at Wembley in 2019 and hosting the draw for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup in Buckingham Palace in January 2020.

Ralph Rimmer, the RFL Chief Executive, said: “We received a message from the Palace on Saturday explaining that the Duke will continue to work with his patronages – as confirmed in the statements from HM The Queen and Buckingham Palace. 

“We are delighted, and we look forward to the continuation of the relationship between the Duke and Rugby League. He has shown a genuine commitment to working with us, initially getting involved in our community and youth programmes and sharing his support for England Rugby League, before recent higher profile roles presenting the Challenge Cup at Wembley last August, and of course hosting the draw for RLWC2021 at Buckingham Palace last week and demonstrating his personal commitment to our sport’s Mental Fitness Charter.

“Speaking on behalf of RLWC2021, they were equally thrilled by his involvement – and are equally delighted that the Duke will remain the sport’s Patron as we build towards hosting Men’s, Women’s and Wheelchair Rugby League World Cups in England next year.”