Our history

Based at Little Melton, just outside of Norwich, Crusaders has grown beyond all expectations since its humble beginnings in the 1960s when matches were played in Bowthorpe and the club house was the local pub.

Now it not only boasts a longstanding, successful senior’s section, it has a thriving youth and minis set up, plus a growing girl’s team and ladies sessions.

And it’s not just about learning rugby skills on the pitch - it’s as much about having fun, boosting confidence and making new friends.
We pride ourselves on our friendly, welcoming atmosphere and consider ourselves a real community club.

Rugby is known for its fantastic sporting values and here at Crusaders, it is something we strongly believe in. We are an accredited RFU club and promote good sportsmanship, respect and a competitive but fair attitude.
Whatever your ability, everyone gets the chance no matter what their ability.

So whether you are mum of an energetic toddler looking to let off some steam at tots rugby or a competitive 13-year-old girl looking for a new challenge, Crusaders is for you.

And even if playing rugby isn’t your thing, there are plenty of ways to get involved with our club. There are events throughout the year for the whole community to enjoy – from the annual beer festival, now in its 10th year and the Summer Ceilidh to the impressive fireworks display for Bonfire night and the summer Party on the Pitch.

For regular updates on what’s happening at the club, match reports, photographs, videos and plenty more, don’t forget to check out our Facebook and Instagram pages, clink on the links below.

Crusaders Minis
Crusaders Rugby
Crusaders Girls Rugby
Crusaders Youth
Crusaders RFC Instagram
Crusaders Youth Instagram


In 1960 Crusaders Rugby Club was formed by dedicated individuals wishing to further their Rugby at Senior levels. Lionel Goodman, Bob King and Ronnie Williams the three founding members. The club initially played at the Henderson (then Bowthorpe) school playing fields under the captaincy of Glen Carter and used The Lord Nelson Pub (now Dodgers) as their clubhouse.

In due course the club realised its full potential and the move to permanent facilities became reality with the relocation to the present address at Beck Hythe, Little Melton in 1975. Initially with a “Britannia Hut” aquired from a local army barracks as changing facilities. The clubhouse’s first bricks were laid in 1980 of course the bar was constructed first! And by and in 1985 full changing facilities were completed.

In 2002 the Club sectioned off individual changing rooms, and improved showering facilities by up rating the electric water heaters. The playing facilities have also been improved with regular pitch maintenance. Player abilities are continually rising with dedicated coaching staff and a greater wealth of training equipment. We have now played at our present ground for over thirty years, and inevitably the seasons have seen great games. We continue to strive for higher standards on and off the field and the current buzz around the club has readily increased playing numbers once more.

From humble beginnings we now have a lot to contemplate with pride, we have come a long way and Crusaders Rugby remains a club that welcomes all and will continue to do so.