James Alfred Body England Rugby International 1872/1873

By Ivor Body

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James Alfred Body represented Tonbridge School X111. Formed the very successful London based Gipsies Club with three other Old Tonbridge old boys. Played for England XX a side in the 2nd Official rugby union match against Scotland at the London Oval 1872 and the 3rd at Hamilton Crescent Glasgow  1873.Photo issued under the Public Domain 70 year law and Common licence. Seated front row 2nd from left. Also see below:-

1868 saw the formation of the Brighton Shooflies under the guidance of W Stuckey (Major V.D.), F.C.Parsons (Liet-Col T.D.), and Charles
G.Boxhall (Colonel Sir Charles Boxhall). I have no doubt that the Shooflies were initially an army team as the above Gentleman were
serving in the 4th and 8th Field Artillery batteries based at Preston Barracks, Lewes Road, Brighton. Of personal interest, my local beer
hostelry The Bugle frequented by present Brighton Rugby players was built in the 1860s and was at that time the closest Public House to
the barracks. Therefore, I would like to think that the gentleman of the Shooflies partook in the odd tipple at the Bugle and that we are
continuing the tradition! In the same year J.B.Woolley (Captain of Brighton Schools in 1867) formed another Brighton
side The Wasps.
These two teams became great rivals and when they met quarter was neither given or asked. The season of 1873 saw The Shooflies beat
the The Wasps convincingly on two occasions. The last game was memorable when on ground sodden with melting snow. Mr G.C.Dill
come to blows with J.B.Woolley of The Wasps It was then that the Shooflies claimed and took the title The Brighton Football Club,
despite the protests of Mr J.A.Body of The Wasps. That team thereupon ceased to exist and the two clubs united (the same J.A.Body
played forward for England in 1872 and 1873, the first, but not the last international to come from Brighton FC!

This page was added on 15/07/2011.