A Premiership Rugby Union team, the Newcastle Falcons train and play at Kingston Park, close to the centre of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.
The Newcastle Falcons were formed as Gosforth Football Club in 1877 by a group of Old Boys from the famous Durham School, merging with a team from Northumberland in 1882. Up until the mid 1950s, the club had little success beyond local matches and no permanent home and, after serious losses in club membership brought about by the two world wars, the Gosforth club came close to disbanding.
During the late 1940s, major fundraising efforts were made by Gosforth officials to purchase grounds for the club and. after raising £10,000, the club moved to North Road in 1955, which remained its home until 1990. Following the club’s move to North Road, Gosforth’s profile was raised and the team’s performance improved at both a local and national level. During the 1970s, Jack Rowell captained the club and the Newcastle team saw some of their most successful matches to date, marked when they won two John Player Cups (now sponsored by Powergen), beating Rosslyn Park 23-14 in 1976 and defending the title in 1977 after a 27-14 victory against Waterloo.
Despite reaching the final round against Leicester in the 1981 John Player Cup, Gosforth failed to triumph for a third time, and the 1980s brought little success for the Newcastle team. In 1990, after forty five years at North Road, Gosforth sold the grounds for financial reasons and moved to their current (and much cheaper) home at Kingston Park. Following the move, the club’s name was changed to Newcastle Gosforth, with Gosforth Rugby Club continuing to play as an amateur team. In 1992/3, Newcastle came top of division two and, in 1995, after the appointment of Rob Andrew (former captain of the London Wasps) as ‘Director of Rugby, the team were promoted to the Guinness Premiership for the following season.
In 1995, following a number of financially unstable years, Newcastle businessman Sir John Hall secured the club’s finances by forming a Newcastle sporting club which encompassed the football, ice hockey, basketball and rugby union team. With John Hall’s financial backing of the four sports, Newcastle became the first fully professional rugby union in the world. The new professionalism of the club saw Newcastle Gosforth being renamed the Newcastle Falcons and the old green and white colours which the team had played in since its inauguration in 1877 replaced by the team’s current black and white stripes.
At the end of the 1997/98 season, just one year after their promotion to the Premiership, the Falcons wowed fans and took the Premiership title. Following their success, John Hall sold the club in 1999 but the team continued to perform well, winning the 2001 and 2004 Powergen Cups. In August 2006, Rob Andrew left the Falcons to be in charge of the set-up for the 2007 world cup, and John Fletcher replaced Andrew as the Falcons’ Director of Rugby. Part way through the current season, the Falcons are placed mid-table but, with a strong team which includes England-players Jonny Wilkinson and Matthew Tait, fans are convinced that it won’t be long before the Newcastle Falcons top the premiership again.
For their first century as a club Newcastle enjoyed little success, but since the mid-1970s the team have played to victory on a number of occasions:
- Guinness Premiership: 1997/98
- Division Two: 1992/93
- National Cup (currently sponsored by Powergen): 1976, 1977, 2001, 2004.
Tickets for Falcons matches can be pre-ordered through the ticket office on 0871 226 60 60 at the following prices:
West Stand Seats (Category A)
West Stand Seats (Category B1)
West Stand Seats (Category B2)
West Stand Seats (Category C)
South Stand Terrace (Standing)
North Stand Terrace (Standing)
Directions to Kingston Park are as follows:
Leave the A1 Western Bypass at Junction 6 (signposted Newcastle airport) and follow signs for Kingston Park on the B6918. Continue straight over two roundabouts and, after going under a bridge, turn right on to Brunton Road. The stadium is approximately 300 metres along the road on the left hand side.
Kingston Park is easily accessible from Newcastle International airport, which is served by numerous regional and international airlines. From the airport roundabout, take the first exit left, following signs for the B6918. After approximately 2 miles, turn left up Brunton road and the stadium is approximately 300 metres along the road on the left hand side. Alternatively, taxis are easily available from outside the airport and the Metro goes from the airport to Kingston Park station which is a short, well-signposted walk from the stadium.
Kingston Park is well served by regular bus services which travel between Newcastle City Centre and the stadium. Alternatively, it is a short Metro journey from Gallowgate bus station to the stadium. From Gallowgate, take a Metro to ‘Monument’ and then change to a Metro marked airport. Kingston Park station is 9 stops on the Metro and the stadium is a short, well-signposted walk from the station.
For information about matches or for general enquiries contact the Falcons at:
Kenton Bank Foot
Newcastle-Upon-Tyne NE13 8AF.
Tel: 0191 214 5588
Web: Newcastle Falcons