There’s more to the Rugby World Cup 2015 than just watching the game. Check out the wide range of activities happening in South West London during the tournament from a barre workout and celebrities pulling pints to special festivals and menu offers
1 Meet a celebrity
Young’s pubs are giving you the chance to have your pint pulled by rugby heroes Tim Stimpson and Ollie Phillips at South West London pubs until the end of October. The sporting legends will be pouring Young’s real ales and craft beers before taking part in a Q&A and regaling punters with stories over a three-course meal of seasonal British dishes. The fundraiser is in aid of Wooden Spoon, the children’s charity of rugby, which supports disadvantaged kids with education and vocational training opportunities. Tickets can be purchased from each pub by contacting each pub directly.
29 September with Tim Stimpson at Duke’s Head, Putney, dukesheadputney.co.uk
6 October with Ollie Phillips at The Ship, Wandsworth, theship.co.uk
13 October with Tim Stimpson at Coach & Horses, Kew, coachhotelkew.co.uk
20 October with Tim Stimpson at Old Ship, W6, oldshipw6.com
To book your ticket or find out further information, visit youngs.co.uk
2 Watch England vs. Australia with Andy Goode
If one celebrity outing isn’t enough, Geronimo Inns is offering you the chance to sit down with former England fly-half – and now professionally-retired rugby player – Andy Goode at The Northcote pub on 3 October. The evening of the England vs. Australia match will involve a greet on arrival by Andy, followed by a three-course dinner, Q&A and fundraising raffle before kick-off starts at 8pm. Tickets are £30 per person, and £5 of each ticket will be donated to the Wooden Spoon charity. The evening runs from 5pm-10pm at The Northcote, 2 Northcote Road, Battersea SW11 1NT.
To book your ticket, contact the Northcote team on 020 7223 5378 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
3 Eat around the world with Hilton’s World Cup menu
You may be supporting the England Rugby team, but that doesn’t mean you can’t chew on an Argentinian sirloin steak or delve into a French beef bourguignon while you do so. Hilton is encouraging fans to try world flavours and celebrate different cultures with an internationally-inspired menu available at its hotels during the tournament. The line-up includes US burgers, South African boerewors rolls and Italian pizzas. There is a British Abbots Ale and steak pie and traditional fish and chips for diners who are feeling particularly patriotic. Each main dish starts from £10 and there will also be a selection of bar nibbles – BBQ chicken wings, jerk pork spare ribs, traditional English pork scratchings, pretzels, wasabi peas and popcorn – and a drinks menu that traverses the globe. The menu will be available at many of Hilton’s hotels including Syon Park.
For booking information and further details visit londonsyonpark.com
4 Go for glitz and glamour at Fulham’s Rugby on the Green
Party animals and dancing divas, this one is for you: Rugby on the Green will offer ‘box office’ seats and a glamorous festival alternative to congested pub screenings this October. Eight scheduled events, split between Fulham Palace’s Private Gardens and Parsons Green will offer ticket-only guests access to Mahiki resident DJs and live screenings of the rugby matches, with a different theme for each weekend. Entry includes a complimentary drink and a free guest rain-proof poncho, plus there will be boutique pop-up stores, a secret cinema screening, live music, musicians, a silent disco, premium brand give-aways, renowned craft beers, a master rugby and skills zone, and an experiential gaming zone.
Ticket prices start from £32.50 for a general admission day pass. Visit rugbyonthegreen.com
5 Get fit with with Barreworks
Richmond’s ballet-inspired fitness school Barreworks wants you to get off the couch for the Rugby World Cup with a number of special events and a photo competition. New joiners can get their first lesson for £10 if they book during the Rugby World Cup using promo code #trythebarre while existing attendees who turn up on match days wearing an England rugby shirt will get a free pack of Barreworks energy balls. And if you strike a ballet pose in front of one of the local giant rugby balls in the area and share it on social media using #trythebarre you could win a Home WorkOut Kit, (which includes a resistance band, soft red ball and grippy socks) and a free online WorkOut from the comfort of your home.
Visit barreworks.co.uk for more infomation
6 Drink up at a beer festival
Nicholson’s pubs are holding a Rugby Ale Festival from 18 September-4 October to celebrate the Rugby World Cup and National Cask Ale Week. A selection of exclusive beers will be on offer including a number created by brewers in an improvised brewing session earlier this year. The specially-chosen brewers were asked to create beers from a ‘blind’ selection of ingredients and parameters including ‘Style’, ‘ABV Range’ and ‘Continent’, resulting in six innovative beers that reflect the continents of the competing rugby nations. In addition, a further six cask ales will be served that have yet to be introduced at Nicholson’s pubs. Anyone downloading or using the Nicholsons’s Hop Circle App during the festival will get a free pint at the start of the festivities. Once in the app, drinkers will be able to feedback on the exclusive brews and vote for their favourite to return later on in the year.
Visit nicholsonspubs.co.uk to find out more about the event and find your local Nicholson’s pub.
7 Attend the lavish Rugby Captain’s Dinner
At the high-end scale of events is this plush evening featuring a host of England internationals past and present including Ben Kay, Tom Croft, Alex Corbisiero, Martin Bayfield as well as RFU official anthem singer, mezzo-soprano Laura Wright. At this VIP event, guests will get to grace the red carpet before entering inside where they will be poured a pint of Guinness by former rugby union player Ben Kay. After a chance to mingle with the rugby stars, Laura Wright will take centre stage to perform Sweet Rose, before a 18-strong military band leads people to their dinner tables, each one hosted by a former international rugby player. The three-course dinner has been designed by Michelin-starred chef Angela Hartnett OBE. Several table packages are available starting from £2,490 + VAT per table of ten. 10% of all tickets purchased, plus all fundraising for the evening, will be donated to Restart the Rugby Players’ Association charity and children’s charity, Willow.
For further information and to book tickets, visit rugbycaptainsdinner.co.uk