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Club History

In the first season after the merger Birmingham & Solihull gained promotion from Midlands Division One to the National Leagues only to go straight back down.

They returned to the National Leagues for the 1993/94 season in 1997/98 won the Jewson National League Two North title and promotion.

“The Bees” as the Club was known took time to adjust to demands of rugby in Jewson National Division One, suffering six defeats in their last seven games they sat just above relegation by the end of the 1998/99 season.

Paul Williams and Dave Spencer formed a new coaching team in 1999/2000 and following a 0-18 home defeat by Harrogate on the opening Saturday of that season the Bees registered nine consecutive league victories. After a mid-term stutter during which three games out of four were lost, including two to Otley, the Bees finished with eleven wins and a draw from the last twelve fixtures to secure the Jewson National League One runners-up spot and second promotion place, two points behind winners, Otley.

Again the step up proved difficult and the Bees needed to win one of their last two games of the 200/01 season to be sure of staying in the renamed National Division One. This they did and then consolidated their position by finishing mid-table in 2001/02.

In 2002/03 Phil Maynard was appointed Director of Rugby and the club was guided to another mid-table position and then improved on that when the club finished fourth in 2003/04 despite only winning one and drawing one of the last eight league games, no doubt having been distracted by reaching the semi-finals of the Powergen Cup, knocking out London Wasps along the way.

2004/05 followed a similar pattern to the previous season with the Bees the early pace-setters after taking maximum points from the first five league games, but, not helped by nine successive defeats before a victory came on the final day of the season, they eventually finished ninth, disappointingly.

Only the decision to increase the size of National Division One from fourteen to sixteen clubs (and to suspend relegation) saved the Bees in 2005/06 after they finished bottom of the league having accrued just six wins.

The following year the Bees bounced back again however, this time finishing mid-table and ahead of Midland rivals, Coventry, Moseley and Nottingham - a forged relationship with Gloucester paying dividends: the likes of John Goodridge, Mark Cornwell and Will Matthews all contributing. Bees' top try scorer Akapusi Quera [with a fantastic 16 tries from the flank] exited stage left after a wonderful World Cup peaked the interest of Gloucester's Cherry and Whites.

2007/08 was the 'nearly year' in many respects, difficult to believe as Bees finished last but one, however it's commonly quipped that had the game been just sixty as opposed to eighty minutes long Bees would have been half way up the leader board by the end of the season. A number of changes to the coaching staff - notably resignations form Ben Harvey and then Steve Williams - saw the eventual arrival of Russell Earnshaw, initially as a forwards coach.

His leadership skills became quickly evident when he almost performed the miracle of miracles in keeping Bees in National Division One (but for results elsewhere, on the final day of the season.) Controversy ensued following "Sub-Gate" (after Cornish Pirates failed to field appropriate front row players and were docked points whilst Bees were awarded none). With the RFU and First Division Rugby involved and with Coventry's financial affairs in disarray Bees held out hope for a relegation appeal, but four months on hope was extinguished and Bees were confirmed as a National Division Two side.

Knowing where they stood ahead of 2008/09 Earnshaw, now promoted to Head Coach, went about assembling the right group of people for the task ahead. With an exciting brand of rugby adopted, Bees, despite early knocks from Redruth and Wharfedale, notched up the wins and club and division records along the way to fulfill the single promotion spot with a game to spare. That they scored 150 points more than any other team, taking twenty-one four-try bonus points from twenty-six league games, and ran National One's Leeds Carnegie close to a semi-final birth in the EDF Energy National Trophy made it a vintage rugby year for Birmingham & Solihull.

Where next?

Pre 1989 As noted in the Overview, Birmingham & Solihull Rugby Club was the result on the merger of two clubs
2009 -2017 2009/10 RFU Championship The 2009/10 Championship season brought about tough challenges on and of

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