W K L (“Bill”) Relph

The death of the rugby club’s oldest surviving rugby internationalist Bill Relph at the age of 94 on 18th January 2023 has been reported.

Bill attended Daniel Stewart’s College playing in the school first XV from 1945-47, being pack leader in both seasons and made his FP 1st XV debut in 1951.

In 1953, and, again, the following year, he represented Edinburgh against Northumberland , while his breakthrough international season of 1954-55 also saw him hook for the capital in inter-district matches against the South and Glasgow, and play in three Murrayfield international trials.

As well as winning four caps for Scotland throughout the 1955 Five Nations Championship he was captain of the FP Rugby side which won the “unofficial” Scottish Rugby Club Championship in season 1957-58.

He made his debut against France away but his first international appearance at Murrayfield was a landmark occasion. The 14-8 victory over Wales on 5 February 1955, marked Scotland’s first win after a sequence of 17 successive defeats. And he followed that up three weeks later by sharing in the national team’s 12-3 triumph against Ireland. His final Scotland cap was in a narrow 6-9 loss against England at Twickenham. In 1956 he had Melrose Sevens success with the club before the club’s championship success of 1957-58 when 19 of 22 counting games were won.

In his later years he lived in Southport.