The NSW Police Rugby League Football Association, began in the early sixties when a social but not organised Rugby League Competition was conducted in the Metropolitan area, between Police teams from 21 Division, C.I.B, Glebe, Mounted Police and Academy staff, Darlinghurst, Parramatta, Burwood, Liverpool, Petersham and the Traffic Office taking part. Many teams over the years went through the Police competition undefeated but no records were kept in the early days. One such team, Petersham was undefeated in 1968 and 1969.
During the early days the Police Department only recognised Rugby Union as an official Police sport, with the exception of Police Rugby league teams, participating in the Public Service Competition at the Old Domain. It became apparent that the recognised Police Rugby team mainly comprised of Police Rugby League players from the Sydney grade competition and also from the social competition.
DELEGATES DECIDE ON OFFICIAL COMPETITION
In September 1968, teams competing in the social matches sent delegates to a meeting in the C.I.B. auditorium where it was decided to form an official competition. Those who attended this meeting included former Inspector's Pat Gib and Albie Southern, Messrs. Jim Bowen, Gordon Bartholomew, Frank Anderson, Bill Tout, Gordon Talbot, John Young, Jim Simmonds, Jim Brazil, Barry Collins, George Patterson, John O'Hara and Tony Edwards.
A working executive was elected comprising Chairman, Pat Gibb; Vice Chair Chairmen, Jim Armstrong and Bill Tout; Secretary, Barry Collins; Treasurer, George Patterson; Committee, Jim Simmonds, Gordon Talbot, Jim Bowen and Jim Brazil. In 1969 Pat Gibb retired and Jim Armstrong replaced him. Many meetings were held and a constitution and set of rules drawn up that were acceptable to all competing teams. This information was forwarded to the then Commissioner Allen in late 1969 and he subsequently sanctioned the conducting of a League competition. The NSW Police Department recognised that, any injuries occasioned to participant's playing in the competition as 'Hurt on Duty', as they perceived that Police Officers competing in such a competition would increase their fitness as a result of the associated training an playing, in such a competition.
In February1970, the first official Rugby League Football Association meeting was held at the NSW Police Academy, and the following executive elected: President-Bill Tout; Vice Presiden's-Jim Bowen and Jim Armstrong; Secretary-Barry Collins; Treasurer-George Patterson; Committee-Gordon Batholomew, Tony Edwards, Jim Simmonds, Jim Brazil, Doug Bell and Frank Owens.
The first year of representative Police Rugby League was held in 1972 when, due to a vast amount of work done by the late Bill Tout. allowed a NSW Police Rugby League representative team to play Canberra Police. Peter Ryan, Mick Craft and Bill Beale were A.C.T. Police instrumental in organising with the NSW delegates, to get this game off the ground. In the same year a team led by former first grade referee Kevin Roberts travelled to Brisbane and played a Queensland Police Team. Ray Kelly from the Brisbane Traffic Office became the contact up north. Kevin Robert's team travelled to Brisbane by train that year. These games against Brisbane continued until 1976.
In 1973 Bob Aldridge became Vice Presiden and Jim Bowen and Lloyd Taylor Secretaries with Mick Kelso Tresurer. In 1973 the NSW Police Representative side flew to Brisbane for the first time and successfully defeated the Queensland Poice team.
In 1974 the Executive remained the same, however, Bill Comans became Secretary/Treasurer, Jim Pyne joined the Committee.
F.J. HANSEN SHIELD
Named after the Commissioner Fred Hansen, the F.J. Hansen Shield became the Shield presented to the winners of the NSW Police Rugby League competition. Jack Riordon, on behalf of the South Sydney Leagues Club presented this Shield for the Competition. The first teams nominated were Regent Street (later to become Balmain), Darlinghurst, Daceyville, Paddington, Sutherland, Burwood, Redfern, Traffic Office, Liverpool, Parramatta and Bankstown. The NSW Police Competition commenced in Apri 1970, and the first game was played at Cumberland Oval (now Parramatta Stadium), between Parramatta and Regent Street. Regent Street won this game 14-12. That year rain fell early in the year, with the remainder of the year experiencing drought condiditons. This weather trend resulted in the grounds being as hard as 'concrete' and due to the large number of injuries, the then Metropolitan Superintendent Ernie Lynch suspended the competition. The executive awarded the Shield to the Sutherland team coached by Graham Orchard, as they were leading the competition prior to the suspension of it.
BOB ALDRIDGE SHIELD
iN 1975 Bob Aldridge, a stalwart of the NSW Police Rugby League passed away. His widow Pat and daughter Sally donated a Shield in his memory. Known as 'The Bob Aldridge Shield' it was awarded to the player who scored the most number of points during the season.
Recipients to be advised.
BILL TOUT 'ROOKIE OF THE YEAR' AWARD
Rex King donated the 'Bill Tout Rookie of the Year Award'.
Recipents to be advised.
The representative games expanded to international level when in 1978 a squad of twenty NSW Police officers, travelled to New Zealand to represent the NSW Police Force against the New Zealand Police Force. The first game played in NZ resulted in a 21-14 victory for NSW who were coached by the well respected 'Dinger' Bell. These games continued and on the consecutive year NZ travelled to Australia where in 1979 the NZ and NSW Police representative teams played for the first time on Australian soil at Redfern oval. NSW were victors 27-15.