Published December 13, 2020
Weymouth and Portland Rugby Club were deeply saddened to hear that one of their ex-players and Channel Swimmer Greg Schofield has passed away.
Only last year Greg celebrated his 75th birthday at the Monmouth Avenue Club House and reminisced about his Weymouth Rugby playing days when he regularly featured in the front row of the scrum alongside two other local Channel Swimmers Philip Gollop and Merv Sharp. A unique partnership!
Greg particularly enjoyed the Club’s End of Season Rugby Tours when the Club travelled by boat to Guernsey because these involved playing two games followed by lots of singing. He enjoyed helping behind the bar to keep everyone’s whistle wet!
Greg worked as a Contracts Manager in the building industry until a change of direction took him into politics as a Party-Political Agent. In 1976 he went to University obtained a degree in History and became a teacher at Royal Grammar School Guildford where he became involved in coaching of rugby.
Greg had many wide-ranging interests he was also a banjo player and singer of some note. In recent years he become a much-respected Weymouth Historian and has written many interesting articles several of which have been published in the Dorset Echo.
Greg successfully swam the Channel in August 1964 at the age of 20 with a time of 15.35 and the following year he broke the then 14-year-old record for the 20 mile “Weymouth to Lulworth Cove and Return” swim with a time of 10.40.
He will be greatly missed and the Club sends its condolences to his family.
Words by Richard Wildash.
Dorset & Wilts RFU Press Officer Idris Martin added,
“I played alongside Greg many times during the 1970’s & 80’s for Weymouth’s social xv, the Pirates & Greg was a larger-than-life character.
“He was the club’s choir master and his knowledge of rugby songs was infamous throughout the rugby clubs of Dorset who always enjoyed a visit from the Pirates xv because they knew that a sing song would always develop in the bar after the game. On long away trips he would take his banjo onto the coach and again lead the singing on the long drive back to Weymouth.
“Greg played alongside two other Pirates players, Des Quick and Simon Frampton in the folk band Arish Mell who could be heard in the Kings Arms most Sunday evenings again during the 1970’s & 80’s.
“I would like on behalf of all of the members of Weymouth & Portland Rugby Club to express their condolences to his family & friends.”