The inspiration to form Helsinki RFC came - appropriately enough - during some rugby discussions over a few pints in Molly Malone’s Irish Bar in Helsinki between some rugby friends in 1999.
The club logo shows the nationalities involved in the formation of the club: Finnish, English, French, South African and Australian. The club colors are taken from the Finnish Flag, blue and white.
Then over the course of the following few months Helsinki-its were treated to the sight of some people throwing the beautifully-shaped rugby ball around Kaivopuisto, even though there was still snow on the ground. Well, as we all know, rugby players are made of more than just sugar. The numbers began to swell so we moved to Pasila where we began to train on a regular basis. Our fond memories of these early days include bald pitches, horrible grass, uneven surfaces and our wonderful only honorary member, Jim McLoughlin. Jim had the honor of being our first official coach and he made us familiar with real forwards-rugby - and especially its spirit in full ("When does a forward kick the ball ?")
In our first season, Helsinki Rugby FC played one game, which we narrowly lost to a representative from our western neighbors in Sweden - but, anyway, we had the honor of scoring our first ever try, at least. We were in business.
In the year 2000, we were granted our first official home ground in Myllypuro by the Helsinki City Council. In addition, our British gentleman coach retired and was replaced by a rugby-loving Frenchman, Thierry Demoulin.
The season 2000 was a very historic one for us as we defeated the rugby team from the British Navy ship HMS Sheffield. We also took part in the Stockholm 10`s Tournament for the first time and we organized our own Baltic Plate Tournament.
The season 2001 was active in terms of games played but we were still on the learning curve when it came to getting the victories. However, that, of course, tells only part of the complete picture as we had a very active social calendar and lots of fun off the field as well.
The season ended on a high note with the Baltic Plate Tournament where we confirmed our position as the top club in the country.
The season 2002 began with a very ambitious programmed of 17 games, including the first-ever Finnish national Championship. Our new home is now moving to the western suburbs of Helsinki in Tali where we brought the first Finnish Championship home to Helsinki RFC.
During 2002 the international match Norway vs Finland was played, and Helsinki Rugby FC was very proud to have 9 members on the Finnish National team.
2003 started with a tour to Sweden to sharpen us up, followed by a match against Cheltenham RFC from the UK who were on Tour themselves.
Both of these have been good warm ups for the Finnish Cup and League. Helsinki fielded a first and second XV. The first team went through to win both the knockout cup and the league championship.
Peter Eagling stepped down from his Chairman position, Janne Turunen being elected afterwards. Peter Eagling became the second "life time honorary member", after Jim McLoughlin.
The first ever real tour abroad - In Riga, Latvia - celebrated the beginning of 2004 season.
For the second official Finnish Championship, all the Finnish clubs lifted their level. The first game being played against the neighbours Warriors without our internationals let a bitter taste, but the team got its first win, followed by a second one against Oulu. A lost game against Turku Eagles early in the summer rung as a wake up call! This loss being followed by another one against Tampere on Tali field, and a 3rd one in Jyväskylä, the players had their backs against the wall. They managed to overcome Tampere on their field though, letting a door open to a place in the final. That’s what happened, thanks to Oulu beating Tampere.
The first international game in Finland - between Finland and Bulgaria - was successfully organised by the club. 6 players of the club were part of the team this day.
The final against Jyväskylä was played on Myllypuro pitch, and unlike the previous year, they came out with a clear victory.
2005 started with a tour in Tallinn, the newly reborn Women’s team along along with the men’s team.
We saw the first "kick off event" organised, Mr Ari Vatanen becoming the "Godfather" of the club. During the evening, Thierry Demoulin has been awarded "life time honorary member", third in the club.
After 3 games, the team was collecting 3 nice wins (Oulu, Turku, Tampere)