Fiona Stockley appointed to Barbarian Committee

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Barbarian F.C. is delighted to announce the appointment of the first female Committee member, with Fiona Stockley nominated to the team of stewards for the world-famous invitational Club. 

Stockley comes with nearly 30 years experience in rugby as a player and administrator. Starting her playing career at London Welsh, she went onto play for Newbury and Harlequins before joining Wasps FC in 2000 and playing for the Wasps Ladies 1s XV. She has also played for the England Select, England A and England Academy.

She was the driving force of a major and historical moment in Barbarians history: the creation of the Barbarians Women’s side, presiding over the inaugural match at Thomond Park in 2017 and every fixture since. 

She joins President John Spencer, Secretary Chris Maidment, Treasurer Bill Brown and fellow Committee members Mike Burton, Gareth Davies, Shane Jennings, Rory Lawson, Rory Best and François Louw.

Having been part of the fabric at Wasps Ladies for over two decades as both a player and administrator, an introduction to Barbarians Committee Member Mike Burton by England international Abi Chamberlain led to chance discussion – which, as Stockley says, “lasted for just over two years to the point where the Committee agreed to the inaugural Women’s Barbarians fixture and financial support to create squads for two to three fixtures each season.”

In addition to the support received by the Committee, the Barbarians and Stockley sought to integrate the women into the continuing Roll of Honour in the Club – which now features Rocky Clark, Lenaig Corson, Katy Daly-Mclean, Giselle Mather, Jo Yapp, Noli Waterman, Jas Joyce, Sene Naoupu, Steph Te Ohaere-Fox and Tamara Taylor, amongst many other world-class and world-famous names.

Barbarians Women have gone onto play Wales, England, the USA and South Africa – including two double headers with the men’s side at Twickenham and the Principality Stadium – and featured players from more than 12 different countries. 

Stockely has also been recently appointed as a Patron of Rugby School ahead of the school’s celebrations of the 200th anniversary of the creation of the game – alongside a host of rugby royalty including Maggie Alphonsi, Nigel Owens, Lawrence Dallaglio and Sarah Hunter – and is a Trustee of the Atlas Foundation, founded by Jason Leonard.

Stockley said: “I am honoured and excited to join Barbarian F.C.’s Committee – and to be the first-ever woman to serve. 

“This demonstrates again the Barbarians’ continued commitment to the women’s game. The establishment of the women’s team was a huge step forward and, despite the challenges of Covid and getting the game back on its feet, we have made great strides in developing the side and creating even more Barbarians legends. 

“It is a huge responsibility to join the Committee and contribute to driving this great Club onwards and into the future of the game. As part of the Committee, I will bring the knowledge I have gained with my rugby history alongside my commercial background in professional sport and as a senior leader in the NHS. 

“This opportunity will allow me to bring a range of perspectives to the Committee and of course my experiences of three decades of development within women's sport. The Committee have wholeheartedly welcomed me to share these skills with them and we all hope the breadth of the membership in the Committee will allow us as a group to maintain the rich history of the Club while continuing to hold its incredibly valuable place within the fabric of global rugby.

“This is a wonderful Club of which I am already very proud to have played a part. I want to ensure there are more opportunities than ever to showcase our unique playing style, bring female stars to the attention of the wider public and create role models for young players.”

President of Barbarian F.C. John Spencer said: “We are absolutely delighted to have Fiona join the Committee. A real star of rugby – both as a player and administrator – she brings significant experience and, more importantly, Barbarians values.

“Those values of flair, courage, spirit and passion – and, crucially, friendship and enjoyment – have been evident in every single Barbarians Women’s squad Fiona has brought together, and created a vital new pathway for this historic club.

“It is not just on the women’s side that Fiona will contribute enormously however. Her experience in rugby extends back almost 30 years and the passion and knowledge she brings to the Committee will be warmly welcomed and much appreciated.

“Alongside her endless enthusiasm and positive drive, we know she is going to be an integral part of moving the Barbarians forward.”