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Becoming a Referee


Referees provide a vital function in servicing all levels of the game. Refereeing is a fantastic hobby. Weather you have aspirations to referee at the highest level or referee underage rugby in your area the enjoyment factor and the benefits are great.

Becoming a Referee

Benefits to you:
– Stay involved in the game
– Keep fit
– Learn more about the game
– Referee locally, provincially or nationally
– Make new friends
– Referee Association / Society Membership
– Access to gear

Benefits to the game and the players:
– Safe and controlled
– Structured
– Neutral Referees
– Enhanced playing experience
– Values of the game are maintained

Steps to becoming a referee

If interested you should make contact with the referee development manager / officer in your province (details below). He will talk you though the process in detail and let you know when the next available recruits course in set to take place.

The new recruits course is a daylong course and on completion participants can apply to become members of their provincial referee association / society. Beginner referees will receive ongoing mentoring and development support. Progression is purely based on ability and commitment.

Ideal candidates should:
– Be reasonably fit
– Have a good understanding of the game
– Be available to commit to at least 15 games per season

I only want to referee in my own club or school

Should you only wish to referee matches involving your own club or school then the Club and School Affiliate Referee Scheme is best suited to you. Details on the scheme can be found here.

Courses are run throughout the season. Details on upcoming courses in your area are available on your provincial branch website.

IRFU Referee Department

Dudley Phillips – Head of Referees

David Wilkinson – National Referee Manager

Neysa Herity – Referee Coordinator

Julie Moran – Referee Coordinator

IRFU Referee Development Staff

Peter Fitzgibbon – Connacht
Referee Development / Education Manager
086 8322987

Sean Gallagher – Leinster
High Performance Referee
086 1003985

Chris Harrington – Munster
Referee Development Manager
087 2750586

Richard Kerr – Ulster
Referee Development Manager
00 44 (0) 7493868388