Rugby football was played in Manilla in the late 1890s, Manilla District Football Club being founded in 1899. Permission was sought from the cricket club for use of their ground. Local businessmen donated the necessaries of a set of guernseys, a football and the use of a four-in-hand drag for transportation of players to away games. The club became affiliated with New England Rugby Union that year and participated in the Tamworth series of the junior competition. The club reformed on May 12 1900 at its adjourned first AGM. Prior to the 1st World War three local clubs fielded teams, the Standard, The Imperial and The Country Party clubs. During the war, the three amalgamated as the Patriotic Football Club. In November 1918, the members began organising a footballers' honour roll which became the centre of dispute in 1919. The Patriotic Football Club Honour Roll has since passed into the Community Collection and can now found in the Military room at Manilla Heritage Museum.




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