About us

History of the Society

The history of the Society is summarised by referring to some events to demonstrate the permanence and sustainability of the Society over almost a century.

1904: The Pretoria Rugby Referees’ Society was formed as part of the Transvaal Rugby Referees’ Society.

1938: The Northern Transvaal Rugby Referees’ Society was formed with 40 active referees.

1950: The Constitution underwent some changes and was translated into Afrikaans for the first time.

1956: The Constitution changed again, and the executive now consists of a Chairman, Vince-chairman, Secretary and 3 Additional members.

1958: The Referees had to wear a blue shirt and dark blue shorts from now on while blue Rugby socks were introduced in 1959. The blue shirt of the Referees was replaced by a blue Rugby jersey in 1966.

1967: The Society ended the year with 70 active Referees. Far Northern Transvaal became a Union on their own, with their own Referees. Rustenburg became part of Western Transvaal, Ermelo and Bethal part of Eastern Transvaal.

1972: The referees of the Society wrote examinations on the Laws of Rugby for the first time in the history of the Society.

1977: Subscriptions were introduced for the first time and it was set on R12.00 per year.

1978: The Northern Transvaal rugby Union made its first travel allowance payment to the Society, the amount was R3000.00. The Constitution was changed so that the Society could administer its own finances.

1982: The honoraria of the secretary and the assistant secretary were R786.00 in total.

1984: The dark blue jersey of the Referee was introduced.

1998: The first full time official of the Society was appointed and is currently in the employ of the Blue Bulls Union responsible for referee affairs while a games secretary to administer appointments was appointed and paid for by the Society. The name of The Blue Bulls Rugby Referees’ Society.

2004 - 2009: Dr. Oscar Somers became chairperson of the Society.

2010 - 2011: Gerhard Roodt became chairperson of the Society.

2013: Jan Venter became the Referee Manager.

2012 - 2017: Gerhard van Niekerk became chairperson of the Society.

2018 - 2019 March: Sarel Botha became chairperson of the Society.


2019 June: Jan Venter re-sign due to retrenchment as Referee Manager

How to get started

Do you have a passion for rugby. The Society is responsible for the recruitment, training and grading of referees, and their appointment to all sanctioned games that fall under its jurisdiction, primarily at club level but also school games.

Contact Andre Botha – 083 737 3177 (Training/Education/New Recruits) – andrebotha99@gmail.com