John Pemberton who retired from playing rugby after over 1,000 games and took up refereeing is running the London Marathon to raise funds and awareness for the RFU Injured Players Foundation (IPF).

He says: “As an avid rugby player, I was very lucky in terms of injury and I barely missed a match. When I finished playing, to maintain my involvement I took up refereeing. I’m a member of the Manchester Society and referee at level 6, with most of my games in North West 1. Taking up running was a consequence of this as I needed to maintain a good level of fitness to handle these games.

“In the last few years, I have become aware of a couple of cases where players have received significant life changing injuries. I’ve also seen the great work that the foundation does, stepping in, at a moment’s notice to provide the support, both financial and emotional, that these players need on the long road ahead.

“I decided that during the 2018-19 season, I will do what I can to raise funds for the foundation so they can continue their good work into the future. As I travel round the clubs in the North West, I will be raising awareness of the IPF and promoting my run at the London Marathon in April 2019. Each Saturday, for training, I will run 10k in the morning (or referee a school match), referee a match in the afternoon, then run a further 5k round the pitch.”

You can donate towards John’s fundraising for the 2019 London Marathon at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/pemboipf

Inspired to take on your own challenge to support injured players? Places are still available in the IPF’s 2019 Vitality London 10,000 and Prudential Ride London 100 events. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.rfuipf.org.uk/get-involved to sign-up today.

Latest News

  • IPF Client voted Club Chairman

    Lee Jones, who was injured playing for his club Silhillians RFC in 2016 aged 35, was unanimously voted to be his club’s chairman at the most recent AGM.

    Read more

  • Royal Polo Day Benefits Injured Players

    When The Duke of Cambridge and The Duke of Sussex played in the 2019 King Power Royal Charity Polo Day, it was to raise awareness and funds for charities they support including the RFU’s Injured Players Foundation.

    Read more

  • Injured Player Conquers Vitality London 10k

    21 volunteers took on the Vitality London 10,000 as part of the IPF Team, including injured player Dani Watts who completed the race in a wheelchair alongside members of her rugby club, family and friends.

    Read more

Real Stories

  • KJ's Story

    "There wasn’t a single day that the IPF and the club weren’t there for me. It has made me appreciate rugby even more.”

    Read more

  • Jamie's Story

    “Life is not the same as it was but a million times better than it could have been."

    Read more

  • Jack's Story

    "The most important thing has been the personal approach, the IPF became our extended family.”

    Read more