A Brief History
The Welsh Conference was founded in 2003 following the success of Cardiff Demons in the English Conference system, where they had competed since 2001, and the desire to spread the game across South Wales.
A meeting was held at Bridgend Town FC in the winter of 2003, chaired by Danny Sheehy, where representatives from a number of potential clubs attended.
Six teams competed in that first season – Aberavon Fighting Irish, Bridgend Blue Bulls, Cynon Valley Cougars, Rumney Rhinos, Swansea Bulls and Torfaen Tigers with the Cougars and Tigers playing in the first game.
Cardiff elected to stay in the South West of England Conference for that first season to let the other clubs settle in, but when they faced Aberavon and Bridgend in the national play-offs, they were beaten in both games. They transferred to the Welsh Conference in 2004.
The first Grand Final wasn’t marketed as such, it was merely a South Wales and West play-off to decide a national semi-final place for a competition known as the Harry Jepson trophy. Bridgend won that match and ended up winning the Harry Jepson trophy, a feat they would echo two years later on their own turf.
The Welsh Conference has seen a number of formats over the years and has been regionalised with a competition also set up in North Wales but it still remains a strong tournament and has led to a number of players turning professional.
WELSH GRAND FINALS
2003 Bridgend Blue Bulls 42 Aberavon Fighting Irish 8
2004 Bridgend Blue Bulls 26 Aberavon Fighting Irish 21
2005 Bridgend Blue Bulls 56 Torfaen Tigers 16
2006 Bridgend Blue Bulls 22 Cardiff Demons 10
2007 Bridgend Blue Bulls 24 Newport Titans 18
2008 Valley Cougars 26 Blackwood Bulldogs 12
2009 Blackwood Bulldogs 38 Bridgend Blue Bulls 22
2010 Valley Cougars 46 Bridgend Blue Bulls 44
2011 Bridgend Blue Bulls 48 Valley Cougars 24
2012 Bonymaen Broncos 46 Bridgend Blue Bulls 28
2013 Torfaen Tigers 24 Valley Cougars 18
2014 Bridgend Blue Bulls 33 Aber Valley Wolves 30
2015 Bridgend Blue Bulls 34 Aber Valley Wolves 30
2016 Bridgend Blue Bulls 32 Aber Valley Wolves 28
2017 Valley Cougars 32 Torfaen Tigers 18
2018 Valley Cougars 28 Torfaen Tigers 12
WELSH CONFERENCE GRAND FINALS (NORTH WALES)
CONFERENCE NATIONAL / SOUTH FINALS (WELSH APPEARANCES)
28th September 2008 Celtic Crusaders Colts 26 Bramley Buffaloes 4
20th September 2014 Valley Cougars 19 Sheffield Hallam Eagles 10
19th September 2015 Valley Cougars 16 Nottingham Outlaws 39
17th September 2016 Valley Cougars 0 London Chargers 42