- England set to host biggest ever celebration of women’s rugby
- Cities the length and breadth of England mark two years to go until Rugby World Cup 2025 kicks off
- Excitement builds with the 10th edition of the women’s pinnacle global tournament set to take place between 22 August and 27 September 2025
- Selection of cities and venues, represents the core vision to create a celebration of women's rugby across England
- New standards set for 2025 with teams increased from 12 to 16 as women’s participation accelerates around the globe
From one exhilarating Women’s World Cup to another, there are exactly two years to go until women’s rugby takes centre stage as England hosts Rugby World Cup 2025.
World Rugby and the RFU, with support from the UK Government, have confirmed the host cities, venues and tournament dates that will provide the stage for the biggest-ever celebration of women’s rugby.
Kicking off on 22 August and concluding with the Rugby World Cup final, on 27 September, the 10th edition of the showcase event will be the most accessible ever. The countrywide format means an unparalleled opportunity to see, engage with and support the stars of the women’s game.
Following a competitive selection process, the final roster of host cities and venues reflects the tournament’s core mission of growing the sport, taking rugby across the country and engaging with diverse communities. All will provide a family-focused festival of rugby.
For the first time ever, the elite women’s rugby tournament will be hosted across eight venues and cities around the country with 16 teams competing to be crowned world champions.
The biggest-ever celebration of women’s rugby – the host cities and venues
- Brighton and Hove – Brighton and Hove Albion Stadium
- Bristol – Ashton Gate
- Exeter – Sandy Park
- London – Twickenham Stadium
- Manchester – Salford Community Stadium
- Northampton – Franklin’s Gardens
- Sunderland – Stadium of Light
- York – York Community Stadium
While the full match schedule and ticketing details will be announced next year, the milestone two-year celebration and confirmation of dates and venues provides the ability for fans across England to start to plan their Rugby World Cup 2025 experience.
Canada, England, France and New Zealand have already qualified for Rugby World Cup 2025 after finishing in the top four of RWC 2021, with the remaining positions to be filled via World Rugby’s new women’s international 15s tournament, WXV, and regional competitions in 2024.
Raising the bar, inspiring more people to play and support the game
Rugby World Cup 2021 smashed records across the board with more than 150,000 fans attending across the tournament, 1.8 million viewers on average in England and New Zealand tuned into the final with more than 156 million video views on social media. Powerful personalities were born, and a new generation of accessible and relatable role models championed change.
RWC 2025 aims to continue to raise the bar for women in rugby, inspiring the next generation of young players and supercharging the growth of women’s sport in England and across the globe. The Rugby World Cup Impact Programme, delivered by the RFU in partnership with the UK Government and Sport England, will also create more opportunities for females than ever before across all levels of the game through its volunteer, coaching and internship programmes.
The tournament is the most accessible women’s Rugby World Cup ever and will expand the reach of the game across the five-week period by bringing the world’s best players to cities right around England. Four of the venues are already home to English domestic rugby teams including Bristol Bears at Ashton Gate, Northampton Saints and Loughborough Lightning at Franklin’s Gardens, both Exeter Chiefs’ men’s and women’s teams at Sandy Park, and Sale Sharks at Salford Community Stadium. Twickenham Stadium, the historic home of England Rugby, will also play host during the tournament and has this year achieved the world record-breaking crowd of 58,498 at the TikTok Women’s Six Nations title decider between England and France in April.
The competition heads to three stadiums that regularly host football with the Premier League’s Brighton and Hove Stadium welcoming teams to the southeast, having recently hosted the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 and the shock 34-32 Japan victory over South Africa during the men’s Rugby World Cup 2015, with Sunderland’s Stadium of Light and York’s Community Stadium also confirmed.
World Rugby Chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said: “Following the record-breaking success of Rugby World Cup 2021 in New Zealand, women’s rugby has built an incredibly strong foundation and as one of the fastest growing sports in the world, RWC 2025 is set to take the game to the next level as the biggest celebration of women’s rugby with fans and players very much at its heart.
“We look forward to continuing to collaborate with all our partners as we strive to deliver a world-class and historic event that will leave a lasting legacy, both in England and around the world as we aim to inspire millions of new players and fans and continue to grow the game we love.”
Sue Day, RFU Chief Operating Officer and Chief Finance Officer and former Red Rose, added: “Through our continued investment in the women's game, the Red Roses have already inspired a new generation of girls and boys to play rugby. Our home World Cup will further accelerate this growth and our continued partnership with World Rugby and the UK Government will support our aim to make that happen.
“In taking Rugby World Cup 2025 to venues the length and breadth of England, we want to give fans who may not have watched rugby before, the chance to be inspired by world class sporting action. It’s access to tournaments like these that can light a spark in people, and we hope it will encourage a new generation of people to give rugby a try for themselves.”
UK Sports Minster, Stuart Andrew added: "Congratulations to all the selected host cities and venues.
"Staging events like the Women's Rugby World Cup will further cement the UK’s position as a global home of major sporting events. We support the RFU's and World Rugby's ambitious plans to host matches right across England and make the tournament the most well-attended in the history of the sport - setting a benchmark for future World Cups.
"It promises to be a memorable occasion as we showcase the best of women's rugby union to a worldwide audience, and continue to break barriers for women's sport."
Independent Chair of the Rugby World Cup 2025 Board of Directors, Gill Whitehead, said: “Rugby World Cup 2025 represents the beginning of an exciting new future for Rugby World Cups as the first event to be held under a new delivery model with World Rugby and the RFU in partnership, working alongside the UK Government and we look forward to working together closely over the next two years.
“The host cities and venues have been selected with accessibility in mind. No matter where you live in England, you should be within reach of a match. All the cities selected have demonstrated they share the same passion for the tournament and are committed in joining us on our mission to deliver the biggest and best women’s Rugby World Cup yet.”
The women’s Rugby World Cup 2025 is supported by its official partners Mastercard, Capgemini and Gallagher.
RWC 2025 will be the first Rugby World Cup hosted under the new joint-venture model (Local Operating Committee) between World Rugby and the RFU, with funding from the UK Government and support from our host city partners which will aim to optimise efficiency and impact across the tournament.
Following the two years to go milestone, all eyes will turn to England later this year at the conclusion of the men’s Rugby World Cup 2023 as the road to England 2025 is launched alongside our partner venues and cities ahead of what promises to be a record-breaking event for women’s rugby in 2025.
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