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St Helen's set for blue plaque recognition

IT'S a ground where world champion Wallabies have been toppled and cricket history has been forged.

St Helen's rugby and cricket ground

Now Swansea's St Helen's is to get a blue plaque to forever mark its huge contribution to sport since the late 19th Century.

Swansea Council is behind the blue plaque scheme. After Cwmdonkin Park, St Helen's will become the second place to be awarded blue plaque status in recent years. People to have been celebrated by the status include poet and Bletchley Park codebreaker Vernon Watkins, singer Pete Ham and Gothic novelist Ann of Swansea.

Some of Swansea sport's most historic moments in St Helen's have included legendary West Indies cricketer Sir Garfield Sobers hitting six sixes in 1968 and Swansea RFC beating the world champion Wallabies in 1992.

The blue plaque will be sited close to the clubhouse steps leading to the main pavilion.

Cllr Robert Francis-Davies, Swansea Council's Cabinet Member for Enterprise, Development and Regeneration, said: "It's not just Swansea's most accomplished sons and daughters who have put our city on the map over the years - it's places, too, which is why they're also being recognised by our blue plaque scheme. 

"St Helen's is hugely deserving of celebration. It's been at the heart of sporting life in Swansea since being opened in 1873, playing host to so many world class matches and athletes ever since.

"Our growing collection of blue plaques across Swansea shows the impact our city's people and places have had on the wider world throughout history. They add to Swansea's growing reputation for heritage-based tourism."

The St Helen's blue plaque will be unveiled by the start of October this year.

St Helen's was the venue for Wales' first home rugby international in 1882 against England. It also played host to Swansea RFC's famous 11-3 win over the All Blacks in 1935.

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