Lancaster vs York. It's a rivalry that goes back hundreds of years. This struggle between red and white has become the basis for the largest Varsity Tournament in Europe.
The origins of Roses date back to almost 50 years ago, on 15 May 1965, when the then Vice-Chancellor of York, Lord James of Rusholme, suggested a boat race between Lancaster University and York University. The students at both universities expanded on the proposed race. They held a 3-day Olympic-style tournament with various sports: rowing, table tennis, relay race, mixed field hockey, and tug of war. The winner of each competition received two points, and the losing vice-chancellor presented a trophy to the winning university.
The events popularity has snowballed over the years, exponentially increasing in size since its founding. Now Roses features over 130 fixtures across the weekend with events ranging from eSports to Ultimate Frisbee. Live coverage of the event is broadcast every year by a collaboration between the two university's student television stations YSTV and LA1TV, its two student radio stations, Bailrigg FM and University Radio York, and campus newspapers SCAN and York Vision.
Roses is truly an event to behold, and after two years out, this year looks to be the biggest and best Roses yet. Whether you are Lancastrian or Yorkshire, wear your colours, support your teams, and get ready for the ultimate tournament to decide whether Roses are Red or White.
(Just in case you were wondering, ROSES ARE RED!)