The Club has lost one of its greatest players.
Gareth Howls has left us after a long illness but he will be remembered with admiration, affection by those who played with him and generations of Ebbw Valians who were privileged to watch him. He played as prop or lock for Ebbw Vale, the Barbarians, the Gwent and British Police, Crawshay’s Welsh and the County teams against the All-Blacks and Springboks.
He was Ebbw Vale Player of the Year in 1975, captain of the club four seasons in the Seventies, played four times for Wales A, was a Wales Reserve and worthy of a full cap. He made his debut for his one and only club in September 1965 and retired in 1981 after 608 appearances, a club record.
A Detective Sergeant, Gareth was an outstanding forward and a rugby character and a great tourist whether in Cornwall on the annual end of season tour, in Italy playing as a guest for Zebre or California. His memory will never be dimmed, he really was and remains, one of our greatest. His years of dedicated service to Ebbw Vale was an example to those who follow him in the team today.
Message from Chairman Jon Jones,
Ebbw Vale has lost one of its most iconic players and one of my childhood heroes. Since becoming Chair of the club, I was fortunate enough to spend time with Gareth at a few home games, all he wanted was to see the club doing well and playing quality rugby offering administrators, coaches and players encouragement, whilst at the same time ensuring that we all understood what the Ebbw Vale badge stood for.
The Annual award for Club Captain was changed to the Gareth Howls Captains Award, a tribute to his great presence as a Captain, Leader, and Player and his 608 games for the club will remain for eternity marking his enormous contribution to Ebbw Vale RFC.
All at the club are thinking of Gareth’s wife, Stella and family at this sad time.