Refereeing in Cambridge
Cambridge has often been described as the ‘true home of football’, as the Laws of the Game were first used on Parker’s Piece 150 years ago. Whilst we have come a long way since then, there inevitably still need to be officials to enforce these Laws, and we are proud to have a number of referees within the University who officiate within our leagues, and officiate within both the County and BUCS league structures too.
The University of Cambridge is now recognised as one of the first national Referee Hubs, as developed by BUCS in partnership with the Referee Association Football Association (RAFA) Youth Council. These Hubs support the development of qualified officials, whilst bringing in new ones, so that they can continue refereeing throughout their university life and maximise their involvement in the game, both within the university structure and the community at large. The Cambridge University Referees’ Academy is managed by Chris Hussey, in conjunction with Colin Hills, Cambridgeshire Football Association’s Referees’ Officer.
We offer regular CPD and training opportunities, with regular social events so that our officials can continue to improve and work with fellow referees in a nurturing environment to support their practice. There has never been a better time to become a referee.
How to book a referee
In order to book a referee for a fixture for a weekend fixture, the University Referee Coordinator must be contacted by the preceding Wednesday, before 7pm, so that appointments for the referees can be sent out later that evening. Appointments operate on a priority basis, with Cup fixtures and top division games being covered first, and officials assigned around their availability. All of this is done centrally through the Coordinator, to ensure maximum coverage of fixtures and to ensure that all officials are appointed impartially, and to fixtures that are suitable for their development.
Please include the fixture details when making a booking, such as the teams involved, the venue, time, day and anything else that may be pertinent. The details of your referee appointment will normally be sent on a Wednesday evening – giving both club and officials time to prepare for their fixture, and exchange any details in case of cancellation.
The University Referee Coordinator’s Details are on the Committee Page for the CUAFL.
How to become a referee
We offer courses throughout the year for those keen to get involved within refereeing, in conjunction with Cambridgeshire FA. The Basic Referee Training Course provides the introduction to officiating in football. The course will introduce the learner to The Laws of Association Football and their application delivered through theory and practical elements, outlining the skills required to operate as a match official in grassroots football. If you are interested in becoming a Referee or would like to broaden your knowledge to increase your enjoyment of the game, please get in touch with the University Referee Coordinator.