The Roses varsity is an annual sports tournament contested between Lancaster University and the University of York. The Varsity is named after the 15th Century civil war, the Wars of the Roses, between the red roses of the House of Lancaster and the white roses of the House of York. The competition is held in the opening weeks of the Summer Term with each university hosting the event on alternate years.
Roses is the largest inter-university sports varsity in Europe and a major fixture date on any Lancaster club's calendar. LUSWP are no different and every year we go head-to-head with our York counterparts, UYSWC, in the pool at Lancaster University Sports Centre or the York Sports Village.
The swimming and water polo contest is worth 16 points towards the overall Roses tournament score to determine the winner of the Carter James Trophy, with 4 points on offer to the victorious team in the Men's and Women's Swimming Galas and the Men's and Women's Water Polo fixtures. In recent years we have achieved amazing results, consistently beating York and achieving multiple iterations of a "Red Wash", which involves us winning every single fixture.
Roses is one of the highlights of the LUSWP year, with both swimming and water polo receiving live coverage on student TV and Radio services and attracting huge spectator crowds. The electric atmosphere at the pool is incredible to experience and pushes competitors to major Personal Best times and match winning performances. We hope to see you poolside wearing the Lancaster red at a Roses varsity in the future!
RECENT ROSES SCORES 2016: Lancaster 12 - York 4 2017: Lancaster 16 - York 0 2018: Lancaster 12 - York 4 2019: Lancaster 12 - York 4 2020/21: Traditional Roses format cancelled due to COVID-19 2022: Lancaster 16 - York 0 2023: Lancaster 12 - York 1