James Robson Receives Top Accolade

Scotland’s long-serving rugby team doctor James Robson has received the “ultimate recognition” from a world-leading body that represents medical professionals.

At a ceremony in Edinburgh yesterday (Friday 19 November), Robson, 52, was awarded a Fellowship ad hominem from The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.


It is extremely rare for such an accolade to be presented to a non-surgeon.  The honour is given to those who are deemed by the College to have achieved distinction in their professional field and rendered special service to the “art and science of surgery.”

Dr Robson – who is also Scottish Rugby’s Head of Medical Services, stays in Dundee, where he was a GP for many years, but hails originally from Whitehaven in Cumbria – said he was “flabbergasted” to be awarded such an honour.

“It’s incredible.  I’m not a surgeon and to be recognised by a College like this is just fantastic.  In many ways it’s the ultimate recognition but I believe it’s a reflection on how seriously we treat player welfare and safety in Scottish and indeed British rugby,” he said.

James Robson: honoured by the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh 

Dr Robson’s involvement with Scottish rugby spans more than 20 years.  He has served as Scotland team doctor in over 100 matches and as doctor for the British and Irish Lions on their past five tours taking in all three of the southern hemisphere’s big guns, New Zealand, South Africa and Australia.

David Tolley, President of the College, said: “The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh is delighted to be awarding Dr Robson this Fellowship.

“His dedication to the enhancement of medical care for rugby players at all levels of the game, and his tireless efforts in advancing the reputation and status of sports medicine have earned him the respect of all of our surgical Fellows and Members.  The award of the Fellowship of the College is a fitting recognition of his services.”

Scottish Rugby’s Chairman, Allan Munro, said: “James has been an unassuming yet pivotal member of many rugby teams whether at club level in Dundee to the very apex of the game with the British and Irish Lions.

“He has ensured players at all levels of the game have benefited from world-class health care, all dispensed with calm assurance and good humour.

“Scottish Rugby is fortunate to count James among our staff and congratulates him on this richly deserved recognition.”

Dr Robson added: “No one can work in the field of sports medicine and team sport in general without the support of their loved ones, so my wife, Christine and my girls, Eleanor and Emma, are the real heroes here.”