Induction into the Hall of Fame, which is decided by members of the RPA Management Board, is usually reserved for former players, retired from international rugby for three years, who have made an outstanding contribution to the game.
Last year's choices were Fran Cotton and Jeremy Guscott and previous inductees include the lieks of Richard Hill, Martin Johnson, Jason Leonard and Sir Ian McGeechan.
This year marks the first occasion that the award has gone to someone who wasn't an international player.
|Ian Robertson, Linda Lawson, Jim Thompson, Rory Lawson|
|(c) Getty Images|
Other awards on the night were as follows:
Computacenter Players' Player of the Year
1. Schalk Brits, Saracens
2. Soane Tonga'Uiha, Northampton Saints
3. Ben Foden, Northampton Saints
Norman Broadbent Young Player of the Year - The Nick Duncombe Memorial Award
1. Ben Youngs, Leicester Tigers
2. Chris Ashton, Northampton Saints
3. Courtney Lawes, Northampton Saints
Special Merit Award, sponsored by LV= Asset Management
Simon Shaw MBE
HSBC Hall of Fame Induction
Bill McLaren CBE
The Blyth Spirit Award sponsored by Towergate tlc
Andy Ripley OBE
Sunday Times Try of the Year
1. Chris Ashton: Leicester v Northampton Saints: 31st October 2009
2. Andy Saull: Saracens v Harlequins: 17th April 2010
3. Joe Maddock: London Wasps v Bath Rugby: 24th April 2010