Former Pertemps Bees captain Ed Orgee is leaving Sharmans Cross Road for a full-time contract with French club La Rochelle.
The 30-year-old lock had been offered a part-time contract with the Bees but has opted to return to full-time rugby, five years after he left Worcester.
The former Bristol University and Moseley player, who has also captained the Barbarians, is due in La Rochelle a week on Sunday for a pre-training camp ahead of their season in the French equivalent of National One.
"I've signed a one-year contract with the option of a further year," Orgee said. "I was offered a new contract by the Bees and I was tempted to stay but I have always wanted to play abroad and this was too good an opportunity to miss.
"It was on the cards a couple of months from the end of last season. La Rochelle were interested but I couldn't commit myself because I was having problems with my knee and I wasn't sure how it would stand up to full-time rugby but I've had a couple of injections which have settled the knee down and I've done a lot of rehab work and it's fine now.
"I went over there a couple of weeks ago for a fitness test and I've got to go back for July 16 for a training camp.
"From what I can gather, most of the squad are French which will be a test of my language skills. I speak enough French to get by, but another of the reasons for going out there is to try to become a fluent speaker."
Orgee arrived at Sharmans Cross Road in 2001 after a brief spell with Moseley and proved the most successful captain in the Bees' history, leading them to the semi-finals of the Powergen Cup two years ago, defeating Wasps in the quarter-finals and securing fourth place in National One, their highest-ever league finish.
He lost the captaincy to Jim Jenner midway through last season when fitness concerns led to him losing his place for a time after Christmas, though he finished the season strongly.
Orgee's departure comes just a week after veteran winger Nick Baxter, who followed him from Worcester, announced he was joining National Two club Stourbridge.