Huddersfield Giants R. L. F. C. are an English professional rugby league club from Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, the birthplace of rugby league, who play in the Super League competition. They have won 7 Championships and 6 Challenge Cups, but have not won a trophy since 1962. The club was known as Huddersfield Barracudas from 1984–88 and Huddersfield-Sheffield Giants for the 2000 season and they play in a distinctive strip of a claret shirt with thin gold hoops, claret shorts and claret and gold hooped socks. They have rivalries with Warrington Wolves, Leeds Rhinos, Bradford Bulls, Halifax and Wakefield Trinity Wildcats. The earliest record of a match being played in the Huddersfield area is in 1848. Hepworth won a close game which exhibited the usual amount of confusions, bloody noses, etc. There appears to have no formal structure to sport in the Huddersfield area until the opening of the Apollo Gymnasium on 3 August 1850. In 1864 the Apollo Gymnasium was turned into the Gymnasium Theatre, the athletes of the gymnasium responded by forming a more organised athletics association. In an advertisement headed Huddersfield Athletic Club they invited gentlemen desirous of becoming members to a meeting at 8 oclock on the evening of 16 November 1864 at the Queen Hotel. The meeting went ahead, a hundred names were registered and a committee was formed, within a month a new gymnasium was in service in a basement on Back John William Street. On 27 January 1866 twenty members of the Huddersfield Athletic Club agreed to play a match against twenty of the Huddersfield Rifle Corps at Rifle Field in Trinity Street. Although the result was a draw, a large crowd was attracted. In light of this, the Huddersfield Athletic Club agreed to start a football section which was to start at the beginning of December 1866. Initially the Huddersfield Athletic Club made no contribution to the support of the football club, as the football club grew, it became a useful recruiting tool for the Huddersfield Athletic Club. In 1869 six matches were played and by 1870 three of the players had been selected to represent Yorkshire. By 1872 there were so many players that a team was formed. The growth in popularity of the club and the need for better facilities led to the Huddersfield Athletic Club approaching St Johns Cricket Club with a proposal to merge the two clubs, St Johns Cricket Club had been formed in 1866 at Hillhouse and had moved to Fartown ground. By 1875, when talks began, over £800 had been spent on developing the new ground
Founded in 1973 as New Hunslet, a replacement for the original Hunslet F. C. they became Hunslet in 1979 and played as Hunslet Hawks between 1995 and 2016. In July 1973, the original Hunslet club was wound up because no new location could be found that was financially viable. The £300,000 proceeds of the sale of Parkside were distributed to shareholders, the resurrected club had a new badge depicting a rising phoenix to symbolise their rebirth. The stay at the stadium was cut short when the owners closed the ground. In 1978, coach Bill Ramsey put a lot of pressure on the RFL, the club reverted to Hunslet for the 1979–80 season. After leaving Elland Road, Hunslet had a spell at Bramley. On 19 November 1995, the club, now known as Hunslet Hawks, moved to the South Leeds Stadium, on that day, Leigh were the guests at Hunslets first home game for twenty-two years. They then narrowly missed out on promotion from Division Two in 1996, coach Steve Ferres left to join Huddersfield and David Plange took over as player-coach. In 1997 the Hawks played in the first Challenge Cup Plate Final losing 60-14 to Hull Kingston Rovers and it was the Hawks first appearance at Wembley Stadium since 1965. Also in 1997, the Hawks were promoted to the First Division as champions, in 1999 as a possible merger between Hunslet and Bramley was debated. In 1999 Hunslet won the Northern Ford Premiership Grand Final against Dewsbury, 12–11, after that game the Hawks were denied entry to Super League by the Rugby Football League who cited a document called Framing the Future as justification. This caused a number of players to leave the club and for the attendance to fall by more than 1,200 to 800. A link-up with Leeds Rhinos saw Plange go to Headingley as Academy coach, Paul March was the player/coach at Hunslet, joining midway through the 2009 season following the resignation of Graeme Hallas. March guided Hunslet to a 6th-place finish and a spot in Championship 1. Hunslet travelled to Blackpool in the first week of the winning, 18–21, to set up an elimination semi-final against Oldham in which Hunslet were comfortably beaten. In 2010 Paul March led Hunslet to their first silverware for over 11 years by securing the Co-operative Championship 1 title, in 2012, Barry Eaton took over as coach. In 2014 Hunslet won the Grand Final after extra time against Oldham, Barry Eaton left in late January 2016 to join Leeds Rhinos and was replaced by his assistant coach and former Hunslet Hawks player Matt Bramald. Bramald left the club at the end of the 2016 season having completed his contract and he was replaced by former Hunslet player James Coyle
Rugby Football League
The Rugby Football League is the governing body for professional rugby league in England. The name Rugby Football League previously also referred to the league competition run by the organisation. This has since been supplanted by Super League, the Championship, based at Red Hall in Leeds, it administers the England national rugby league team, the Challenge Cup, Super League and the Rugby League Championships. The social and junior game is administered in association with the British Amateur Rugby League Association, the Rugby Football League is a member of the Rugby League European Federation and as a senior Full Member has a combined veto power over the Council with France. The RFL is part of the Community Board, which also has representatives from BARLA, Combined Services, English Schools Rugby League, eventually the Northern was dropped from its name at the beginning of the 1980s. The turnover of the RFL was reported as £27m in 2011, two days later, on Thursday 29 August 1895, representatives of 21 clubs met in the George Hotel, Huddersfield to form the Northern Rugby Football Union. Twenty clubs agreed to resign from the Rugby Football Union, the Cheshire club, Stockport, had telegraphed the meeting requesting admission to the new organisation and was duly accepted with a second Cheshire club, Runcorn, admitted at the next meeting. The 22 clubs and their years of foundation were, In 1908 the Northern Unions brand of rugby was taken up in Australia, the Union hosted touring sides from both countries before assembling a Great Britain representative team for a 1910 tour of Australia and New Zealand. These nations, particularly Australia, would go on to excel in the sport, the British Amateur Rugby League Association was created in 1973 in Huddersfield by a group of enthusiasts concerned about the dramatic disappearance of many amateur leagues and clubs. Fewer than 150 amateur teams remained with a mere 30 youth rugby league teams, the breakaway from the RFL was acrimonious and was strongly contested, with a vote 29-1 against recognising BARLA. Thanks to Tom Mitchell, this changed to a vote of approval for BARLA within 12 months. Maurice Lindsay became the Chief Executive of the RFL in 1992, proposing the Super League, Lindsay returned to Wigan in 1999 for his second stint at the club after Sir Rodney Walker, then chairman of the RFL, sacked him after a campaign to unseat him failed. The RFL accumulated losses of £1.9 million at the end of 2001, shortly before a restructuring of the governing body. Within a year of joining the RFL, he oversaw reunification with BARLA after nearly 30 years of division, Lewis left in 2012 to become Chief Executive of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club. The RFL net value has been every year since 2004. The regional leagues may include winter competitions in addition, in 2012, the Rugby Football League were awarded the Stonewall Sport Award in recognition of their work in embracing inclusivity and tackling homophobia. They also became the first UK sporting organisation to make the top 100 employers in the Stonewall Index that measures attitudes towards lesbian, gay and bisexual staff. The RFL operates a system and is responsible for running the top three professional divisions as well as the National Conference League and various regional leagues below that
Yorkshire, formally known as the County of York, is a historic county of Northern England and the largest in the United Kingdom. Due to its size in comparison to other English counties, functions have been undertaken over time by its subdivisions. Throughout these changes, Yorkshire has continued to be recognised as a geographical territory, Yorkshire has sometimes been nicknamed Gods Own County or Gods Own Country. Yorkshire Day, held on 1 August, is a celebration of the culture of Yorkshire. Yorkshire is now divided between different official regions, most of the county falls within Yorkshire and the Humber. The extreme northern part of the county falls within North East England, Small areas in the west of the historic county now form part of North West England, following boundary changes in 1974. Yorkshire or the County of York was so named as it is the shire of the city of York local /ˈjɔːk/ or Yorks Shire, York comes from the Viking name for the city, Jórvík. Shire is from Old English, scir meaning care or official charge, the shire suffix is locally pronounced /-ʃə/ shuh, or occasionally /-ʃiə/, a homophone of sheer. Early inhabitants of Yorkshire were Celts, who formed two tribes, the Brigantes and the Parisi. The Brigantes controlled territory which later became all of the North Riding of Yorkshire, the tribe controlled most of Northern England and more territory than any other Celtic tribe in England. That they had the Yorkshire area as their heartland is evident in that Isurium Brigantum was the town of their civitas under Roman rule. Six of the nine Brigantian poleis described by Claudius Ptolemaeus in the Geographia fall within the historic county, the Parisi, who controlled the area that would become the East Riding of Yorkshire, might have been related to the Parisii of Lutetia Parisiorum, Gaul. Their capital was at Petuaria, close to the Humber estuary, initially, this situation suited both the Romans and the Brigantes, who were known as the most militant tribe in Britain. Queen Cartimandua left her husband Venutius for his bearer, Vellocatus. Cartimandua, due to her relationship with the Romans, was able to keep control of the kingdom. At the second attempt, Venutius seized the kingdom, but the Romans, under general Petillius Cerialis, the fortified city of Eboracum was named as capital of Britannia Inferior and joint-capital of all Roman Britain. During the two years before the death of Emperor Septimius Severus, the Roman Empire was run from Eboracum by him, another emperor, Constantius Chlorus, died in Yorkshire during a visit in 306 AD. This saw his son Constantine the Great proclaimed emperor in the city, in the early 5th century, the Roman rule ceased with the withdrawal of the last active Roman troops
Acton and Willesden R.L.F.C.
Acton and Willesden RLFC was a professional rugby league team based at Acton Park Royal in London. Along with Streatham and Mitcham R. L. F. C, the club was an early attempt to establish rugby league in London during the 1930s. Although the club drew good crowds the operating costs proved too much of a burden so the moved to Liverpool. Both Acton and Willesden RLFC and Streatham and Mitcham RLFC were started by local businessman Sydney Parkes, the idea of two teams was to generate plenty of interest in the game, and also to attempt to establish greyhound racing at both clubs newly built grounds. Both teams were accepted into the Rugby Football League in March 1935, a number of supporters and rejected trialists formed a number of amateur teams in London. There was no competition in London at that time but leading teams were Acton Hornets, Park Royal Rangers, Hendon, Dagenham. Unfortunately for Acton and Willesden, high player payments proved to be their downfall, although they drew good crowds and were reasonably successful, the income was not sufficient to sustain the salaries for the reserve standard players they had recruited. Acton and Willesden struggled on but the club folded at the conclusion of the 1935-36 season. Streatham and Mitcham survived a season longer, however, as they were operated the same as Acton and Willesden, insufficient income became a crux, none of the amateur clubs survived the failure of the two professional clubs. Rugby league would eventually be played again in London, although the establishment of professional club was not until 1980 in the form of Fulham RLFC at Craven Cottage. Dennis Madden Cornelius Con Dennis Murphy Rugby Mudlarks, Photo of Leeds playing against Acton & Willesden at Park Royal in London 1936