Leigh, Greater Manchester
Leigh is a town in the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan, Greater Manchester, England, 7.7 miles southeast of Wigan and 9.5 miles west of Manchester, on low-lying land northwest of Chat Moss. Part of Lancashire, Leigh was the centre of a large ecclesiastical parish covering six vills or townships; when the three townships of Pennington and Bedford merged in 1875 forming the Leigh Local Board District, Leigh became the official name for the town although it had been applied to the area of Pennington and Westleigh around the parish church for many centuries. The town became an urban district in 1894. In 1899 Leigh became a municipal borough; the first town hall was built in King Street and replaced by the present building in 1907. An agricultural area noted for dairy farming, domestic spinning and weaving led to a considerable silk and, in the 20th century, cotton industry. Leigh exploited the underlying coal measures after the town was connected to the canals and railways. Leigh had an important engineering base.
The legacy of Leigh's industrial past can be seen in the remaining red brick mills – some of which are listed buildings – although it is now a residential town, with Edwardian and Victorian terraced housing packed around the town centre. Leigh's present-day economy is based on the retail sector. Leigh is derived from the Old English leah which meant a place at the wood or woodland clearing, a glade and subsequently a pasture or meadow, it was spelt Legh in 1276. Other recorded spellings include Leech, 1264; as its name denotes it was a district rich in meadow and pasture land, the produce of its dairies, the Leigh cheese, was noted for its excellence. Westleigh, the west clearing, was Westeley in 1237, Westlegh in 1238 and Westlay in Legh in 1292. Pennington was recorded as Pininton and Pynynton in 1246 and 1360, Penynton in 1305, Pynyngton in 1351 and 1442 and Penyngton in 1443, the ending tun denotes an enclosure, farmstead or manor in Old English; the ford of Beda through the Pennington Brook gave its name to Bedford, recorded as Beneford from 1200–21 and Bedeford in 1200 and 1296.
The earliest signs of human activity in Leigh are evidenced by a Neolithic stone axe found in Pennington and a bronze spearhead from south of Gas Street. A single Roman coin was found at Butts in Bedford. After the Roman departure from Britain, into the history of Anglo-Saxon England, nothing was written about Leigh; however evidence for the presence of Saxons in what was a sparsely populated and isolated part of the country is provided by local township place names that incorporate the Old English suffix leah, such as Leigh, Tyldesley and Astley. In the 12th century the ancient parish of Leigh was made up of six townships, including Pennington, Westleigh, Atherton and Tyldesley cum Shakerley. Weekly markets were held by a cattle fair held twice-yearly. Bedford manor was mentioned in documents in 1202 when it was held by Sir Henry de Kighley whose family held it until the 16th century, but never lived there; the Shuttleworths, landowners from the 14th century, were another prominent Bedford family.
Richard Shuttleworth married a daughter of the Urmstons from Westleigh and brought part of the Westleigh inheritance to Bedford. This family lived at Shuttleworth House, or Sandypool Farm as it is known, south of the Bridgewater Canal near to the old manor house, Bedford Hall, which survives today as a Grade II listed building. Another prominent Bedford family, the Sales of Hope Carr Hall, had a great deal of influence in Bedford for over 400 years, owned more land than the Shuttleworths; the family were recusants and secretly kept the "old faith" when Roman Catholicism was subject to civil or criminal penalties. Hope Carr Hall was moated; the manor house of Westleigh existed in Richard I's time. In 1292 Sigreda, the heiress of the manor, married Richard de Urmston, the manor passed to the Urmston family and remained there until the last of the male Urmstons died in 1659, it was abandoned because of mining subsidence and Westleigh Old Hall became the manor by repute. The Ranicars and the Marsh families lived here.
Westleigh Old Hall was another Leigh hall. The Pennington family owned Pennington Hall from about 1200 until they were replaced by the Bradshaw or Bradshaighs in 1312; the Bradshaws held the manor until 1703 when the last of the male line died. Pennington Hall was rebuilt in 1748 by the owner Samuel Hilton and in 1807 sold to the Gaskell family of Thornes, who let it to a succession of tenants. Around 1840 James Pownall, a founder member of the silk manufacturing firm and Pownall, was tenant. Occupants were Charles Jackson, cotton manufacturer, Jabez Johnson, F. W. Bouth founder of Bouth's Mill in 1862, The last resident was George Shaw. On 3 December 1919 George Shaw & Co Ltd offered the hall and grounds to the people of Leigh; the gift was accepted and opened to the public on 25 August 1920. The hall was converted to a museum and art gallery in 1928 but was demolished in 1963; the grounds are now Pennington Park. Leigh was divided in its allegiance during the English Civil War, some of the population supporting the Royalists' cause while others supported the Parliamentarians.
A battle was fought in the town on 2 December 1642, when a group of Chowbenters, men from neighbouring Atherton, beat back and routed Cavalier troops under the command of James Stanley, the 7th Earl of Derby. Sir Thomas Tyldesley of Myerscough and Morleys Hall, was ki
Wales national rugby league team
The Wales national rugby league team represents Wales in international rugby league football matches. The team is ranked ninth in the RLIF World Rankings; the team was run under the auspices of the Rugby Football League, but an independent body, Wales Rugby League, now runs the team from Cardiff. Three Welsh players have been entered into the Rugby League Hall Of Fame; as with other Welsh national sporting teams, Wales strip has been red. However, in the World Cup campaign in 2000 they wore a shirt featuring the Welsh flag, adding a touch of green and white; the team is known as "The Dragons" and so the teams logo on the shirt is a red dragon. The team date back to 1907, making them the third oldest national side after England and New Zealand, it was a touring New Zealand side that Wales first played against in 1908, winning 9–8 at Aberdare. Since Wales have played England, since 1935 France, as well as welcomed the touring Australia and New Zealand teams, although they toured themselves, not playing a match in the Southern Hemisphere until 1975.
For 26 years Wales competed against their two biggest rivals and France, in the European Nations Cup, winning the trophy four times. Wales has competed in the World Cup on five occasions, the first time being in 1975. In 1995 and 2000 they had their most successful tournaments to date, making the Semi-Finals on both occasions before being beaten by England and Australia respectively. Wales failed to qualify for the 2008 World Cup, being the second highest ranked side not to do so, having lost to Scotland on points difference over two matches, they qualified for the 2013 World Cup but failed to win a game, including losing 32–16 to low ranked Italy in their opening game at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. In recent seasons, Wales has taken massive strides under former player Iestyn Harris who had coached Wales to back to back European Cup successes, which culminated in a Four Nations appearance in 2011. In 2014 former England and France coach John Kear became the new head coach after Iestyn Harris left the post to concentrate on his new job as head coach at Salford Red Devils.
On 5 April 1904, England played an international match against the "Other Nationalities", a team of Welshmen and Scotsmen, in Wigan. Of the twelve players who played for the Other Nationalities team, as it was a 12-a-side game, ten of them were Welshmen coming from Northern English clubs. At the turn of the century many Welshmen made the switch from rugby union, wanting to be paid for playing, although the numbers switching were increasing, the Northern Union did not think that a Welsh side would be strong enough for England. After 80 minutes however, the Other Nationalities had beaten England 9–3; this team carried on for another two years, playing England annually in 1905 and 1906, losing 26–11 and drawing 3–3 respectively. From 1905 to 1910 Rugby League as a sport enjoyed growth, not just in Wales and England, but on the east coast of Australia and in northern New Zealand; when Albert Henry Baskerville's NZ All Golds with their guest Australian star Dally Messenger arrived in Britain for the inaugural tour by a southern hemisphere side, the first full international was against Wales on New Year's Day 1908.
The Welsh rugby league team were contesting their first national fixture, managed to beat the touring Kiwis 9–8 in Aberdare in front of 20,000 spectators. This was the first international match played under new "Northern Union" rules, which would be changed again, but these rules were a small departure from traditional rugby union rules, used in previous international matches; the New Zealand team, or the "All Golds" as they were being called by the New Zealand newspapers, had never played rugby by these rules before but did have a week of preparation and training sessions leading up to the match. With this Welsh victory and large crowd, Wales played their second fixture in Tonypandy, managed to win that match too recording a 35–18 win against what would soon become their main rival, the England Lions. At the end of 1908 Wales played their third and final fixture of the decade, playing England again, but this time in Broughton, Lancashire; this time they lost 31–7. However, in 1909 another victory was to occur for Welsh Rugby League, with a Welsh League XIII made up of players still playing in Wales beating a touring Australian side 14–13 in Merthyr.
In the years before the outbreak of the war, Wales played England. The two national teams played each other every year, including 1914. Due to Rugby League only extensively being played in the two countries in the whole of the Northern Hemisphere, touring Australia and New Zealand teams were the only chances to play someone different. Although the two matches against the English played in Wales were played in Ebbw Vale in Monmouthshire, the Welsh travelled around England for away matches, playing in Coventry, Plymouth and St. Helens. Collectively those seven matches in Wales and England produced six defeats for the Welsh team, although there were signs of improvement, in the last match in St Helens the Dragons narrowly lost by just four points, the match ending 16–12. On the 7 October 1911 Wales played Australia for the first time; the match, held at Ebbw Vale again, drew 7,000 people to watch Wales go down 20–28. The match was significant though because throughout the next few decades Australia would play the Dragons in Wales whenever they toured Great Britain.
During and after the First World War many sports suffered, rugby league in Wales was no exception, the team didn't play a match again until 1921. After a seven-year hiatus Wales once again played England and continued to
Scotland national rugby league team
The Scotland national rugby league team represent Scotland in international rugby league football tournaments. Following the break-up of the Great Britain team in 2008, Scottish players play for Scotland, apart from occasional Southern Hemisphere tours, for which the Great Britain team is expected to be revived; the team is nicknamed the Bravehearts. Though its foundations may date back to as early as 1904, the team formally began in 1995, making them the newest international rugby league team in Great Britain. In their first match they played Ireland. Since Ireland has become the team's main rival, the two teams having played each other many times in their short histories. In 2000 they qualified for their first World Cup, but failed to make an impact, losing all three of their group matches. In 2008 they beat. Scotland play in a dark blue strip, similar to the nation's football and rugby union teams, with blue shirt and socks. A blue and white shield with a thistle, the Scottish emblem, is the team's badge.
The shirt has been changed, although in the early days of the team, white was used on the shirts. The team is ranked seventh in the RLIF World Rankings, having jumped from fourth after going winless in the 2017 World Cup. Englishman Steve McCormack is the team's coach, having coached since 2004, with Danny Brough captaining the side, it could be argued that the foundations for the Scottish team began in 1904. On 5 April 1904 England played an international match against the "Other Nationalities", a team of Welshmen and Scotsmen, in Wigan, it was a 12-a-side game. Of the twelve players who played for the Other Nationalities team two of them were Scotsmen coming from Northern Union clubs, including captain George Frater. After 80 minutes the Other Nationalities had beaten England 9–3; the team carried on for another two years, playing England in 1905, losing 26–11, in 1906, drawing 3–3. The team was revived, most notably in the early 1930s, in 1949. Both Scotland and Ireland had been developing rugby league in their respective nations for several years.
This was true at student level, with a Scotland student team having played since 1987 and having competed in the 1992 Students World Cup. But it was decided that the time was right for an open-age national team to attempt to be entered into an Emerging Nations Tournament that would coincide with the 1995 World Cup, that the Rugby League International Federation had announced. Both Scotland Rugby League and Rugby League Ireland arranged a match on 13 August 1995 at the Royal Dublin Showground in Dublin, Ireland; however the Rugby Football League provided no financial support to either team. Luckily the Scotland team managed to get sponsored, the money was used for the ferry crossing, but each individual player had to pay for basic accommodation; the Scotland squad was made up of players who had played in the student squads, but a few professionals were included. Just before the start of the match, after the Scottish team had spent a night at a youth hostel, the Irish Rugby Football Union prevented the teams from getting changed at the arranged Blackrook College.
A new location was found but it was half a mile away from the ground, so the players had to walk that distance in their playing kit. The match was looking like it would be scoreless at half-time until just before the break, centre Lee Child scored to put Ireland ahead. After the break Scotland hit back, Sean Cusack scoring Scotland's first try. Gavin Manclark scored to propel Scotland into the lead; this did not last long though. Ireland scored again, with Seamus McCallion going over. Four minutes in the 69th minute, Scotland scored two tries with Manclark and Shelford sealing the eight points. However, this was not enough as Ketteridge had only kicked three conversions compared to Ireland's Ian Devery who had kicked five; the match finished with Ireland winning 26 -- 22. After this international Scotland were allowed to take place in the Emerging Nations Tournament, to be held in England. On 16 October 1995 at Featherstone they faced Russia, playing international rugby league since 1991, in their opening game in Group A. Coached by former Great Britain and England player, George Fairbairn, who put together a team of former Scotland students, rugby union players, a few league professionals including Alan Tait, who played for Leeds, who would captain the side.
The whole of the Scotland team had hired kilts to be worn pre-match. The game started off well for Scotland, and minutes Tait doubled the Bravehearts lead. But the Russia Bears dragged themselves back into the match, stand-off Victor Netchaev scoring first, in the 30th minute Alexander Otradnov scored. Scotland were ahead though at half-time by four points because Russia had failed to convert their tries. In the second half it was all Scotland with only Andrey Scheglov's drop goal adding to the Bears points. On the other hand, former Great Britain international Hugh Waddell, Ali Blee and Tait again all scored to seal a Scottish victory. Scotland's second match was against the United States in Northampton, traditionally a rugby union city; the Tomahawks were made up of AMNRL players but Scotland took a while to get going. In the twelfth minute winger Rory Lewis unexpected put America ahead, which caused The Bravehearts to start playing well for the remainder of the first half, Scotland going into
Other Nationalities rugby league team
The Other Nationalities rugby league team played international, county, rugby league football teams in Europe from 1904 to 1975. The team, created in 1904 to play England in the first rugby league international match, was at first made up of Welsh and Scottish players. However, as rugby league in England grew, more players from other countries were brought over to England to play in the domestic competitions, Other Nationalities were represented by players from Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa; the Other Nationalities team wore green shirts. Two Scottish players featured in the first Rugby League test match, played in 1907 between a Northern Union representative XIII and a team of Other Nationalities, George Frater captaining the victorious Other Nationalities. England were the most regular opponents for the Other Nationalities team, having played them 15 times, but in the 1950s, on entry to the European Nations Cup, they played Wales and France. In 1964 Other Nationalities played their only match in the Southern Hemisphere in a one-off match vs Sydney Colts at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
The match was played as a curtain-raiser to the Australia vs France 3rd Test and was arranged in order to boost the attendance due to France's poor form on tour. The team was made up of foreign players from the NSWRL competition that year plus two Frenchmen that missed selection in France's 3rd Test team. In 1965, Other Nationalities played New Zealand in a Kiwi tour match at Crystal Palace, London. In 1974 and 1975 the team competed in the County Championship, facing Lancashire and Cumbria, twice each over both years. Since 1975 the team became redundant, with Wales and Ireland now having their own separate national teams and European-based New Zealanders now able to play for their country too. However, due to the success of the Australia's All Stars match between the Indigenous All Stars and the NRL All Stars, new England head coach Steve McNamara proposed a plan to revive the concept, under the name Exiles, in 2011 in a hope of providing England with a more challenging opposition in preparation of playing and staying competitive against nations like Australia and New Zealand after the 2010 thrashing of France 60–6 followed by England's poor results in the 2010 Four Nations Tournament.
† 5 April 1904 match, against England, was a 12-a-side game. †† Although from South Africa, David "Dave" Barends represented Great Britain. Exiles rugby league team British Empire XIII Rugby League XIII Rest of the world RL1895 - The First International France defeated in ‘Battle of the Boulevard’
Lyon is the third-largest city and second-largest urban area of France. It is located in the country's east-central part at the confluence of the rivers Rhône and Saône, about 470 km south from Paris, 320 km north from Marseille and 56 km northeast from Saint-Étienne. Inhabitants of the city are called Lyonnais. Lyon had a population of 513,275 in 2015, it is the capital of the region of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes. The Lyon metropolitan area had a population of 2,265,375 in 2014, the second-largest urban area in France; the city is known for its cuisine and gastronomy, historical and architectural landmarks. Lyon was an important area for the production and weaving of silk. Lyon played a significant role in the history of cinema: it is where Auguste and Louis Lumière invented the cinematograph, it is known for its light festival, the Fête des Lumières, which begins every 8 December and lasts for four days, earning Lyon the title of Capital of Lights. Economically, Lyon is a major centre for banking, as well as for the chemical and biotech industries.
The city contains a significant software industry with a particular focus on video games, in recent years has fostered a growing local start-up sector. Lyon hosts the international headquarters of Interpol, the International Agency for Research on Cancer and Euronews, it was ranked 19th globally and second in France for innovation in 2014. It ranked second in 39th globally in Mercer's 2015 liveability rankings. According to the historian Dio Cassius, in 43 BC, the Roman Senate ordered the creation of a settlement for Roman refugees of war with the Allobroges; these refugees had been expelled from Vienne and were now encamped at the confluence of the Saône and Rhône rivers. The foundation was built on Fourvière hill and called Colonia Copia Felix Munatia, a name invoking prosperity and the blessing of the gods; the city became referred to as Lugdunum. The earliest translation of this Gaulish place-name as "Desired Mountain" is offered by the 9th-century Endlicher Glossary. In contrast, some modern scholars have proposed a Gaulish hill-fort named Lugdunon, after the Celtic god Lugus, dúnon.
The Romans recognised that Lugdunum's strategic location at the convergence of two navigable rivers made it a natural communications hub. The city became the starting point of the principal Roman roads in the area, it became the capital of the province, Gallia Lugdunensis. Two Emperors were born in this city: Claudius, whose speech is preserved in the Lyon Tablet in which he justifies the nomination of Gallic Senators, Caracalla. Early Christians in Lyon were martyred for their beliefs under the reigns of various Roman emperors, most notably Marcus Aurelius and Septimius Severus. Local saints from this period include Blandina and Epipodius, among others. In the second century AD, the great Christian bishop of Lyon was Irenaeus. To this day, the archbishop of Lyon is still referred to as "Primat des Gaules". Burgundians fleeing the destruction of Worms by the Huns in 437 were re-settled at Lugdunum. In 443 the Romans established the Kingdom of the Burgundians, Lugdunum became its capital in 461.
In 843, by the Treaty of Verdun, Lyon went to the Holy Roman Emperor Lothair I. It was made part of the Kingdom of Arles. Lyon did not come under French control until the 14th century. Fernand Braudel remarked, "Historians of Lyon are not sufficiently aware of the bi-polarity between Paris and Lyon, a constant structure in French development...from the late Middle Ages to the Industrial Revolution". In the late 15th century, the fairs introduced by Italian merchants made Lyon the economic counting house of France; the Bourse, built in 1749, resembled a public bazaar where accounts were settled in the open air. When international banking moved to Genoa Amsterdam, Lyon remained the banking centre of France. During the Renaissance, the city's development was driven by the silk trade, which strengthened its ties to Italy. Italian influence on Lyon's architecture is still visible among historic buildings. In the 1400s and 1500s Lyon was a key centre of literary activity and book publishing, both of French writers and of Italians in exile.
In 1572, Lyon was a scene of mass violence by Catholics against Protestant Huguenots in the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre. Two centuries Lyon was again convulsed by violence when, during the French Revolution, the citizenry rose up against the National Convention and supported the Girondins; the city was besieged by Revolutionary armies for over two months before surrendering in October 1793. Many buildings were destroyed around the Place Bellecour, while Jean-Marie Collot d'Herbois and Joseph Fouché administered the execution of more than 2,000 people; the Convention ordered that its name be changed to "Liberated City" and a plaque was erected that proclaimed "Lyons made war on Liberty. A decade Napoleon ordered the reconstruction of all the buildings demolished during this period; the Convention was not the only target within Lyon during the 1789-1799 French Revolution. After the National Convention faded into history, the French Directory appeared and days after the September 4, 1797, Coup of 18 Fructidor, a Directory's commissioner was assassinated in Ly
Ireland men's national rugby league team
The Ireland men's national rugby league team, known as the Wolfhounds, is organised by Rugby League Ireland. The representative team is dominated by players from the Super League and sometimes includes players from the Australasian National Rugby League. Ireland is represented by an Ireland A side, made up of players from the domestic Irish competition. Since Ireland began competing in international rugby league in 1995, it has participated in the 1995 Rugby League Emerging Nations Tournament, the 1996 Super League World Nines, three Rugby League World Cups – 2000, 2008 and 2013, they have competed in the Rugby League European Nations Cup and Victory Cup. Ireland A compete in the St Patrick's Day Challenge in the Amateur Four Nations. Irish players have in the past been selected to play for the Great Britain side, one recent example being Cork-born Brian Carney. However, since the Great Britain team was split into individual nations in 2007, it is unlikely that this situation will arise again.
The seeds of modern-day Rugby League in Ireland were sown in 1989 when Brian Corrigan founded the Dublin Blues, a club, used by union players to keep fit during the summer by playing matches against touring British teams. In 1995 the British RFL established Ireland's first development officer and that year Ireland played against the United States in Washington on St Patricks Day with Ireland winning 24-22. Wigan Warriors player Joe Lydon came on as a substitute despite him being there as manager. Huddersfield Giants coach Terry Flanagan and former Great Britain international Niel Wood were the joint coaches. In August 1996 Ireland beat Scotland at the RDS Arena in Dublin as a curtain raiser to the charity shield match between Leeds Rhinos and Wigan Warriors. Former Great Britain player Des Foy played for Ireland. Following their appearance at the 1995 Emerging Nations Tournament they were invited to the Super League World Nines in Fiji where they finished 8th. Prior to the tournament Ireland played a game of touch rugby against Australia in Fiji's National Stadium on 20 February going down 12-20.
That year Ireland returned to the USA to play in the St Patrick's Day match winning 14-12 The Irish rugby league team is one of many Irish teams that draws its players from across the island of Ireland, it utilises the Four Provinces Flag of Ireland and the anthem "Ireland's Call". Ireland were included in the tournament held in England and were placed in Group 2 alongside Moldova and Morocco. Ireland beat Moldova 48-24 before beating Morocco 42-6 to progress to the final. Gigg Lane in Bury was the venue for the final against Cook Islands but Ireland lost 6-22. Coached by Terry Flanagan, Ireland's squad included professionals Des Foy and Martin Crompton in an otherwise domestic based squad 1997 saw more England-based Super League players making themselves available by use of the grandparent rule; the Irish team improved its standards but this development gave less opportunity for Irish-based players to get a chance to play. However, Irish-based players were included in the Irish squad for the triangular tournaments in 1998 against France and Scotland and 1999 against Scotland and Wales.
Their success was enough to earn a place in the 2000 World Cup. Finishing top of their group, the Irish lost 26–16 to England in the quarter-finals, but the performance set the scene for future developments in Ireland. Ireland were drawn against Lebanon and Russia in Europe's 2008 Rugby League World Cup Qualifying Pool Two. Ireland topped the group with a 16–16 draw with Lebanon at Dewsbury on 2 November 2007; the draw meant Ireland qualified for the 2008 World Cup on points difference from Lebanon as both nations gained the same number of group points. At the 2008 World Cup in Australia, Ireland were in Group C along with Samoa, they lost to Tonga on 27 October in Parramatta, but were victorious against Samoa, again in Parramatta, on 5 November and topped the group on points difference. As the group winners, they played Fiji, winners of Group B, for a chance to qualify for the semi-final. Fiji won so Ireland were eliminated. For the 2013 World Cup being staged in England, Wales and Ireland. Ireland have been drawn in group A alongside England and 2008 World Cup rivals Fiji.
Ireland have been granted automatic entry to the tournament due to their strong showing in the 2008 World Cup Mark Aston the head coach and driving force behind the Sheffield Eagles as been confirmed as the head coach of Rugby League Ireland. His appointment was announced at a press conference in Sheffield on Tuesday 24 May 2011 and he is confirmed in the role for the World Cup in 2013. Ireland kicked off their campaign with a shock 36-12 win over Italy in Cairns. In the next pool match Ireland lost a narrow match to PNG 14-6 with PNG needing a 78th minute try to win the game. Ireland's final pool match was against Wales in Perth where they ran out comfortable winners 34-6. Ireland did not progress to the next round of the tournament despite winning more games than Lebanon or Samoa who qualified for the last 8; the following tournaments is a list of notable international competitions that Ireland has been competing in since their existence in 1995. A red box around the year indicates tournaments played within Ireland Squad selected for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup qualifiers.
England national rugby league team
The England national rugby league team represents England in international rugby league. The team formed from the Great Britain team which represented Wales and Ireland, is run under the auspices of the Rugby Football League, it participates in the Rugby League World Cup, Four Nations and Test matches. The team dates to 1904, when they played against a mixture of Scottish players in Wigan; until the 1950s, they toured Australia and New Zealand and played both home and away matches against neighbours Wales and France, but when it was decided that Great Britain would tour the Southern Hemisphere instead of England and Wales became the only regular opponents. Their first appearance in the Rugby League World Cup was in 1975, they finished runners-up in 1975, 1995 and 2017. England competed in the European Nations Cup and in 2006, an England'A' team competed for the Federation Shield. England's main rivals were Wales and France, with the rivalries stretching back to 1908 and 1934 respectively. England's main rivals now are New Zealand.
Traditionally a predominantly white kit is worn including white socks. However the jersey features some form of red, like red stripes, crosses or chevrons; these colours are similar to other English sporting teams and are the colours used on the national flag. In 2008, a new kit was introduced featuring a red cross on the front and red strips down the sides of the jersey and socks were white too with red strips. In 2008, the Rugby Football League chose to abandon the traditional English lion on the badge in favour of a much simpler shield and cross design; the team is ranked third in the world, behind Australia and New Zealand. Wayne Bennett is the head coach, Sean O'Loughlin the captain. In 1895, twenty-one clubs split with the Rugby Football Union, citing that they wanted to play professionally, formed the Northern Rugby Football Union; the twenty-one clubs were all from Northern England and the players were working class. However it was not just English players who made the switch and Welsh players switched allegiance to the new code, wanting payments for playing.
Switching heightened in the early 20th century with more Scottish and Welsh players leaving the RFU than before. The England national rugby union team had been playing international matches since 1871, but it was not until 1904, nine years after the formation of the new code, that an international rugby league match was played. At the start of 1903 season the Northern Union thought about international matches and scheduled a match for England on New Year's Day 1904 in Oldham. On that day though, the ground was frosty and the match was cancelled and it was rescheduled for April. On 5 April 1904 England competed against a team called "Other Nationalities", who were made up of ten Welshman and two Scotsman, including George Frater, who captained the side, it was a period of experimentation for the Northern Union and each team had twelve players, not thirteen. At Central Park, Wigan the ground was muddy and in poor condition, however the match went ahead. England steamed into a 3–0 lead, from a try by Warrington's Jackie Fish.
This is despite Salford's James Lomas arriving late and causing England to start the match with eleven players. Fish missed the conversion and so the Other Nationalities were able to level the scores a little Welshman Thomas crashing over for a try; the conversion was missed and going into half-time the score was tied 3–3. In the second half Thomas went over for another try before Wigan's Harris sealed a 9–3 win for the Other Nationalities in the final minutes of the match. A total of 6,000 spectators turned up for the match, considered a poor showing despite a Broughton Rangers v Bradford cup clash being scheduled on the same day. In 1905 a match between the two sides was played at Bradford; this time England won 26–11 though they were losing 11–0 at half-time. Wigan's Jim Leytham scored four tries in a record that still stand today; the match was played with fifteen players on each side and so was the 1906 match. Played in Wigan again, the match finished a 3–3 draw; the concept was abandoned after the 1906 match.
By 1908 the game had expanded much more into Australia, New Zealand and Wales and England began playing those teams. Harold Wagstaff made his debut for England in 1908 against the touring Kangaroos team at 17 years and 228 days; the Other Nationalities side did return in 1921. An England side beat the Australasian team of the 1921–22 Kangaroo tour of Great Britain 4–5 at Highbury. England played only one international between 10 May 1956 and 7 November 1968 an 18–6 victory at Headingley Rugby Stadium, Leeds. England played at the World Cup in 1975 coached by Alex Murphy, played over several months in both hemispheres on a league basis. Great Britain would represent England in the World Cup, but the RLIF wanted to capitalise on the large amount of Welsh players in the game at the time, so England and Wales fielded separate teams. England won a 20 -- 2 victory over France in Leeds in March. In June the Lions suffered their first defeat in just their second match of the tournament, losing 12–7 against a strong Wales side in Brisbane.
A little England managed to hold on for a draw against Australia in Sydney, the final score being 10–10. And they picked up a point in Auckland, drawing 17–17 against New Zealand. At the end of October, after the domestic season had finished, England beat the Welsh 22–16 in Warrington and crossed the English Channel to thrash a French side 48–2 in Bordeaux. Bradford played host the England versus New Zealand match, in which England won comfortably 27–12. At the start of November, England sque