The Leigh Centurions are a professional rugby league club in Leigh, Greater Manchester, who compete in the Championship. The club was founded in 1878 and is one of the original twenty-two clubs that formed the Northern Rugby Football Union in 1895. Leigh have been Rugby League Champions twice, in 1906 and 1982, have won the Challenge Cup twice, in 1921 and 1971; the club was known as Leigh until the 1995-96 season, when it adopted the name Centurions. Leigh RFC was founded in 1878 by a surveyor named Fred Ulph. Leigh's first practice match was on 5 October 1878 at Buck's Farm in Pennington and their first game was against Eccles two weeks later. In 1879, the club played there for 10 years. Leigh came to the attention of the wider district in 1885 when they had a 23 match unbeaten run with 21 wins and 2 draws; as attendances grew, improvements were made to the ground and the field's slope was levelled. The club moved to Frog Hall Field known as Mather Lane in 1889; the pitch was drained and levelled, a 10 foot high hoarding was built around the ground and 500-seater stand was erected.
The first game at Mather Lane was played on 7 September 1889 against Aspull and Leigh forward James Pendlebury scored the first try in front of a 2,000 crowd. The 1894–95 season saw a new stand open on the south side in a momentous year for Rugby football. After years of arguments with the Rugby Football Union concerning player expenses, 22 teams including Leigh decided to form a breakaway governing body – the Northern Union; the first season of the new game kicked off in September with Leigh recording a 6–3 loss against Leeds. Leigh finished ninth that season. Leigh had a great start in the new Union, they played well and the crowds increased, however they had mixed fortunes over the next few years; as the new century began, Leigh struggled and despite winning the West Lancashire and Border Towns Cup, the crowds and their fortunes dropped dramatically. In the 1904–05 season; the game was played on 4 March 1905 and Leigh won 3–0 in front of 13,000 spectators. The Northern Union, after being alerted by Wigan, alleged that Leigh player Dick Silcock had played illegally after being absent from work in the week before the game without a permit breaking the'working clause'.
Leigh were found guilty of fielding an ineligible player and ordered to replay without expenses and for Leigh the gate receipts to be given to the Northern Union. Wigan won the replay 5–0 and Leigh were so incensed that the club considered leaving the Northern Union and starting an Association football club. Leigh became a limited company as a result of this financial blow. In 1906, Leigh were Northern Union champions after a season with an 80% win rate. Many clubs complained that Leigh had provided themselves with an easy fixture list, ducking the challenge of the stronger clubs and play-offs were brought in. In 1907–08, Leigh and Wigan were again in conflict in the Lancashire County Cup. An attendance record was set when 17,000 spectators watched Wigan draw 3 -- 3 at Mather Lane. Leigh lost the replay at Central Park but appealed for another replay because a Wigan player had left the field during the game without the referee's permission, Leigh lost the second replay. In 1909, Mather Lane was upgraded when the embankment on the popular side was extended and raised giving the ground a capacity of 20,000 spectators.
Around this time Leigh named its first coach – Jim Jolley. Over the next few years, Leigh had little crowd numbers dropped dramatically. However, when the First World War began in summer 1914, the Northern Union believed that it would be over by Christmas and the season began as normal. Leigh performed poorly. Competitive rugby was suspended in 1915. Competitive rugby resumed in 1918 with an interim season from January to May. Leigh finished 2nd. Leigh had limited success just after the Leigh directors set about building a new team, they had 19 players and though their league performances were patchy, they had some success in the cups. In the 1920–21 season, in a round of the Lancashire Cup in which Leigh played Rochdale Hornets, an attendance record was set at Mather Lane when a crowd of 21,500 saw Leigh win 9–7. Leigh lost to Broughton Rangers. In 1921 the club won the Challenge Cup with a shock 13–0 victory over Halifax at the Cliff in Broughton, Salford. In 1934, Leigh played under floodlights for the first time.
Leigh were the first Lancashire side to win the Challenge Cup since 1911. Over the following seasons were quite successful in the cup; the club attracted a Leigh v Wigan derby was guaranteed to draw in the spectators. One such meeting when Leigh met Wigan in the first round of the Challenge Cup in 1923–24, saw a crowd of 33,500 at Mather Lane. However, the 1920s, 1930s were marred by strikes and periods of economic depression; the government levied an entertainment tax of around 20% on gate receipts, at a time when clubs were experiencing difficulties balancing the books. For Leigh the mini-boom was over. In 1924–25 Leigh slipped to 20th in the league and suffered a record 9-52 defeat in the league game at Central Park on Christmas Day. In December 1925 star player Abe Johnson was transferred to Oldham for £650 and Leigh's decline continued the next season when they slipped to 4th from bottom in the league; the club suffered some heavy defeats as confidence left the team. 1926 was the year of the General Strike and Leigh admitted miners free of charge for many home games.
Leigh had finishing 7th in the league. Around this time, Mather Lane was improved including the construc
Cumbria is a ceremonial and non-metropolitan county in North West England. The county and Cumbria County Council, its local government, came into existence in 1974 after the passage of the Local Government Act 1972. Cumbria's county town is Carlisle, in the north of the county, the only other major urban area is Barrow-in-Furness on the southwestern tip of the county; the county of Cumbria consists of six districts and in 2008 had a population of just under half a million. Cumbria is one of the most sparsely populated counties in the United Kingdom, with 73.4 people per km2. Cumbria is the third largest county in England by area, is bounded to the north by the Scottish council areas of Dumfries and Galloway and Scottish Borders, to the west by the Irish Sea, to the south by Lancashire, to the southeast by North Yorkshire, to the east by County Durham and Northumberland. Cumbria is predominantly rural and contains the Lake District National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site considered one of England's finest areas of natural beauty, serving as inspiration for artists and musicians.
A large area of the southeast of the county is within the Yorkshire Dales National Park while the east of the county fringes the North Pennines AONB. Much of Cumbria is mountainous, it contains every peak in England over 3,000 feet above sea level, with Scafell Pike at 3,209 feet being the highest point of England. An upland and rural area, Cumbria's history is characterised by invasions and settlement, as well as battles and skirmishes between the English and the Scots. Notable historic sites in Cumbria include Carlisle Castle, Furness Abbey, Hardknott Roman Fort, Brough Castle and Hadrian's Wall; the county of Cumbria was created in April 1974 through an amalgamation of the administrative counties of Cumberland and Westmorland, to which parts of Lancashire and the West Riding of Yorkshire were added. During the Neolithic period the area contained an important centre of stone axe production, products of which have been found across Great Britain. During this period stone circles and henges began to be built across the county and today'Cumbria has one of the largest number of preserved field monuments in England'.
While not part of the region conquered in the Romans' initial conquest of Britain in 43 AD, most of modern-day Cumbria was conquered in response to a revolt deposing the Roman-aligned ruler of the Brigantes in 69 AD. The Romans built a number of fortifications in the area during their occupation, the most famous being UNESCO World Heritage Site Hadrian's Wall which passes through northern Cumbria. At the end of the period of British history known as Roman Britain the inhabitants of Cumbria were Cumbric-speaking native Romano-Britons who were descendants of the Brigantes and Carvetii that the Roman Empire had conquered in about AD 85. Based on inscriptional evidence from the area, the Roman civitas of the Carvetii seems to have covered portions of Cumbria; the names Cumbria, Cymru and Cumberland are derived from the name these people gave themselves, *kombroges in Common Brittonic, which meant "compatriots". Although Cumbria was believed to have formed the core of the Early Middle Ages Brittonic kingdom of Rheged, more recent discoveries near Galloway appear to contradict this.
For the rest of the first millennium, Cumbria was contested by several entities who warred over the area, including the Brythonic Celtic Kingdom of Strathclyde and the Anglian kingdom of Northumbria. Most of modern-day Cumbria was a principality in the Kingdom of Scotland at the time of the Norman conquest of England in 1066 and thus was excluded from the Domesday Book survey of 1086. In 1092 the region was incorporated into England; the region was dominated by the many Anglo-Scottish Wars of the latter Middle Ages and early modern period and the associated Border Reivers who exploited the dynamic political situation of the region. There were at least three sieges of Carlisle fought between England and Scotland, two further sieges during the Jacobite risings. After the Jacobite Risings of the eighteenth century, Cumbria became a more stable place and, as in the rest of Northern England, the Industrial Revolution caused a large growth in urban populations. In particular, the west-coast towns of Workington and Barrow-in-Furness saw large iron and steel mills develop, with Barrow developing a significant shipbuilding industry.
Kendal and Carlisle all became mill town, with textiles and biscuits among the products manufactured in the region. The early nineteenth century saw the county gain fame as the Lake Poets and other artists of the Romantic movement, such as William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, lived among, were inspired by, the lakes and mountains of the region; the children's writer Beatrix Potter wrote in the region and became a major landowner, granting much of her property to the National Trust on her death. In turn, the large amount of land owned by the National Trust assisted in the formation of the Lake District National Park in 1951, which remains the largest National Park in England and has come to dominate the identity and economy of the county; the county of Cumbria was created in 1974 from the traditional counties of Cumberland and Westmorland, the Cumberland County Borough of Carlisle, along with the North Lonsdale or Furness part of Lancashire referred to as "Lancashire North of
Promotion and relegation
In sports leagues and relegation is a process where teams are transferred between multiple divisions based on their performance for the completed season. The best-ranked team in the lower division are promoted to the higher division for the next season, the worst-ranked team in the higher division are relegated to the lower division for the next season. In some leagues, playoffs or qualifying rounds are used to determine rankings; this process can continue through several levels of divisions, with teams being exchanged between levels 1 and 2, levels 2 and 3, levels 3 and 4, so on. During the season, teams that are high enough in the league table that they would qualify for promotion are sometimes said to be in the promotion zone, those at the bottom are in the relegation zone. An alternate system of league organisation, used in the US and Canada is a closed model based on licensing or franchises; this maintains the same teams from year to year, with occasional admission of expansion teams and relocation of existing teams, with no team movement between the major league and minor leagues.
The number of teams exchanged between the divisions is always identical. Exceptions occur when the higher division wishes to change the size of its membership, or has lost one or more of its clubs and wishes to restore its previous membership size, in which case fewer teams are relegated from that division, or more teams are accepted for promotion from the division below; such variations cause a "knock-on" effect through the lower divisions. For example, in 1995 the Premier League voted to reduce its numbers by two and achieved the desired change by relegating four teams instead of the usual three, whilst allowing only two promotions from Football League Division One. In the absence of such extraordinary circumstances, the pyramid-like nature of most European sports league systems can still create knock-on effects at the regional level. For example, in a higher league with a large geographical footprint and multiple feeder leagues each representing smaller geographical regions, should most or all of the relegated teams in the higher division come from one particular region the number of teams to be promoted or relegated from each of the feeder leagues may have to be adjusted, or one or more teams playing near the boundary between the feeder leagues may have to transfer from one feeder league to another to maintain numerical balance.
The system is said to be the defining characteristic of the "European" form of professional sports league organization. Promotion and relegation have the effect of allowing the maintenance of a hierarchy of leagues and divisions, according to the relative strength of their teams, they maintain the importance of games played by many low-ranked teams near the end of the season, which may be at risk of relegation. In contrast, a low-ranked US or Canadian team's final games serve little purpose, in fact losing may be beneficial to such teams, yielding a better position in the next year's draft. Although not intrinsic to the system, problems can occur due to the differing monetary payouts and revenue-generating potential that different divisions provide to their clubs. For example, financial hardship has sometimes occurred in leagues where clubs do not reduce their wage bill once relegated; this occurs for one of two reasons: first, the club can't move underperforming players on, or second, the club is gambling on being promoted back straight away and is prepared to take a financial loss for one or two seasons to do so.
Some leagues offer "parachute payments" to its relegated teams for the following year. The payouts are higher than the prize money received by some non-relegated teams and are designed to soften the financial hit that clubs take whilst dropping out of the Premier League. However, in many cases these parachute payments just serve to inflate the costs of competing for promotion among the lower division clubs as newly relegated teams retain a financial advantage. In some countries and at certain levels, teams in line for promotion may have to satisfy certain non-playing conditions in order to be accepted by the higher league, such as financial solvency, stadium capacity, facilities. If these are not satisfied, a lower-ranked team may be promoted in their place, or a team in the league above may be saved from relegation. While the primary purpose of the promotion/relegation system is to maintain competitive balance, it may be used as a disciplinary tool in special cases. On several occasions, the Italian Football Federation has relegated clubs found to have been involved in match-fixing.
This occurred most in 2006, when the season's initial champions Juventus were relegated to Serie B, two other teams were relegated but restored to Serie A after appeal. In some Communist nations several in Europe after World War II, clubs were promoted and relegated for political reasons rather than performance; this was made evident in the late eighties by teams such as Romanian Steaua București and Yugoslav Red Star Belgrade, both winners of the European Champions League despite the rampant level of corruption in their Communist local leagues. Promotion and relegation may be used in international sports tournaments. In tennis, the Davis Cup and Fed Cup have promotion and relegation, with a'World Group' (split into two divisions in the Fe
Bradford is a city in West Yorkshire, England, in the foothills of the Pennines, 8.6 miles west of Leeds, 16 miles north-west of Wakefield. Bradford became a municipal borough in 1847, received its charter as a city in 1897. Following local government reform in 1974, city status was bestowed upon the City of Bradford metropolitan borough. Bradford forms part of the West Yorkshire Urban Area, which in 2001 had a population of 1.5 million and is the fourth largest in the United Kingdom, with Bradford itself having a population of 529,870. Part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, Bradford rose to prominence in the 19th century as an international centre of textile manufacture wool, it was a boomtown of the Industrial Revolution, amongst the earliest industrialised settlements becoming the "wool capital of the world". The area's access to a supply of coal, iron ore and soft water facilitated the growth of Bradford's manufacturing base, which, as textile manufacture grew, led to an explosion in population and was a stimulus to civic investment.
The textile sector in Bradford fell into decline from the mid-20th century. Bradford has since emerged as a tourist destination, becoming the first UNESCO City of Film with attractions such as the National Science and Media Museum, Bradford City Park, the Alhambra theatre and Cartwright Hall. Bradford has faced similar challenges to the rest of post-industrial Northern England, including deindustrialisation, social unrest and economic deprivation; the name Bradford is derived from the Old English brad and ford the broad ford which referred to a crossing of the Bradford Beck at Church Bank below the site of Bradford Cathedral, around which a settlement grew in Saxon times. It was recorded as "Bradeford" in 1086. After an uprising in 1070, during William the Conqueror's Harrying of the North, the manor of Bradford was laid waste and is described as such in the Domesday Book of 1086, it became part of the Honour of Pontefract given to Ilbert de Lacy for service to the Conqueror, in whose family the manor remained until 1311.
There is evidence of a castle in the time of the Lacys. The manor passed to the Earl of Lincoln, John of Gaunt, The Crown and private ownership in 1620. By the middle ages Bradford, had become a small town centred on Kirkgate and Ivegate. In 1316 there is mention of a fulling mill, a soke mill where all the manor corn was milled and a market. During the Wars of the Roses the inhabitants sided with House of Lancaster. Edward IV granted the right to hold two annual fairs and from this time the town began to prosper. In the reign of Henry VIII Bradford exceeded Leeds as a manufacturing centre. Bradford grew over the next two-hundred years as the woollen trade gained in prominence. During the Civil War the town was garrisoned for the Parliamentarians and in 1642 was unsuccessfully attacked by Royalist forces from Leeds. Sir Thomas Fairfax took the command of the garrison and marched to meet the Duke of Newcastle but was defeated; the Parliamentarians retreated to Bradford and the Royalists set up headquarters at Bolling Hall from where the town was besieged leading to its surrender.
The Civil War caused a decline in industry but after the accession of William III and Mary II in 1689 prosperity began to return. The launch of manufacturing in the early 18th century marked the start of the town's development while new canal and turnpike road links encouraged trade. In 1801, Bradford was a rural market town of 6,393 people, where wool spinning and cloth weaving was carried out in local cottages and farms. Bradford was thus not much bigger than nearby Keighley and was smaller than Halifax and Huddersfield; this small town acted as a hub for three nearby townships – Manningham and Great and Little Horton, which were separated from the town by countryside. Blast furnaces were established in about 1788 by Hird, Dawson Hardy at Low Moor and iron was worked by the Bowling Iron Company until about 1900. Yorkshire iron was used for shackles and piston rods for locomotives, colliery cages and other mining appliances where toughness was required; the Low Moor Company made pig iron and the company employed 1,500 men in 1929.
When the municipal borough of Bradford was created in 1847 there were 46 coal mines within its boundaries. Coal output continued to expand, reaching a peak in 1868 when Bradford contributed a quarter of all the coal and iron produced in Yorkshire. In 1825 the wool-combers union called a strike that lasted five-months but workers were forced to return to work through hardship leading to the introduction of machine-combing; this Industrial Revolution led to rapid growth, with wool imported in vast quantities for the manufacture of worsted cloth in which Bradford specialised, the town soon became known as the wool capital of the world. A permanent military presence was established in the city with the completion of Bradford Moor Barracks in 1844. Bradford had ample supplies of locally mined coal to provide the power. Local sandstone was an excellent resource for building the mills, with a population of 182,000 by 1850, the town grew as workers were attracted by jobs in the textile mills. A desperate shortage of water in Bradford Dale was a serious limitation on industrial expansion and improvement in urban sanitary conditions.
In 1854 Bradford Corporation bought the Bradford Water Company and embarked on a huge engineering programme to bring supplies of soft water from Airedale and Nidderdale. By 1882 water supply had radically improved. Meanwhile, urban expansion took place along the routes out of the city towards th
Rugby Football League
The Rugby Football League is the governing body for professional rugby league in England. The name Rugby Football League also referred to the main league competition run by the organisation; this has since been supplanted by Super League, the Championship and League 1. 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 has representatives from BARLA, Combined Services, English Schools Rugby League and Student Rugby League. Tony Adams will take over as the president in 2019, taking over from Andy Burnham. Established as the Northern Rugby Football Union in August 1895 by representatives of twenty-one Rugby Football Union clubs at a meeting at the George Hotel, Huddersfield, it changed its name in 1922 to the Rugby Football League, mirroring its sister organisations overseas, the Australian Rugby Football League and New Zealand Rugby Football League.
The turnover of the RFL was reported as £27m in 2011. On Tuesday 27 August 1895, as a result of an emergency meeting in Manchester, prominent Lancashire rugby clubs Broughton Rangers, Oldham, Rochdale Hornets, St Helens, Warrington and Wigan declared that they would support their Yorkshire colleagues in their proposal to form a Northern Union. Two days 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, but Dewsbury felt unable to comply with the decision; the Cheshire club, had telegraphed the meeting requesting admission to the new organisation and was duly accepted with a second Cheshire club, admitted at the next meeting. The 22 clubs and their years of foundation were: In 1908 the Northern Union's brand of rugby was taken up in Australia and New Zealand; 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 Australia, would go on to excel in the sport and gain significant influence over it over the following century. 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 contested, with a vote 29-1 against recognising BARLA. Thanks to Tom Mitchell, this changed to a unanimous vote of approval for BARLA within 12 months. Maurice Lindsay became the Chief Executive of the RFL in 1992, proposing the Super League, which replaced Championship as the sport's premier league competition from 1996 onwards. Lindsay returned to Wigan in 1999 for his second stint at the club after Sir Rodney Walker 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 major restructuring of the governing body and the appointment of Richard Lewis as executive chairman in May 2002.
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 Croquet Club; the RFL net value has been positive every year since 2004, being £1.7M in 2011. In 2011 a major change to the game was agreed, changing from a winter to a summer game, starting in 2012 with a playing season from March to November, aligning with the Super League, which has played this way since 1996; 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 became the first UK sporting organisation to make the top 100 employers in the Stonewall Index that measures attitudes towards lesbian and bisexual staff. The RFL operates a five-tier system and is responsible for running the top three professional divisions as well as the National Conference League and various regional leagues below that.
The RFL runs two cup competitions for professional clubs and is involved with the organization of the World Club Challenge and World Club Series. The England national rugby league team represent England in international rugby league football tournaments; the team has now seen a revival, having formed from the Great Britain team, who represented Wales and Ireland. The team is run under the auspices of the Rugby Football League; as of 2008, the team now participates in all World Cups, Four Nations, Test matches. The team dates back to 1904 when they played against a mixture of Welsh and Scottish players in Wigan. Since and right up 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. Though, there are some long periods where England played any matches, their first appearance in the Rugby League World Cup was in 1975, since they have become runners-up in 1975 and 1995, the latter tournament being held in England.
In 2008 they competed in the 2008 W
The Bradford Bulls are a professional rugby league club in Bradford, West Yorkshire, England playing in Championship. They have won the Challenge Cup five times, the league championship six times and the World Club Challenge three times. Bradford play their home games at Odsal Stadium; the team jersey is white with red and black chevrons. In 1907, founder member of the Rugby Football League Bradford F. C. switched codes to association football, Bradford Northern was formed by members who wished to continue rugby. Bradford Northern were renamed Bradford Bulls in 1996, at the start of Super League. Bradford's main rivalry was with Leeds; the club entered administration in 2012, again in 2014 and 2016. Several bids were made to take over the club but none were accepted by the administrators, so on 3 January 2017 the club went into liquidation; the RFL announced the criteria and invited bids to form a "new club", which acted as an immediate resurrection of the Bulls which retained the history, club colours, home stadium and a several players from the 2016 squad.
Due to the administration and liquidation, the club started the 2017 season with a 12-point deduction. With a few games left of the 2017 season, Bradford's relegation fears were confirmed and in 2018 they played in League One earning promotion back to the Championship after beating Workington Town on 7 October 2018; the original Bradford Football Club was formed in 1863 and played rugby football, subsequently joining the Rugby Football Union. The club played at Horton Cricket Ground, All Saints Road but were asked to leave because of damage to the pitch, they moved to Laisteridge Lane and North Park Road in Manningham. A nomadic existence continued as they went on to Peel Park Girlington and Apperley Bridge. Bradford Football Club and Bradford Cricket Club bought Park Avenue in 1879 and this resulted in the club becoming "Bradford Cricket and Football Club"; the club's headquarters were at the Talbot Darley Street, The Alexandra, Great Horton Road. The club achieved its first major success by winning the Yorkshire Cup in 1884.
In 1895, along with cross-town neighbours Manningham F. C. Bradford was among 22 clubs to secede from the Rugby Football Union after the historic meeting at the George Hotel in Huddersfield in response to a dispute over "broken time" payments to players who were thus part-time professionals; these 22 clubs formed rugby league football was born. Bradford enjoyed some success in the new competition. In the 1903–04 Northern Rugby Football Union season, the team finished level on points with Salford at the top of the league and won the resulting play-off 5–0. In 1905–06, Bradford beat Salford 5–0 to win the Challenge Cup and were runners-up in the Championship. In 1906–07, Bradford won the Yorkshire County Cup 8–5 against Hull Kingston Rovers. During this time Manningham F. C. had run into financial difficulties and, despite a summer archery contest that generated enough money to ensure their survival, its members were persuaded to swap codes and play association football instead. Manningham was invited to join the Football League in 1903, in an attempt to promote football in a rugby-dominated region, the newly renamed Bradford City A.
F. C. was voted into full membership of the Second Division without having played a game of football, having a complete team or being able to guarantee a ground. The creation of Bradford City led to demands for association football at Park Avenue too; the ground had hosted some football matches including one in the 1880s between Blackburn Rovers and Blackburn Olympic F. C.. In 1895, a Bradford side had beaten a team from Moss Side, Manchester, by 4–1 in front of 3,000 spectators. Following the change at Bradford City, a meeting was called of the Bradford FC members on 15 April 1907 to decide the rugby club's future. An initial vote appeared to favour continuing in rugby league, but opinion shifted towards rugby union and the chairman, Mr Briggs, used his influence to swing the committee behind the proposed move to association football; this act, sometimes referred to as "The Great Betrayal", led to Bradford FC becoming the Bradford Park Avenue Association Football Club. The minority faction decided to split and form a new club to continue playing in the Northern Union, appropriately called "Bradford Northern", which applied for and was granted Bradford FC's place in the 1907–08 Northern Rugby Football Union season.
Bradford Northern's first home ground was the Greenfield Athletic Ground in Dudley Hill, to the south of the city. They based themselves at the Greenfield Hotel. Northern moved to Birch Lane in 1908. Bradford council offered the club a site for a new stadium between Rooley Lane and Mayo Avenue in 1927; however the NRFU said the site was too small and the club kept on looking. Before moving to Odsal, Bradford Northern had had two other homes at Greenfield Athletic Ground in Dudley Hill and at Birch Lane, part of the Bowling Old Lane cricket ground, although at times they had to hire Valley Parade as the capacity at Birch Lane was insufficient for large matches. On 20 June 1933 Bradford Northern signed a ten-year lease with Bradford council for a former quarry being used as a waste dump at Odsal Top, it was turned into the biggest stadium outside Wembley. The Bradford Northern team played its first match there on 1 September 1934. Success came to Bradford in the 1940s with a number of cup wins: the Yorkshire cup in 1940–41, 1942–43, 1944–45, 1945–46, 1948–49 and 1949–50.
In the Championship Bradford found