Liversedge RFC was a (semi) professional rugby league club.
The club was based in Liversedge, a township in the former parish of Birstall, in the metropolitan borough of Kirklees, West Yorkshire, England.
The club was involved in the momentous meeting at the George Hotel, Huddersfield in 1895.
And after the schism, the club became founder members of the Northern Rugby Football Union (now Rugby Football League) and played for seven seasons from 1895–96 to 1901–02
Only limited County League information is available for season (1901–02).
There is little evidence about the early Liversedge club other than it was founded in 1877.
Yorkshire Rugby Union League |1892-93 Finished 7th, P18 W7 L9 D2 PF130 PA108 PTS16 |1893-94 Finished 4th P22 W11 L8 D3 PF166 PA106 PTS25
Prior to the Schism, Liversedge, like many other clubs from Lancashire (and Yorkshire), had suffered punishment by the RFU for “broken time“ payments.
And so Liversedge, represented by a Mr. J H Hampshire, attended a meeting at The George Hotel, Huddersfield, together with the with representatives of 21 other clubs, and agreed to form a Northern Rugby Football Union.
In season 1896–97 the league was divided into Yorkshire and Lancashire, Liversedge playing in the former section, where they would stay for the remainder of their (semi) professional existence. They did slightly better, finishing in 11th position out of 16 teams.
In the following four seasons, still in the Yorkshire section, seasons 1897–98, 1898–99, 1899–00 & 1900–01 they finished bottom in every season except 1898–99 when they managed to finish second bottom, in each case out of the 16 clubs.
In the final season, 1901–02 they yet again won the wooden spoon, finishing 14th out of 14 teams, with only six points.
A local article states “Although Liversedge RFC were founder members of the Rugby League, strangely they have no team now, and no particular Rugby League heritage. The game is still popular locally with many supporting other local teams namely Bradford Bulls. Dewsbury Rams & Batley Bulldogs although strangely not Huddersfield Giants”, which maybe shows that the club were just in the right place at the right time (or maybe “wrong” time).
And the history of Liversedge F.C. states that “Liversedge Football Club was founded in 1910 following the demise of the old Liversedge Rugby Club which had been a member of the Northern Union which, in turn, was the forerunner to the Rugby League. It was one of a number of clubs which switched codes around that time”.
If this statement is true, it could be assumed that after losing the position in the Yorkshire Senior Competition, the club played for several years in a lower league.
Today the town is represented by Liversedge ARLFC who play at Primrose Lane (off Bradford Road)
Players of Note
Harry Varley (b 25/11/1867 to d 21/11/1915) played rugby union for England v Scotland 1892 and at club level for Liversedge.
He later played Rugby League for Liversedge (24.12.1887v Kirkstall-92?) and Oldham.
Robert "Bob" Wood (b 1873) played rugby union for England v Ireland in 1894 and at club level for Liversedge. He later played Rugby League for Liversedge (1891-?).
Club Scoring Record
|In a Season|
|Highest League Position||15||1895–96||RL||out of 22 clubs|
|Lowest League Position||16||1897–98||Yorks Sen||out of 16 clubs|
|and||16||1899–00||Yorks Sen||out of 16 clubs|
|and||16||1900–01||Yorks Sen||out of 16 clubs|
|Most League Points||34||1895–96||RL||out of possible 84 = 41%|
|or||16||1896–97||Yorks Sen||out of possible 60 = 43%|
|Least League Points||6||1900–01||Yorks Sen||out of possible 60 = 10%|
|Most Points Scored (PF)||261||1895–96||RL||In 42 games = 6.21/game|
|Most Points Conceded (PA)||449||1897–98||Yorks Sen||In 30 games = 2.53/game|
|Least Points Scored (PF)||43||1900–01||Yorks Sen||In 30 games = 1.43/game|
|Least Points Conceded (PA)||233||1896–97||Yorks Sen||In 30 games = 5.87/game|
|Best Points Difference||-57||1896–97||Yorks Sen||In 30 games|
|Worst Points Difference||-343||1900–01||Yorks Sen||In 30 games|
The club did not win any trophies. But got to the Rugby Union final in the Yorkshire Challenge Cup (1888-89 season v Otley) Lost by Otley G1,T1,M4 18v16 Liversedge G1,T0,M4. (g)A Goal Kick from Try=5 points,Dropped Goal/Goal Kick=4 points,(t)Try=2 points,(m)Miner=3 points.
Club League Record
|Season||Competition||Pos||Team Name||Pl||W||D||L||PW||PA||Diff||Pts||%||No of teams in league||Notes||Ref|
|Only limited County League information is available for this season.|
Pl = Games Played: W = Win; D = Draw; L = Lose; PF = Points For; PA = Points Against; Diff = Points Difference (+ or -); Pts = League Points
League points: for win = 2; for draw = 1; for loss = 0.
Several fixtures & results
|1895–96||Sat 07–03-1896||RL||Wigan||Folly Fields||A||Lost||0-25||1|||
|1895–96||Thu 16–04-1896||RL||St Helens||H||H||Won||7-14|||
|1895 –96||Thu 16–04-1896||RL||St Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Lost||13-3|||
|1896–97||Sat 26–0 9-1896||YSC||Hull||H||H||Lost||0-5|||
|1897–98||26–02-1898||CC R1||Widnes||Lowerhouse Lane||A||Lost||0-26||2|||
CC Rx = Challenge Cup Round x; YC Rx =Yorkshire Cup Competition; YSC =Yorkshire Senior Competition
Notes and Comments
1 - Folly Fields is the stadium used by Wigan at the time until 1901. They then became sub-tenants of Springfield Park See below - Note 3.
2 - Lowerhouse Lane is the original site of the current ground used by Widnes. It was renamed Naughton Park in 1932 in honour of club secretary, Tom Naughton - and later renamed Halton Stadium after being completely rebuilt in 1997.
3 - Wigan became sub-tenants of Springfield Park, which they shared with Wigan United AFC, playing their first game there on 14 September 1901 at which a crowd of 4,000 saw them beat Morecambe 12–0, and the last game on 28 April 1902 when Wigan beat the Rest of Lancashire Senior Competition. A temporary ground was necessary to span the period between moving from Folly Fields and the new ground at Central Park being constructed.
British rugby league system
1895–96 Northern Rugby Football Union season
1896–97 Northern Rugby Football Union season
1897–98 Northern Rugby Football Union season
1898–99 Northern Rugby Football Union season
1899–1900 Northern Rugby Football Union season
1900–01 Northern Rugby Football Union season
1901–02 Northern Rugby Football Union season
The Great Schism – Rugby League View
The Great Schism – Rugby Union View
Rugby league county leagues
List of defunct rugby league clubs
Robert “Bob” Wood
Liversedge sporting history
- Genuki.org.uk - BIRSTALL: Geographical and Historical information from the year 1868.
- J C Lindley with personal recollections by D W Armitage (1973). 100 Years of Rugby - The History of Wakefield Trinity Football Club. The Wakefield Trinity Centenary Committee. pp. 34 and 35.
- "Cherry and White".
- "Liversedge – not a bad place to live".
- "History of Liversedge FC".
- "Liversedge ARFC official website".
- "Widnes History".
- "Saints Heritage Society".
- "Warington History".
- 1896–97 Northern Rugby Football Union season at wigan.rlfans.com
- Hull&Proud Fixtures & Results 1896/1897
- Widnes Vikings - One team, one passion Season In Review - 1896–97
- Saints Heritage Society
- Warington History
- RL All time records
- History of Liversedge FC
- Liversedge ARLFC official website
- Liversedge – not a bad place to live