Stockport RFC was a (semi) professional rugby league club, based in Stockport, in modern day Greater Manchester, England, but historically, and at the time of the club's existence, a part of Cheshire.
The club became founder members of the Northern Rugby Football Union (now Rugby Football League) after the English rugby schism, and resultant breakaway meeting at the George Hotel, Huddersfield in 1895.
There is little evidence about the formation of the club except that it was before 1895.
When the 22 clubs met at The George Hotel, Huddersfield, the representative of Stockport had been unable to attend the meeting personally and so had telegraphed the meeting requesting the club's admission to the new organisation. This was duly accepted.
In the second season 1896–97 the league was divided into Yorkshire and Lancashire, Stockport playing in the latter section, where they would stay for all but one of the remainder of their (semi) professional existence. They finished in 5th position out of 14 teams.
In the fifth season, 1899–00 they improved slightly finishing 9th out of 14 teams.
In season 1900–01, still in the Lancashire Senior League, Stockport dropped to 12th place out the 14 teams.
In season, 1901–02 14 clubs broke away to form the Northern Rugby League. Stockport were not among these and so, together with the remaining clubs and several additions from the lower county leagues, continued in the Lancashire Senior league, which became in effect division 2 (West). A slightly better season saw a mid-table finish in 6th place out of the 13 clubs. Only limited County League information is available for this season (1901–02).
At the end of the 1901–02 season, the County Leagues elected 18 teams to join the new Division 2 (7 from Lancashire and 10 from Yorkshire and new member South Shields) with the existing second competition scrapped. This meant that teams were excluded from the senior competitions leaving them with several options :-
a) Join the new Lancashire League or the Lancashire Combination (reserve grade)
b) Join a new Yorkshire Senior League
c) reverting to amateur status within the Northern Union
d) revert to rugby union
e) turn to Association Football, which many clubs did
In season 1902–03 Stockport joined the new 2nd Division. In this, their eighth and last season among the (semi) professional clubs, Stockport finished 18th out of 18 clubs, bottom of the league with only 11 points, whereas Morecambe, the second bottom, had 20 points.
Details of the club from this point on are sketchy, but according to the information provided in an article on the Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council website :-
"(Stockport) County gained admission to the Second Division of the Football League in 1900, and following this elevation - and consequent requirement for a larger ground - the club moved to its current home of Edgeley Park in 1902, which was then the home of Stockport Rugby League Club. The rugby club folded a few years later, leaving County as sole tenants."
Although this is not confirmed elsewhere, if the dates are correct, it can be assumed that Stockport Rugby (League) Club played in the lower Lancashire League until finally folding in 1904 or 1905.
Stockport Rugby (League) Club, played, for at least part of their existence, at Edgeley Park.
"The stadium was built in 1901 for the (Stockport) rugby league club, before Stockport County moved there in 1902, after needing to find a bigger stadium to play in following their entrance into the Football League two years earlier"
Stockport County Association Football Club started life in Stockport, when the Wycliffe Congressional Church team merged with Heaton Norris FC to form Heaton Norris Rovers FC. In 1890 they were renamed Stockport County to reflect Stockport's status as a County Borough. They originally played at the Heaton Norris Recreation Ground, then various locations until settling at a park on Green Lane, Heaton Norris in 1889. Stockport County were elected to the Second Division of the Football League in 1900, and this elevation led to a requirement for a larger ground. For the start of the 1902–03 season they moved into their current home of Edgeley Park. At the time this was the home of Stockport Rugby (League) Club.
In 1905 (or 1906) Stockport Rugby Club appears to have folded, leaving Stockport County the sole user of the sole tenants of the ground. Edgeley Park has been County's home ever since, and the centenary of the ground was celebrated in 2002.
Club scoring record
|In a Season|
|Highest League Position||5||1896–97||Lancs Sen Comp||Out of 14 clubs|
|Lowest League Position||18||1902–03||2nd Div||Out of 18 clubs|
|Most League Points||32||1895–96||RL||Out of possible 84 = 38%|
|or||30||1896–97||Lancs Sen Comp||Out of possible 52 = 58%|
|Least League Points||11||1902–03||2nd Div||Out of possible 68 = 16%|
|Most Points Scored (PF)||171||1895–96||RL||In 42 games = 4.07/game|
|or||157||1896–97||Lancs Sen Comp||In 26 games = 6.04/game|
|Most Points Conceded (PA)||317||1898–99||Lancs Sen Comp||In 26 games = 12.2/game|
|Least Points Scored (PF)||69||1902–03||2nd Div||In 34 games = 2.03/game|
|Least Points Conceded (PA)||136||1899–00||Lancs Sen Comp||In 26 games = 5.23/game|
|Best Points Difference||20||1896–97||Lancs Sen Comp||In 26 games|
|Worst Points Difference||-276||1902–03||2nd Div||In 26 games|
Club league record
|Season||Competition||Pos||Team Name||Pl||W||D||L||PF||PA||Diff||Pts||% Pts||No of teams in league||Notes||Ref|
|Stockport had 2 points deducted.|
|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 and results
|1895–96||Sat 28 Sep 1895||RL||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Won||3–0|||
|1895–96||26 Oct 1895||RL||Warrington||Edgeley Park||H||Draw||3–3|||
|1895–96||Sat 9 Nov 1895||RL||Hull||Edgeley Park||H||Won||3–0|||
|1895–96||30 Nov 1895||RL||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||0–5|||
|1895–96||Wed 25 Dec 1895||RL||Wigan||Folly Fields||A||Lost||0–16||1|||
|1895–96||Sat 18 Jan 1896||RL||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Won||18–3|||
|1895–96||Sat 7 Mar 1896||RL||Hull||Boulevard||A||Lost||5–15|||
|1895–96||6 Apr 1896||RL||Warrington||Wilderspool||A||Lost||3–14|||
|1895–96||Sun 26 Apr 1896||RL||Wigan||Edgeley Park||H||Won||8–3|||
|1896–97||Sat 12 Sep 1896||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Edgeley Park||H||Won||12–0|||
|1896–97||19 Sep 1896||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Edgeley Park||H||Won||15–5|||
|1896–97||Mon 12 Oct 1896||Friendly||Hull||Boulevard||A||Won||5–0|||
|1896–97||5 Dec 1896||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Won||12–3|||
|1896–97||Sat 19 Dec 1896||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Won||13–6|||
|1896–97||9 Jan 1897||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Lowerhouse Lane||A||Lost||0–9||2|||
|1896–97||13 Feb 1897||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Wilderspool||A||Lost||5–9|||
|1896–97||Sat 13 Mar 1897||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Lost||0–9|||
|1896–97||Wed 17 Mar 1897||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Folly Fields||A||Draw||0–0||1|||
|1897–98||25 Sep 1897||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Wilderspool||A||Lost||7–10|||
|1897–98||27 Nov 1897||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Lowerhouse Lane||A||Lost||0–6|||
|1897–98||Sat 11 Dec 1897||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Won||14–7|||
|1897–98||Sat 8 Jan 1898||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||4–6|||
|1897–98||29 Jan 1898||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Edgeley Park||H||Won||13–3|||
|1897–98||12 Feb 1898||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||5–9|||
|1897–98||Sat 19 Feb 1898||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Lost||0–27|||
|1897–98||Fri 8 Apr 1898||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Folly Fields||A||Draw||5–5||1|||
|1898–99||Sat 8 Oct 1898||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Folly Fields||A||Lost||8–19||1|||
|1898–99||17 Dec 1898||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Wilderspool||A||Lost||6–8|||
|1898–99||7 Jan 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||0–10|||
|1898–99||14 Jan 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Lowerhouse Lane||A||Lost||10–26||2|||
|1898–99||Sat 25 Feb 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Edgeley Park||H||Won||3–0|||
|1898–99||Sat 4 Mar 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||3–13|||
|1898–99||1 Apr 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Edgeley Park||H||Won||12–2|||
|1898–99||Thu 20 Apr 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Lost||10–13|||
|1899–00||9 Sep 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Edgeley Park||H||Won||18–5|||
|1899–00||16 Sep 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Wilderspool||A||Lost||0–15|||
|1899–00||Sat 21 Oct 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Lost||3–17|||
|1899–00||4 Nov 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||0–3|||
|1899–00||Sat 25 Nov 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||3–6|||
|1899–00||30 Dec 1899||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Won||21–3|||
|1899–00||24 Feb 1900||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Lowerhouse Lane||A||Lost||0–2||2|||
|1899–00||10 Mar 1900||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Folly Fields||A||Lost||0–2|||
|1899–00||7 Apr 1900||CC R4||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||0–3|||
|1900–01||22 Sep 1900||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Edgeley Park||H||Won||8–3|||
|1900–01||Sat 6 Oct 1900||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Lost||0–3|||
|1900–01||24 Nov 1900||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Lowerhouse Lane||A||Lost||0–5||2|||
|1900–01||Sat 1 Dec 1900||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Won||5–0|||
|1900–01||23 Feb 1901||Lancs Sen Comp||Warrington||Wilderspool||A||Lost||3–10|||
|1900–01||Sat 9 Mar 1901||CC R2||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Draw||0–0|||
|1900–01||Wed 13 Mar 1901||CC R2 Replay||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||5–11|||
|1900–01||16 Mar 1901||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Won||13–0|||
|1900–01||6 Apr 1901||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Folly Fields||A||Lost||2–9||1|||
|1900–01||13 Apr 1901||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Edgeley Park||H||Won||13–0|||
|1901–02||Sat 12 Oct 1901||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Edgeley Park||H||Won||3–0|||
|1901–02||2 Nov 1901||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Edgeley Park||H||Lost||0–2|||
|1901–02||25 Dec 1901||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Edgeley Park||H||Won||6–5|||
|1901–02||1 Jan 1902||Lancs Sen Comp||Wigan||Springfield Park||A||Lost||3–10||3|||
|1901–02||Sat 18 Jan 1902||Lancs Sen Comp||St. Helens||Knowsley Rd||A||Lost||7–13|||
|1901–02||25 Jan 1902||Lancs Sen Comp||Widnes||Lowerhouse Lane||A||Lost||0–12||2|||
|1902–03||14 Feb 1903||CC R1||Wigan||Springfield Park||A||Lost||0–8||3|||
CC Rx = Challenge Cup Round x; LC Rx = Lancahire Cup Competition; JPT Rx = John Player Trophy; REGAL Rx = Regal Trophy.
Notes and comments
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.
- 1897 Challenge Cup
- Rugby Football League
- 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
- 1902–03 Northern Rugby Football Union season
- British rugby league system
- The Great Schism – Rugby League View
- The Great Schism – Rugby Union View
- Rugby league county leagues
- List of defunct rugby league clubs
- Stockport - sport
- 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.
- 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. 37 and 38.
- "About Stockport County".
- "Stockport County History".
- 324 "Cherry and White" Check
- "Widnes History".
- "Saints Heritage Society".
- aspx "Hull&Proud" Check
- "Warington History". Archived from the original on July 6, 2010.
- 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
- About Stockport County
- Stockport County History
- 100 Years of Rugby - The History of Wakefield Trinity Football Club 1873–1973 by C Lindley with personal recollections by D W Armitage