Interviewees

Interviewees

Alf Burnell

Born in 1924, into a family with 10 other children, Alf Burnell grew up in Hunslet during the tough years of the Depression. Rugby League provided one of the very few weekly highlights for Alf and his friends and, as well as watching the local professional team at Parkside, they spent many hours Read More...

Andy Coldrick

An enthusiastic supporter of Bramley Rugby League Club, Andy Coldrick now writes match reports as his contribution to the club. His memories of Rugby League date back to 15th of April 1968 when his father took him to see Bramley play Blackpool Borough in a match his local team won fairly Read More...

Billy Thompson

Also one of the sport’s great characters, from the late 1960s to the early 1980s the inimitable Billy Thompson was amongst the world’s leading Rugby League referees. Although never playing the game himself, Billy has a strong Rugby League family heritage. His uncle played for Read More...

Carl Gibson

Unusually, for a professional player Carl Gibson’s interest in rugby league began relatively late in life. He did not play the game until he moved to Batley High School and joined the rugby league team at the age of 11. The school changed to Rugby union a couple of years later andCarl was Read More...

Cora Haley and Alan Bradford

Cora Haley first became involved in Amateur Rugby League when she married into the Haley family. Ronnie, her husband, was Chairman of Overthorpe Rangers and five other members of his family either played for the Club or were involved in some other way. In 1949 Cora took on the position of Club Read More...

Frank Wagstaff

Born in 1916, Frank Wagstaff first played Rugby League when he filled in for Kippax, his local amateur side, who were a player short for a match in 1934. After a couple of seasons in the amateur game, he answered an advertisement, which appeared in the Yorkshire Evening Post, for players to Read More...

Geoff Gunney

Few players in any sport can rival the remarkable commitment Geoff Gunney showed to Hunslet Rugby League Club. Like numerous other future Hunslet players Geoff grew up close to the Parkside ground and was regular supporter of the club during his childhood. He attended Dewsbury road school and Read More...

Geoff Wright

Geoff Wright’s association with rugby league began at the age of twelve when his school master, who was short of players, asked him to take part in a game against a local school. After the match a fellow team mate, who was a keen fan at Thrum Hall, said that if he was going to play rugby Read More...

Ikram Butt

Ikram Butt’s association with Rugby League has taken him on a remarkable and inspirational journey. Ikram grew up in the Hyde Park area of Leeds and his first memories of the sport revolve around playing in the streets and the playground of his local school, Royal Park. He and his older Read More...

Joe Warham

A loyal servant to the Leeds Club, Joe Warham has been involved in Rugby League for well over 60 years trying his hand at almost everything the game has to offer.Born in Warrington in 1920, he began his career as a winger playing for Oldham and Swinton before moving into coaching with a brief Read More...

John Beaumont

John Beaumont has enjoyed a remarkably strong affinity with Huddersfield Rugby League Club since his early childhood. He grew up close to the famous old Fartown stadium and both his parents were members of the club. As a boy he also spent many hours helping out the then grounds man Earnest Read More...

John Henderson

Born in Maryport in 1929, second row or prop forward John Henderson fulfilled his boyhood ambition by joining local club Workington in 1950, where he spent nearly 5 successful years. Coached by the legendry Gus Risman, during this period Workington won the Championship in 1950/51 and the Read More...

Keith Burhouse

A lifelong Huddersfield supporter, Keith Burhouse first remembers watching the club as a boy during the 1950s. This was a period of great success at Fartown as, along with leading British players like Dave Valentine, Mick Sullivan and Billy Banks, legendry Australians, Deverey, Cooper and Read More...

Ken Dean

In the 1950s Ken Dean was one half of a partnership that became synonymous with Halifax Rugby League club. Alongside scrum half Stan Kielty, he played stand off behind the redoubtable Halifax forward pack as the club came close to winning major honours in perhaps the most competitive era in the Read More...

Ken Senior

During a career that spanned the 1960s and 1970s, Ken Senior amassed a still-unbeaten record number of appearances for a Huddersfield back. After graduating through the local schoolboy and junior system, Ken’s potential was spotted whilst playing in open age Rugby League for Huddersfield Read More...

Len Haley

Len Haley began his Rugby League career playing as an amateur in the Dewsbury area just after the end of the Second World War. In 1947 he reached the Dewsbury Reporter cup final whilst captaining the works team of his employers, Wormolds and Walker Ltd. However, following his call up for Read More...

Linda and John Kitson

Both John and Linda Kitson have links with Halifax Rugby League club that stretch back to their childhoods. Linda vividly remembers feeling a sense of excitement on hearing crowds of people walk past her childhood home when matches at nearby Thrum Hall had ended. She soon became aware of the Read More...

Mick Sullivan

Born January 12th 1934 in Leeds, Mick Sullivan grew up during the Second World War. Although living in Pudsey he began playing Rugby League for the Dewsbury based Shaw Cross Boys Club. After a promising junior career he signed to become a professional with Huddersfield at the age of 18.Mick Read More...

Morris and Harry Child

Dewsbury fans since the 1920s, the Child brothers have seen most of what there is to see in Rugby League: the 1954 Challenge Cup final at Odsal with its record 102,000 spectators, Billy 'Plonk' Rhodes and the last ever field goal, all 18 stone of Frank Whitcombe and the Maori with a famous Uncle Read More...

Neil Shuttleworth

Neil has been involved with Rugby League for almost his entire life. He first fell in love with the game as he watched his local team ‘Fartown’ beat Swinton as a young boy. Since then, he has witnessed the many highs and lows of the Huddersfield Rugby League Club. As a child, Neil Read More...

Phil Crabtree

It was through the arrival of Bradford Northern’s former Welsh Rugby Union international Willie Davies to teach at Bingley Grammar School that Phil Crabtree first developed a strong interest in Rugby League. Phil was a pupil at the school and he became a committed supporter of the club as Read More...

Roger Ingham

An avid fan of rugby league, Roger Ingham says of himself that he owes his very existence to the game.  When his Dad went to London in 1937 to watch Keighley at Wembley he first met Roger’s Mother, who was also from Skipton and there to see the coronation decorations. So it could be Read More...

Ronnie Wolfendon

Ronnie Wolfenden first became interested in rugby league at the age of nine. He remembers, a year later, listening to the Challenge Cup final as his local club Halifax beat York at Wembley in 1931. Whilst in his teens Ronnie began to play amateur Rugby League for Luddendon Foot. But the start of Read More...

Sam Morton

Sam Morton began his involvement in Rugby League 57 years ago when he first started playing for his school, aged ten years old. Then, whilst still in his teens, Sam joined the newly formed, but short lived, West town Boys club which became part of Dewsbury Celtic in 1958. This saw Sam begin a Read More...

Sid Rookes

Sid Rookes enjoyed a successful schoolboy Rugby League career during the 1930s, whilst a pupil at Hunslet National School. He gained representative honours with Hunslet and Yorkshire Schools and was also a regular spectator at Parkside, where he stood at the famous ‘Mother Benson’s Read More...

Stanley Pickles

Born in 1911, Stanley Pickles first remembers going to a match at Headingley in 1915 when he was carried through the turnstile on his father’s shoulders. By the start of the 1920s he was watching Leeds regularly and attended most of the major matches in which the club was involved over the Read More...

The Huddersfield Giants Study Centre BME Project Interviews

The Huddersfield Giants Study Centre is part of the Playing for Success (PfS) national learning programme which is based at sports grounds around the country. The scheme makes a direct contribution to the Government's Children's Plan (December 2007) and is aimed mainly at 10-14 year olds who are Read More...