Supporters' Association

Examiner Reports: July 2016

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Contents

6th
13th
20th
27th

6th

So, where do you stand after this last, tumultuous fortnight?

Considering all the resignations, sackings, and departures, which side of the fence are you standing on?

Are you a Remainer or a Leaver?

No, not that European thingy, but the Giants?

Judging by the crowd last Thursday, quite a few of you are Leavers.

But for us Remainers, boy, what an excellent night it was!

Whilst we did our bit to scramble into the top eight, Leeds decided that they did not want to be the only West Yorkshire side in the middle tier. Consequently they allowed Widnes, the side we would probably have jumped in front of, to seal a late victory, thus making the task of us leaving Leeds behind that much harder.

One one-time definite Leaver is now an undecided, so the rumour goes, and might, just might, have turned tail and become a Remainer. By the time you read this, more might be known about which club Jake Connor will be registered with in 2017.

A welcome Remainer is Liam Johnson.

It is largely unproven that Neil Shuttleworth threatened Liam with more wrestling tactics that he demonstrated on poor Liam at one of our monthly meetings. Photos of Liam in agony can be seen on our website!

There is no news yet as to whether our new coach will be a Leaver [from another club] or a Remainer [someone appointed from within the Giants].

So the final question is, for season 2017, will you be a Remainer or a Leaver?

Remember to go along to the annual Cricket and Family Fun Day this coming Sunday.

Honley Cricket Club is this year's host and their members have promised us wall-to-wall sunshine.

There is a small entry fee. However, should you wish to watch for free, then all you have to do is contact either James Brammer [01484484114, james@giantsrl.com] or Dave Calverley [07887 878 425, da.calverley@PhotoLens.co.uk] and offer your help for part of the day.

What a deal!

In addition, do you have anything you want to put on our sales table? A 1914/15 team jersey, for example? Or interesting and exciting games/activities which we could use on the day?

Our next speaker is such a top line act that we are keeping his/her name a secret so that we do not exceed Turnbridge's fire limit [Tuesday 2nd August, 7:30].

Photos of Liam can be found via www.GiantsSupporters.co.uk.

13th

Crowds flocked to Honley Cricket Club on Saturday to witness a rare Giants victory

Yes, the Giants actually won a match – albeit a cricket one!

Whilst the assembled throng baked in the sunshine, here are some extracts from the Heritage Project's book, "Huddersfield in WW1".

With the exception of the Bradford Cricket League, which became a 'wartime sanctuary' for professionals, most cricket leagues across the industrial north were suspended. In the circumstances, Huddersfield's cricket leagues were admirably resilient, surviving the temporary loss of some major clubs to sustain their competitions. In 1915 the Huddersfield Cricket League introduced a play-off system which successfully kept clubs and spectators interested to the end of the season, a gate of 4500 watching an enthralling final tie in which Lockwood (167 all out) beat Slaithwaite (163 all out) by four runs.

At Fartown in July 1916 Kirkburton were bowled out for 16 against Huddersfield. Four weeks later Huddersfield, spearheaded by England all-rounder Schofield Haigh, demolished a Lascelles Hall team comprised of 'three of their usual players, four or five lads under military age, and novices picked from spectators'.

With cricket's County Championship suspended from 1915 to 1918, Huddersfield's outstanding international cricketers, Wilfred Rhodes, George Hirst, Percy Holmes, Schofield Haigh and Alonzo Drake played as weekend league professionals and were in popular demand for a proliferation of midweek charity matches. All five played at Lascelles Hall in September 1917 when GH Hirst's XI played W Rhodes' XI for the benefit of Lepton War Hospital.

Similar matches were played at Fartown, and the local stars also travelled to play charity matches on numerous club grounds across industrial Yorkshire and Lancashire. In August 1915, Batley Cricket Club hosted a match between the a Local Tradesmen's XI and GH Hirst's XI which featured the usual array of professional cricketers, plus Huddersfield's international northern rugby union stars, Harold Wagstaff and Johnny Rogers.

The first two infantry fatalities came in the first week of March. Lance Corporal B Hanson of the 5th Dukes was in a deep dug out at Authuile, north of Albert, when a trench mortar exploded on top of it. His comrade, Corporal Hoskins, was dug out, but Hanson was 'struck by falling timber and must have been killed instantly.'

In the same week Corporal CW Crosland of the 9th Dukes was killed whilst leading a bombing party. Both were from Honley, one of the few local villages hitherto unscathed, a remarkable survival rate as their young men had signed up in droves. Indeed, Honley Cricket Club had abandoned cricket for 1916 as practically all of their 60 playing members had joined the Army or Navy.

Douglas Clark's diary records regular sporting fun at the siege parks of the ASC, where he wrestled and enjoyed games of chess, cricket and football - at least until 27 October when a bombardment destroyed their goalposts. On 16 October he delivered a talk about the 1914 British Northern Union tour of Australia.

Huddersfield's final fatalities of the Battle of the Somme were Private JH O'Brien, and Private Henry Thewlis, both killed in action on 13 November, and Corporal Charles Royle of Lindley, killed in a 'patrol encounter' in No Man's Land on 15 November. Twenty-year-old Thewlis had been, potentially, the latest in a famous Lascelles Hall family cricketing dynasty.

Photos of Liam can be found via http:/Galleries.PhotoLens.co.uk and details about HGSA at www.GiantsSupporters.co.uk.

20th

Boy and girlhood heroes.

Why do we have them? How do we choose them? Whom do we choose?

Each generation of Fartown and Giants fans will have their own.

From Harry Huth, one of 3 brothers to represent Yorkshire in the 1870s and our first England international in 1879, to today's Eorl Crabtree – with lots more, far too many to mention, in between.

To sit in the stand and stand on the terrace [I could never understand why you sat in the stand and stood elsewhere!] and watch your favourites was an exhilarating experience.

If you ever met them it was a case of an embarrassed "can I have your autograph, please" then scoot off with a feeling of elation.

Having got involved with various, behind the scenes aspects of the club, I come across my heroes with increasing regularity.

Tony Johnson I first met when the Heritage Project was being set up; I came across Derek Wroe at a funeral. Together they have instilled new life into the Players Association. [No pun intended.]

Ian Van Bellen I used to see around town and would point him out to whoever I was with. How different it is when you can walk up to him and have a conversation.

Or how about walking along a street in town and someone on the inside of a restaurant bangs on the window to attract your attention? For all of Gary Senior's on-field reputation, he is a genuinely nice guy, always ready to have a chat – even from opposite sides of a glass window!

Yet it is still somehow weird and strange to be in the presence of ex-players –even those who have been on Father and Son Scout camps with me [I'll keep quiet about Peter Cramp's camping exploits!].

So imagine what it is like to be in a room of a hundred of them – as was the case over the weekend at the Saints game!

Why am I name-dropping like this?

Not to show off but because you too could have access to all these heroes.

How?

Yes, the sting in the tail – you could volunteer to help the Supporters Association and/or the Heritage Group, be a club 'Angel', the list goes on.

To find out how, contact Dave Calverley [07887 878 425 or da.calverley@PhotoLens.co.uk].

Find your heroes via http://Galleries.PhotoLens.co.uk and details about HGSA at www.GiantsSupporters.co.uk.

27th

There are two important upcoming activities for members to take an active role in.

It is that time of year when we are asking for your votes for who will be this year's Wagstaff Trophy winner.

Yes, it has been a disastrous season, but voting is essential!

We named the trophy in memory of Harold Wagstaff.

Harold was born in Holmfirth and played for Upperthong before joining Fartown.

He was not only one of our best centres, but one of, if not the, best centre to play Rugby League. Such was his stature in the game that he was nicknamed 'The Prince Of Centres'.

[More can be read about our Team Of All Talents captain at http://www.huddersfieldrlheritage.co.uk/Archive/Written/Players/Wagstaff.html.]

It is not our 'Player of the Season' award, there are plenty trophies for that.

It is for the player whom you least like to leave the Giants. It could be an established first teamer, a new recruit, or an academy player.

Previous winners have been Scott Grix, Danny Brough [3 times], and Jermaine McGillvary.

Give 3 points for your winner, 2 for your second choice, and 1 for your third. We must receive your replies by the end of August.

The other event rapidly appearing on the horizon is our Annual General Meeting. This has been provisionally set for Tuesday 4th October, again at Turnbridge WMC.

All the committee posts will be open for election. We are especially looking for younger members to be part of the team.

Follow the links on our website [www.GiantsSupporters.co.uk] for both Wagstaff Trophy voting forms and committee nominations, or ask for a paper version at Turnbridge WMC.

We now have 3 home games in which to maximise sales of this year's raffle – held in conjunction with Luke Robinson's Testimonial. The two major prizes are a trip to Catalans next year [hopefully!] and a 2017 season ticket.

Your help in selling these will be very much appreciated, not only by HGSA and the Giants, but also by Luke.

By the way, our extra special guest will be making his/her scheduled appearance at Turnbridge WMC next Tuesday, 2nd August. 7:30 for a 7:45 start.

Reproduced by kind permission of the Huddersfield Examiner
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