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Pitchero Club

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History

Founded: 1900
Ground: Cleator Moor Road
Club Secretary: Paul Street
Coach: Chris McKinney & Howard Hill
Rugby Secretary: Mark Adams
Youth Secretary: Vicky Turnbull
Clubhouse Tel: 01946 694941


History: The history of our club is long, proud and successful. Our presence in rugby circles being unbroken for over a century.
It wasn't until 1920, however, that the Club changed its allegiances to Rugby League and played on a ground approximately 200 yards from our current Cleator Moor Road home. Hensingham is one of the oldest rugby clubs in the country.


Through sheer hard work by a host of dedicated Committee Members and loyal followers such as George Benson, Ian & David Kirkup, Ernie Rae, David Powe, Eddie & Ronnie Proud, Danny Paisley, Ted Calvin, Lenny Lowery, Ted Copeland, and Jackie Beech our present site has been developed over the years from the humble beginning of a rundown shed to the envy of many clubs being one of the best amateur club facilities in the country.


We have always invested heavily in our youth programme and in return developed some absolute gems that have gone on to enrich the professional ranks.
The legendary Sol Roper springs to mind and followed in subsequent years by the likes of Joe Bonner, Harold Henney, Alan McCurrie, Jimmy Dalton and Vince Gribbin. Our current youth policy was pioneered in the 70s Coaches such as Lenny Lowery, Ronnie Proud & last but by no means least Jackie Beech, Jackie was named by Vince Gribbin in a player profile as the person who was most influential in his career, Gribbin who left us for Whitehaven in 1982 still retains the distinction of being the only Cumbrian ever to occupy a centre berth in a professional Gt Britain Test Team.


It's an incredible fact that in the last ten years we have earned a reputation of becoming something of a breeding ground for Super League players. No less than ten of our youth players have played in the top flight during that time - Jon Roper (Warrington) Steve McCurrie (Widnes & Warrington), Paul Davidson (Widnes, Oldham, St Helens, London Broncos, Halifax & Whitehaven), Howard Hill and Chris McKinney both (Oldham & Whitehaven) with Hill also playing for Hull K.R. Lee Prest, Craig Murdock and Stephen Holgate (Wigan), Simon Knox (Bradford Bulls) and Lee Smith (Workington Town). In addition we had Carl Hewer and graham Lewthwaite stay at home with Whitehaven. Currently we are proud to have Scott McAvoy playing professional rugby with his home town club, Haven. Simon Knox & Stephen Holgate represented there clubs in major finals, Knox playing at Wembley for Bradford in the Challenge Cup and Holgate winning a Grand Final Ring for Wigan at Old Trafford.


We have on three occasions progressed to the first round proper of the Rugby League Challenge Cup. In 1923 they met Wakefield Trinity, losing 67-13. Three years later the "Claret and Gold of Huddersfield provided the opposition, which the Fartowners duly won 39-1. A third Yorkshire side, Dewsbury were drawn in 1990-91 with the game staged at Derwent Park Workington and despite a magnificent performance we were beaten 24-7. Another Professional Club - Hull K.R. were faced in the Regal Trophy in 1994, the "Robins' recorded a 48-4 win.


Domestically as the eighties unfolded, we finished First Division Runners Up to Kells and in the following season 1982-83, with John (Spanky) McFarlane Player/Coach we just failed in our attempt to lift the Slalom Lager County Cup - going down 15 - 11 to the same opponents in a tightly contested final. This was also the year of the Marauders, Mason's Marauders to be exact, Eric Mason's 2nd Team won Div 2 Cup with young and old gracing this side such as Kenny Gallagher, Brian Sparks, John Eilbeck, Mark Harper , Jimmy Dalton & of course Eric Himself this side was a match for any second string side in the country.


1983-84 season ended in similar fashion, we finished third in the league and beaten in the Amateur Cup Final by Egremont Rangers 25 - 13.


Twelve months on and Egremont proved the villains once again, taking the league title ahead of us by a mere two points. The youth section of the club were laying a solid foundation and swept everything before them at under 13 / 17 and 19 age levels.


Three years of rebuilding then commenced, and when season 1988-89 came round we, under our new coach the popular Jackie Davidson were ready to mount a serious assault on the league title. The title was won in convincing fashion and the Amateur Cup was added for good measure with a 19 - 6 victory over Egremont.


1990-91 after Jackie left us for the pro ranks we had ex full back Vince Hyslop in charge & assisted by Lenny Lowery we finally got our hand on the Cumbria Cup, winning a hard fought final played at Craven Park Barrow against Millom 7-0 both sets of players saying that it was one of the toughest games they had played in.


1992-93 Season was also a oh so close season we finished runners up in the league to Ellenborough and losing out to Kells 2-0 in the Cumbria Cup. This was the year we travelled to London to play Hemel Hempstead in the Silk Cut Challenge Cup.


Arguably our clubs finest moment also came in 1992-93 when we got to the National Cup Final played at Knowsley Road St Helens we had players like Laverick, Hewer, Murdock, Tunstall, Todd, & Holgate at the centre of all thing good for us we put up a valiant display losing out to a superb Saddleworth Rangers Side. A Year later
Under 19s Scrum Half/Stand Off Carl Hewer was named B.A.R.L.A. Under 19 Player of the Year. At this time in the Clubs History the playing side was very strong with us having 3 open age sides, In the 93-94 season saw all our open age sides winning there respective league titles, in total 6 cups was won Div 1, Alliance 1, Alliance 1 Top 4, Alliance 2, Alliance 2 Top 4, and also the Bill Twentyman Cup a feat no club in the Cumberland league has ever done.


We reached the semi-finals of the National Cup in 1994-95 and lost out to Walney Central in the Cumbria Cup Final and to Elbra in the top four final. This was a year of near misses for our club but not one of our finest ever players, Richard Todd (Toddy) was voted BARLA Player of the Year, anyone who had the pleasure of playing with or watching Toddy play will tell you this award was richly deserved. 94-95 also saw our B team winning the John Nicholson Cup.


Hensingham was then seen as the premier breeding ground in Cumbria for the professional ranks, with more than 10 junior players joining the pro game.


Season 1999-2000 saw us back were we belong contesting finals, we lost the Cumbria Cup, Cumberland Cup and Amateur Cup all to league champions Wath Brow Hornets, But got revenge in the last final the top four play off.


The next Trophy to grace our club was the 01-02 Alliance Championship.


With Trevor Laverick as Coach the good times returned in the 02-03 Season our 1st team were unstoppable winning the league without losing a game, The Top 4, Amateur, and Cumbria Cups came in with the 2nd Team winning the Dale Cambell-Savours Cup. The side went form strength to strength under Laverick the following season winning the Cumberland Cup Amatuer Cup and League Titles.


With Trevor handing the reins over to Gordon Cottier a Hat-Trick of Amateur Cup Titles in the 04-05 Season.


Our Club has a commitment to providing the best facilities, with the best coaches providing the best coaching, producing the best Players.


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