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Illingworth ARLFC was formed in the Spring of 1961.

The first Headquarters were at the Junction Inn, Holmfield, with home games played on a sloping farmer's field running adjacent to Whitehill Road, Illingworth, and later on The Moor, the first coach being Morris Perrett.

With the team playing in the Halifax and Huddersfield League the club moved its' base to the since closed White Swan Public House in Holmfield, ahead of joining the Pennine League.

The late 60's and early 70's were heady days for the club winning numerous cups during this period. Bolstered by this success the club acquired its' own ground at Tar Hill, levelling the pitch to make it more playable.Club members installed floodlights, and two former air raid shelters were employed as changing rooms.

The teams were now meeting at the Talbot Inn, Illingworth, though The Commercial Inn was officially club headquarters. The coach at this stage was Terry Dolly, a former professional with Oldham.

The club grew strongly and formed a second team under the Captaincy of Trevor Eastwood, and an Under 17s team for the 1973/74 season. This season proved to be the best in the club's history, the first team reaching the Yorkshire Cup Final under the coaching of Stan Gardner, and two players, Sam Illingworth and Gerry Slattery going on to full Yorkshire honours.

After finishing runners up to West Hull in the Yorkshire Cup Final several players left the club, the void being filled by up and coming second team and junior players. Two of these players went on to sign professional forms for Leeds, Brendan White, and the highly respected Brendan Finn.

Brian Smith, formally with Bradford Northern, became coach and the club began a steady period of consolidation. Gerry Slattery became coach and his influence helped win a divisional title in the early 80's. The club bought the old Crossley's Social club at Mason Green in 1982, and with Paul Sutcliffe was installed as coach in 1984 the first team was victorious in the J & J Fee Cup Final.

They returned to the Fee Cup Final in 1989, but were beaten by Keighley Albion, however the following season the second team won the Shipley Trophy despite being underdogs against West Bowling.

In 1995/96 the Under 18's won the West Riding League and Cup double, as well as the Halifax Cup. Four players from this side joined the professional ranks, Ben Thompson, Gary Hilton, Jamie Fielden and his brother Stuart.

Despite a heavy defeat the club, by this time under the coaching of Dave Roberts progressed to face professionals Rochdale Hornets in the Rugby League Challenge Cup.

Recent years saw club's on field fortunes dip somewhat, but still a number of players have gone on to make a mark in the professional game. In 2012 the Williams brothers Daley and Darren are both on the Batley books, while Joe Wardle has established himself as a Super League player at Huddersfield.

However 2012/13, under the coaching of Johny Taylor and Andy Greenway the trend was reversed with an emphatic Pennine League Division Two Championship winning season and capture of the Andrew Bennett Memorial Trophy.

Progress continued the following season with a double title winning season, the second team clinching the Pennine League Division Seven title, while the first team grabbed Championship Division One honours following a last match 6-4 victory over title rivals Brighouse Rangers. The team also reached the Joseph Fee Memorial Trophy Final for the first time in eight years, going down to a four point defeat to Rangers. A fine season was capped with a 24-12 victory over Halifax Irish in the Halifax Championship.


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