Preston Grasshoppers RFC
Lightfoot Green Lane
Preston PR4 0AP
t 01772 863546
Distance from Northwich: 49 miles
Playing record in National Two North: P 25, W4, D3, L18, Pts29 (relegated)
Did you know?
Preston Grasshoppers have been one of the foremost clubs in the north, and are among the oldest in English rugby union after being formed in 1869.
Last season marked their 150th anniversary.
However, I wonder if they were a little premature.
Due to the growing popularity of Association Football in the area, the club ceased playing in December 1885 until March 1901 when they reformed.
The name, Grasshoppers, was suggested by members of the club who had attended Cheltenham College, where an annual match took place between the ‘Fireflies’ and the ‘Grasshoppers’.
After spending more than a decade in National Two North, ‘The Hoppers’ were relegated to the North Premier at the end of the 2016-17 campaign.
However, they emerged as champions, securing with it promotion, a mere 12 months later.
A return to Level Four of the English Clubs Championship proved short-lived though, and they were demoted after the game's governing body applied a 'best playing record formula' to decide the outcome of the truncated 2019-20 campaign because of the global coronavirus pandemic.
No doubt it will be their ambition to bounce back again at the first attempt.
Grasshoppers visited Moss Farm 37 years ago, and took on Mid-Cheshire College.
The hosts fancied their chances of a prestige victory when they led 11-3 at the turnaround.
A penalty by Hudson, followed by tries from Pendleton and Wilde, established an early advantage.
Walkden added an unconverted try in the second half before Grasshoppers assumed control and turned the tables.
However, they needed a last-gasp penalty to draw level.
It is important to confess this was Grasshoppers' second XV that visited; back then Blacks were classified as a junior club.