Centenary marks a new chapter for club

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A LIVERSEDGE Football Club stalwart is asking for help to write a book about the club during its centenary year.

Bob Gawthorpe has been involved with the club since signing as a player over 40 years ago, going from player-coach to manager.

He then joined the club’s committee and is now club president, overseeing 100 years of history at the Clayborn-based club, just off Quaker Lane.

The former Batley High School teacher is turning his vast experience into a comprehensive chronological history of the club, but he is looking for members of the public to lend a hand.

“I’m in the initial stages of writing the book and we have hundreds of photographs of players all through the years,” he said.

“We are desperately trying to find out the names of the players.

“I can remember a lot of them from the years I played, but we’re struggling with the names of the earlier players.”

Bob has been lucky enough to secure help in turning his hand-written notes, meticulously collected from hours of research, into a typed manuscript that can be read by football lovers across the Spen Valley.

Bob is also immensely proud of the club’s development from a small team, to one with modern day facilities at ‘our own little Wembley in north Kirklees’.

Liversedge FC was founded in 1910 following the demise of Liversedge Rugby Club, an early member of what would eventually became the Rugby League.

The football club became one of the most successful teams in the Bradford League during its early days.

Over time, the club has recorded some memorable results over the years, with six instances of a player scoring six goals in a match.

John Hartley first achieved the feat in 1947, Jack Crossland in 1953, Mick Ferrier in 1969 and more recently Danny Toronczak against Harrogate Town in October 1999.

The club’s biggest recorded win was during a home match against Burley Trojans in April 1958, where they won 16-0.

A decade previously, the 1948 team were also involved in a 17 goal thriller away at Birstall Rovers, with the Liversedge team edging out their rivals nine-to-eight.

In November 2004, the team narrowly missed out on a place in the FA Cup first round but the club has also benefited from a £200k investment in its facilities in recent years

Bob said: “Through the years we’ve won over 30 trophies, but most people don’t necessarily know where we are.

“ It’s been tough and there’s been good and bad times, but the dedication of the people here makes it worthwhile.

“Those involved with the club give up their time for free because they love the game.”

l Anyone who can help with Bob’s research can contact him on 07708 244293