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The Daddy

What happened to Carlisle RL club?

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Was watching an old league table from the 90s and I saw a club named Carlisle rugby league club. Anyone know much about them and what crowds they got? 

While some people call for a Cumbria SL team, is this not more evidence of the sport not being successful in the heartlands? 

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2 minutes ago, The Daddy said:

Was watching an old league table from the 90s and I saw a club named Carlisle rugby league club. Anyone know much about them and what crowds they got? 

While some people call for a Cumbria SL team, is this not more evidence of the sport not being successful in the heartlands? 

Carlisle is not the heartland of RL in Cumbria. The heartland of RL in Cumbria is in the west in towns like maryport, Workington, whitehaven, cleator moor and Egremont and in the south around the Furness area of barrow, Askam and Ulverston etc.

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8 minutes ago, The Daddy said:

Was watching an old league table from the 90s and I saw a club named Carlisle rugby league club. Anyone know much about them and what crowds they got? 

While some people call for a Cumbria SL team, is this not more evidence of the sport not being successful in the heartlands? 

The last Carlisle (Border Raiders) was a pretty low profile club playing at a semi-pro football ground (complete with trains behind the goals) in the 1990s. You were looking at maybe 200-300 home supporters at best. There always seemed potential there in the past but success failed to materialise. 

Edited by Scubby
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Also from what I remember watching the game as a kid in the late 80’s and early 90’s carlisle were probably  the top side in Cumbria but struggled along on crowds of around 600-700 people.

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4 minutes ago, Scubby said:

The last Carlisle (Border Raiders) was a pretty low profile club playing at a semi-pro football ground (complete with trains behind the goals) in the 1990s. You were looking at maybe 200-300 home supporters at best. There always seemed potential there in the past but success failed to materialise. 

The problem for the border raiders was there was nothing underneath in terms of amateur RL unlike the strong amateur game at the time in west Cumbria and barrow area.

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12 minutes ago, walter sobchak said:

Also from what I remember watching the game as a kid in the late 80’s and early 90’s carlisle were probably  the top side in Cumbria but struggled along on crowds of around 600-700 people.

Very true. From what I can remember they had some very useful overseas players in thst early 90s period and were very competitive. I have a red/blue Carlisle Border Raiders shirt from circa 1992. Can you believe it was actually on sale in Newcastle's Metro Centre?  

Edited by Scubby
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3 minutes ago, Scubby said:

Very true. From what I can remember they had some very useful overseas players in thst early 90s period and were very competitive. I have a red/blue Carlisle Border Raiders shirt from circa 1992. Can you believe it was actually on sale in Newcastle's Metro Centre?  

That’s unbelievable. carlisle border raiders shirts for sale in the metro centre!!! 

Yeah, I can remember Clayton friend, Brad Hepi and Hitro Okesene etc playing for them in the early 90’s. They also had George Graham and Hugh Waddell(I think) as well as Cumbrians like Barry William, Kevin Pape, Simon Knox and Gary Charlton etc. From what I can remember carlisle was always a team in the 2nd division with Whitehaven in the 3rd.

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8 minutes ago, walter sobchak said:

That’s unbelievable. carlisle border raiders shirts for sale in the metro centre!!! 

Yeah, I can remember Clayton friend, Brad Hepi and Hitro Okesene etc playing for them in the early 90’s. They also had George Graham and Hugh Waddell(I think) as well as Cumbrians like Barry William, Kevin Pape, Simon Knox and Gary Charlton etc. From what I can remember carlisle was always a team in the 2nd division with Whitehaven in the 3rd.

I have a fuzzy memory that they knocked Castleford out of the Regal Trophy or Challenge Cup in the early 1990s which was a big shock at the time.

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1 minute ago, Scubby said:

I have a fuzzy memory that they knocked Castleford out of the Regal Trophy or Challenge Cup in the early 1990s which was a big shock at the time.

I think it was at home in the silk cup(challenge cup). A cas side with the likes of nikau, kemp, Blackmore and crooks etc.

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1 hour ago, walter sobchak said:

The problem for the border raiders was there was nothing underneath in terms of amateur RL unlike the strong amateur game at the time in west Cumbria and barrow area.

Not entirely true. Initially, RL was sufficiently popular in the city/area to warrant a Carlisle ARL competition. It was pretty much downhill all the way for Carlisle RL once Carlisle United FC kicked the club out of Brunton Park. Attendances dropped immediately to about 400. Star player of the time was centre Kevin Pape, the 'Flimby Flyer'.

The 1983-84 FIM Cumbria Rugby League Annual lists the following clubs in the McEwan-Younger Carlisle ARL: Aspatria Hornets, Board Inn Pioneers, Caledonian, Friars, Horse & Farrier, Malt Shovel, Morton (formerly Royal Scot), Platform One, RAF and Wigton 'A'. All but Aspatria Hornets and Wigton 'A' were from Carlisle. Platform One and Horse & Farrier finished joint top of the table.

The same annual, for 1984-85, lists: Aspatria, Crown & Mitre, Caledonian, Friars, Dalston, Morton, Platform One and Wigton. That season the league had various KO comps: Brian Whittaker Cup, Try KO Cup and Chivers Sports League Cup, along with a sevens tournament.

The 1985-86 annual lists: Caledonian, Carlisle RLSC, Dalston, Friars Tavern, Morton Manor, Pheasant, Platform One and Wigton.

Edited by Hopping Mad
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When Cameron Bell was coach they brought several unknown overseas players here who went on to become stars and internationals.

Dean Bell, Clayton Friend, Hitro Okesene, Steve Georgeallis, Richard Henare, Brad Hepi, Tane Menihera to name but a few.

Their ex-chairman Alan Tucker wrote a great book about their short history....

http://www.scratchingshedpublishing.com/products-page/history/border-city-blues-the-story-of-carlisle-rugby-league/

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11 minutes ago, Hopping Mad said:

Not entirely true. Initially, RL was sufficiently popular in the city/area to warrant a Carlisle ARL competition. It was pretty much downhill all the way for Carlisle RL once Carlisle United FC kicked the club out of Brunton Park. Attendances dropped immediately to about 400. Star player of the time was centre Kevin Pape, the 'Flimby Flyer'.

The 1983-84 FIM Cumbria Rugby League Annual lists the following clubs in the McEwan-Younger Carlisle ARL: Aspatria Hornets, Board Inn Pioneers, Caledonian, Friars, Horse & Farrier, Malt Shovel, Morton (formerly Royal Scot), Platform One, RAF and Wigton 'A'. All but Aspatria Hornets and Wigton 'A' were from Carlisle. Platform One and Horse & Farrier finished joint top of the table.

The same annual, for 1984-85, lists: Aspatria, Crown & Mitre, Caledonian, Friars, Dalston, Morton, Platform One and Wigton.

The 1985-86 annual lists: Caledonian, Carlisle RLSC, Dalston, Friars Tavern, Morton Manor, Pheasant, Platform One and Wigton.

Kevin Pape was a good player. Especially in the lower league levels.

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2 minutes ago, walter sobchak said:

Kevin Pape was a good player. Especially in the lower league levels.

He certainly was. Carlisle had a few excellent stalwarts in their last few years. Full-back Brian Tunstall (ex-Hensingham ARL), prop Steve 'Damage' Brierley and hooker Malcolm Thomason stand out in my mind.

Flicking through my four FIM (Bruce Foster, Alan Irving & Graham Mumberson, then all Cumbrian Newspapers journalists) annuals, I note the very first Carlisle squad (1981-82) featured Steve Ferres, Mick Morgan, Nigel Stephenson, Allan Agar, Jimmy Birts, John Risman and Terry Hollingsworth. IIRC, winger Joe Bardgett scored the BBC TV Try of the Season.

Edited by Hopping Mad

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34 minutes ago, walter sobchak said:

I think it was at home in the silk cup(challenge cup). A cas side with the likes of nikau, kemp, Blackmore and crooks etc.

It was the Regal Trophy in its final season. Tane Manihera kicked the winning point. 

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3 minutes ago, Richard de la Riviere said:

It was the Regal Trophy in its final season. Tane Manihera kicked the winning point. 

Thanks. What year are we talking. 94’-95’??

What kind of cas side was it. Did they play the big names?

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1 hour ago, Scubby said:

The last Carlisle (Border Raiders) was a pretty low profile club playing at a semi-pro football ground (complete with trains behind the goals) in the 1990s.

The previous occupants weren't semi-pro. When Carlisle RL (unable to afford the rent at Brunton Park) moved to that ground, it was simply an open field used by an amateur football team. Carlisle RL rented it from the Carlisle & District Railwaymen's Sports & Athletic Club. All the infrastructure at the ground (now used by Carlisle City FC, of the North West Counties League) - three stands - was put in place by the RL club (and its supporters). The original dressing rooms, in a hut, barely had enough space for all the players to change! The showers were shared by players of both teams and the match officials. Initially, in 1987-88, before the ground was developed, Carlisle 'A' played at Gillford Park (and also at the now-demolished Penrith FC ground on Southend Road).

Edited by Hopping Mad
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CARLISLE: Willie Richardson; Gary Ruddy, Jason Thurlow, Matt Lynch, Phil Manning; Glenn Day, Mike Kavanagh; Steve Brierley, Danny Russell, Warren Rudd, Stewart Rhodes, George Graham, Tane Manihera. Subs: Derek Armstrong & Barry Williams


CASTLEFORD:Graham Steadman; Chris Smith, Jason Flowers, Adrian Flynn, Simon Middleton; Jamie Coventry, Gareth Stephens; Dean Sampson, Colin Maskill, Nathan Sykes, Lee Harland, Brendon Tuuta, Tawera Nikau. Subs: Andrew Schick & Stuart Flowers

short report: http://richarddelariviere.co.uk/?p=686

looks like Bluey Kavanagh kicked the drop goal, not Manihera.

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10 minutes ago, Hopping Mad said:

He certainly was. Carlisle had a few excellent stalwarts in their last few years. Full-back Brian Tunstall (ex-Hensingham ARL), prop Steve 'Damage' Brierley and hooker Malcolm Thomason stand out in my mind.

Flicking through my four FIM (Bruce Foster, Alan Irving & Graham Mumberson, then all Cumbrian Newspapers journalists) annuals, I note the very first Carlisle squad (1981-82) featured Steve Ferres, Mick Morgan, Nigel Stephenson, Allan Agar, Jimmy Birts, John Risman and Terry Hollingsworth. IIRC, winger Joe Bardgett scored the BBC TV Try of the Season.

This was a bit before my time but I remember the likes of Pape, hepi, Williams, Knox, Okesene, Richardson, Russell, Charlton, friend and Graham etc.

Something tells me that a carlisle hooker once broke the record of most tackles made in a game in the early 90’s. Does this ring a bell with you??

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4 minutes ago, Hopping Mad said:

The previous occupants weren't semi-pro. When Carlisle RL (unable to afford the rent at Brunton Park) moved to that ground, it was simply an open field used by an amateur football team. Carlisle RL rented it from the Carlisle & District Railwaymen's Sports & Athletics Club. All the infrastructure at the ground (now used by Carlisle City FC, of the North West Counties League) - three stands - was put in place by the RL club (and its supporters). The original dressing rooms, in a hut, barely had enough space for all the players to change! The showers were shared by players of both teams and the match officials. Initially, in 1987-88, before the ground was developed, Carlisle 'A' played at Gillford Park (and also the old Penrith football ground).

Thanks for providing that information. I just saw who it was used by now. It was a long time ago. I loved the trains creeping through mid-match. It was always a nice touch.

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Lived not far from Carlisle for a few years so they were my sort-of team from 1990-1993. Some very good games played there including in the absolutely brutal 8 team Second Division. But by that time they were at Gilford Park and seemingly well off the radar of most Carlisle sports fans for whom it was Carlisle United first and other football second and not much else third. Good times though.

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2 hours ago, Scubby said:

The last Carlisle (Border Raiders) was a pretty low profile club playing at a semi-pro football ground (complete with trains behind the goals) in the 1990s. You were looking at maybe 200-300 home supporters at best. There always seemed potential there in the past but success failed to materialise. 

Trains you could see whilst having a slash in the roofless gents loo.

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