The Cricket History of Calderdale and Kirklees

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Carr House Lane, Shelf, Halifax HX3 7RB   View Map

Altitude: 258 Metres/846 Feet

Halifax League

Volunteer Contacts:

Jack Wilson & Andy Dimbleby

Club Website

  Club Image

Founded: c.1890s
Nearest Landmark: Shoulder of Mutton public house
Nearest Railway Station: Halifax
By Bus: 508/509/570/571/681 from Halifax and Bradford
Nearest Other Club: Northowram Hedge Top CC


Timeline (40kb PDF)

Early Years (718kb PDF)
Later Years (1.8mb PDF)

Club Centenary Brochure 1903-2003 (2.3mb PDF)

Halifax Courier Club History (2006) (115kb PDF)

History of Ground and Club - Extract from Home Soil (11kb PDF)

Concise History of Club (8kb PDF)

1896 Parish Cup Ground Report (70kb PDF)

1897 Parish Cup Winners (164kb PDF)

1903 Bradford League Winners (337kb PDF)

1939 Waddilove Cup Winners (48kb PDF)

1942 Scorebook v Sowerby Bridge and Hebden Bridge (235kb PDF)

1943 Scorebook v Manningham Mills (287kb PDF)

1944 Scorebook v Girlington (106kb PDF)

1946 v Bramley Moriah & Girlington Methodists (290kb PDF)

1947 Scorebook v Woodlands (176kb PDF)

1949 Scorebook v Jer Lane & Northowram (174kb PDF)

1950 Len Hutton Visit & Scorebook v Northowram Hedge Top (143kb PDF)

1958/9 Scorebook v Wibsey Congs, Jer Lane & Dudley Hill (631kb PDF)

1964 Scorebook v Thornbury, Bolton Villas & NEGB (272kb PDF)

1971 Scorebook v Buttershaw St.Paul's, Fields & Wyke (371kb PDF)

1972 Match Reports, League Tables & Team Photos (590kb PDF)

1972/3 Bradford Central League Presentation Nights (117kb PDF)

1974 Scorebook v Lightcliffe, Jer Lane & Thornton (376kb PDF)

1976 Shelf v Tong & Waddilove Cup Winners (126kb PDF)

1989 Membership Card & Team Photos (181kb PDF)

1989 Great Match v Sandy Lane by David Febrero (43kb PDF)

1993 Income & Expenditure (117kb PDF)

2000/1 v Sandy Lane & Norwood Green (310kb PDF)

2005 Outdoor Committee Meeting (90kb PDF)

2005 Heritage Exhibition Launch Event (402kb PDF)

2006 Charity Match (332kb PDF)

2006 Season Review by David Febrero (15kb PDF)

2006 Player of the Season by David Febrero (13kb PDF)
2007 Shelf v Queensbury by David Febrero (14kb PDF)

Accident Book - undated (49kb PDF)

Heritage Display in Club Pavilion (240kb PDF)

Under-17s Notice - undated (50kb PDF)

LEAGUES: Bradford Central League, Halifax League (web link)


Who's Who (894kb PDF)

Malcolm Butterfield   Photo (88kb PDF)

Chris Coates   Profile by David Febrero (18kb PDF)

Joe Craig   Photo (51kb PDF)

Andy Dimbleby   Profile by David Febrero (15kb PDF)

Mrs Dimbleby   Profile by David Febrero (15kb PDF)

Neil Firth

Newton Holmes   Profile by David Febrero (14kb PDF)

Neil Kennedy   Profile by David Febrero (17kb PDF)

Johnny Marshall   Profile by David Febrero (21kb PDF)

L.Newton   Honorary Treasurer

Alex O'Keefe   Profile by David Febrero (15kb PDF)

Mick Priestley   Marathon Man by David Febrero (19kb PDF)

Dave Rawnsley   Profile by David Febrero (22kb PDF)

R.Sandford   Honorary Secretary

Jason Slater   Photo (53kb PDF)

Craig Smith   Photo (57kb PDF)

Malcolm Walker   Photo (44kb PDF)

Jack Wilson   Profile by David Febrero (17kb PDF)

Neil Firth & Players - 1962 (811kb PDF)

Shelf Women's Committee by David Febrero (34kb PDF)

Team Photos

1950s (136kb PDF)

1960s (127kb PDF)

1970s (268kb PDF)

1980s (70kb PDF)

History of Ground

Story of Carr House Lane (730kb PDF)

Old Pavilion (101kb PDF)

2002 Demolition of Old Pavilion (84kb PDF)

2006 (Aug) Carr House Lane (1.1mb PDF)

2007 (11 Aug) Shelf v Clayton (1.4mb)

3D Map & Aerial Photograph (250kb PDF)

Line Drawing by Sue Brant

Painting of Ground (53kb PDF)

Ground Today


General Views

On the Boundary


Players (216kb PDF)

Pub Car Park



Spectators (340kb PDF)
Tea Room (72kb PDF)

Wicket & Square (174kb PDF)

Oral History

Local Context

Profile of Shelf (38kb PDF)

Francis Frith Old Photographs (web link)

Shelf Junior & Infant School (web link)

Shelf Parish Church (web link)

Shelf United AFC (web link)

Former Cricket Clubs in Local Area (web link)

Shelf Parish Wood CC
Shelf Wesleyans CC

Further Reading

Bradford Telegraph & Argus

Halifax Courier (Shelf News)

Club Archives

West Yorkshire Archive Collection (Stored at Halifax Library)


With grateful thanks to Joe Craig, Andy Dimbleby and Jack Wilson (SCC) and David Febrero (University of Huddersfield).

If you have any information about this club or any others in this area that could be of use please feel free to contact us via

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Select Images to View Below:

The Ground
  Archive Images


Greatest Moment

Winning the Halifax Parish Cup in 1897.

Local Hero

S.Swithenbank – hit a record 174 against Queensbury in the Bradford League in 1904.

Bizarre Fact

Shelf won the Bradford League in the competition’s first season – 1903.

Good Relationships

Once upon a time, Shelf's ground was one of three cricket venues in the immediate environs of Witchfield Hill and Carr House Road.

A chapel team used to play at a ground just off Shelf Moor Road, adjacent to The Paddock and Ayreville Drive, and some maps also show a 'Parish Wood Cricket Ground' on Riding Hill (the continuation of Manorley Lane), only yards inside the eastern boundary of the Calderdale region.

Today, there is only the Shelf CC ground left. On one side it is surrounded by new housing, but as club official Malcolm Walker explains, there's no problem: 'We get on fine with the local residents. Of course there's the odd complaint, but the cricket has been here for 100 years and the houses for 30 years, so we've got to get on.'

The place lies in the 'grey zone' where Halifax and Bradford telephone numbers almost merge, and where 'HX' and 'BD' postcodes sit side by side. Officially, Shelf is part of Calderdale - and many people from Shelf would certainly describe themselves as 'Halifax folk' - but, nevertheless, Shelf CC are members of the Bradford Central Cricket League, and have been since the formation of the club in 1903.

And they have an intense rivalry with two nearby clubs in the same league: Jer Lane (to the north) and Buttershaw St. Paul's (to the north-west).

Development Work

Very recently, the Shelf ground has been the scene of unprecedented development work. Out went the old, increasingly dilapidated pavilion; and in have come two semi-permanent steel portakabins. Walker, a member of the club committee, explains: 'We had to do it - the old building had been falling down for a number of years. It was definitely on its last legs.'

He goes on to describe a common problem: 'For a small club like ours, we just didn't have the time or the expertise to put together a full business plan and then apply for grants and funding. It was too much work. We've got enough on our plate just existing, and trying all the time to attract new members.

So we decided on the two-portakabin idea as a halfway house. They'll do for changing rooms and tea room. They're as permanent as they need to be. We've still had to raise a lot of cash to afford the portakabins, but at least it was manageable.'

Excellent Wicket

This major recent upheaval notwithstanding, locals agree that nothing much has changed at Shelf CC since 1903. However, Walker fills the first-time visitor in: 'Fifty years ago, the pavilion was on the top side of the ground - where the houses are now. But for some reason, it was moved to the bottom side, near the main entrance and car park. I think back then it was viewed as a temporary measure, but it stood the test of time until 2002, by which time it definitely had outlived its usefulness.'

The playing area at Shelf slopes slightly down towards the main road. There is a wheeled sightscreen at the pavilion end, a red corrugated hut situated nearby, and two white-coloured maintenance buildings at the top end, just in front of the new modern houses that overlook the venue.

And the wicket is excellent. Walker declares: 'It's superb - just ask the bowlers! Two of our players take care of the wicket, and they do a great job. If you bat first, you've really got to aim for 200 or 220. But saying that, on the last afternoon of the 2002 season, 618 runs were scored at the ground.'

In the vicinity of the venue are a number of interesting buildings: Shelf Village Hall, Shelf Balti House and the Shoulder of Mutton. The pub is only a full-blooded six-hit away from the playing area - very convenient.

Shelf, the place, is famous for its primitive magic (note the local street names - Witchfield Hill and Burned Road) and of course its curious name.

Disclaimer - Designed and programmed by Lee Booth.

Heritage Lottry Fund University of Huddersfield