Winning the Sykes Cup for the third time in four summers in 2003.
George Senior - the first homegrown Kirkburton player to sign on as the club's professional (1937).
In 1960 a defunct Huddersfield Corporation trolleybus was used as a pavilion after a fire at the ground.
Hills and Hedges
Kirkburton's hilly ground, on Riley Lane, is surrounded on one side by luxury houses and bungalows, built in the 1960s and 1970s.
Most have grown tall hedges or covered their rear windows with iron covers or netting to save a large glazier's bill in the event of a middle-order batsman swinging to leg. (Some of the bungalows also boast verandas - perfect for cricket-loving residents).
On other sides, it is farmers' fields and greenery that border onto the turf. The village church looks on, as does Emley Mast in the far distance.
The playing surface at Riley Lane is undulating in certain regions (it falls away slightly at the far end from the pavilion).
In places too, the field is slightly raised. The boundary's edge is littered with benches, bins, and animals (look out for cats and dogs).
A club member says: 'It's always been a good batting wicket here - a bowler's deathbed in many ways.'
There is also an artificial wicket, just to the left as you look out from the pavilion. Club spokesmen describe Riley Park as an 'elevated site' and 'a superb piece of land in a delightful setting', with a 'commanding position above the village'.
'Enterprise' of Members
A pavilion was built in 1920 and a tea room purchased in 1932 (soon after, a Ladies Committee was formed).
In 1951 one observer looked on admiringly at the club; he talked about the 'enterprise and sacrifice' of members, the 'happy manner' of Kirkburton cricketers, the 'charming' and 'entertaining' way they played the game, and the excellent wicket ('one of the finest…in the league').
Exactly 100 years on from the founding of the club, the original pavilion burnt down.
The disaster occurred in April 1960 - the fire destroyed the dressing rooms and much equipment. For a short space of time, the club used an ex-Huddersfield Corporation bus as their pavilion.
A new pavilion arrived in 1962 - the one that still stands today. It is a converted bungalow, with a garage next door. It took two years to build, and was then extended only two years after it was opened.
By 1969 the powers-that-be at Riley Lane were pretty satisfied; in the Huddersfield League handbook, they described the new structure as 'attractive' and 'well built', and their ground as a 'modern and pleasing home for village cricket'.
They went on: 'Enjoy a pleasant afternoon at our picturesque ground and a pleasant evening in the comfort of our modern clubhouse'.
Today, the building incorporates kitchen, bar area and lounge plus a small cricket library, which members and visiting spectators are free to borrow from.
Adorning one of the inside walls is a superb watercolour painting of Riley Park - the work of Jean Sutcliffe.
Aussie in Town
The scorebox, built in the early-1970s and almost a 180-degree walk from the pavilion, is an interesting feature.
A warning notice on its frontage says: SCORERS ONLY PLEASE (there's also a lock and padlock to scare off intruders).
There is a cute set of steps up to the top floor and there are five small advertising boards affixed to the bottom.
And three bits of trivia: (1) Steve Waugh visited Kirkburton CC in July 1995 - and a photo in the pavilion commemorates this fact; (2) Riley Park has witnessed its fair share of women's cricket; and (3) In 2002 a full tea cost £2, a sandwich £1.20, and it was 40p for a mug of tea, a cup of coffee, or a slice of cake. Great value.
And when Kirkburton won the Sykes Cup at Elland in 2003, it appeared that the whole of the village was there. The travelling support was exceptional, and obviously spurred the team on to victory.
Founding of Club
The club was founded at a meeting on 25 February 1860 at the Rose and Crown Inn by
members of the Carlton Working Men's Club with Charles Heptonstall in the chair.
In fact, cricket club members had to be members of the Carlton too.
Sam Rhodes was elected president, with William Stockdale as vice-president and George
Watkinson as secretary.
The first playing area was a piece of land at Turnshaws, now part of Oaklands Park. The
first reported game was against a Hepworth XI.
By 1863 the club was playing matches as Kirkburton and in 1867 they played a fixture
Games were also arranged against other clubs: Beaumonts Club of Kirkheaton, Netherton,
Shepley, Skelmanthorpe, Wortley, Almondbury, Highburton, Thurstonland and Dalton.
2nd XI games were also played, which indicates a high level of enthusiasm.
The club moved to current venue Riley Lane in 1878, opening with a game against
Hepworth on 20 April. Ground improvement work began that same year.
Kirkburton became one of the founder members of the Huddersfield & District Alliance in
1893, winning the competition in 1910.
They joined the prestigious Huddersfield & District League in 1911 – and compete in this
competition still today.
In 1932, a tea room was purchased and this led to the formation of the club's first ladies
The 1st XI claimed the Huddersfield and District League Section ‘B’ championship in 1933. The side was unbeaten throughout the league season and, against Almondbury, created a
new record for time-limit cricket: 355-9.
Approach of War
As war approached, the club engaged in payments for players.
In 1938 the club's own player, George Senior, signed as professional for the first time.
Another of the club's stars, Fred Haigh, signed as pro the following summer, 1939.
1944 witnessed a unique BBC radio commentary on the club’s Sykes Cup semi-final tie
against Broad Oak, played at Paddock.
There was sadness in 1960 when the club’s entire dressing-room block, along with all
tackle and essential equipment, was completely destroyed by fire on 5 April.
Great efforts were made by the league president, Herbert Robinson, to rally support from
many quarters – and this enabled the club to start the season on schedule.
A defunct Huddersfield Corporation trolleybus had to be used as temporary
accommodation until the new building was opened.
The club’s new pavilion was unveiled by Mr Herbert Robinson on 1 June 1962 – a great
Sykes Cup Success
In 1964 the 1st XI scooped the Sykes Cup. Housing development on the eastern side of
ground also began.
Although there were the inevitable problems of ‘balls through windows’, a number of new
residents became club members, including some who went on to serve on the committee.
Around 1970 a women's cricket section was established. The (men’s) 1st XI claimed the
Huddersfield and District League Section ‘B’ championship in the same year.
In 1972 the pavilion was extended to incorporate the Stanley Kinder Lounge. The club’s
1978 brochure observed, following this development:
‘Originally consisting of a bar, changing and toilet facilities, the pavilion now proudly offers
year-round, every evening bar openings, teas on match days (and food on many other social
occasions) and a comfortable lounge for those who prefer more the atmosphere of a pub.
‘It is a popular social centre, not only for people from the village but from further afield. It
has an attraction for families, since children are welcomed - and catered for - and as such has
every opportunity for the closest links with the village community.’
The 1st XI also bagged the Huddersfield League championship in 1972.
David Barraclough and Geoff Anderson had their loyalty to the club rewarded in 1982 as a
benefit match was staged for each of them.
In 1984 the Zimbabwe Under-20 touring side played a fixture at Riley Lane.
Nine years later, in 1993, grant aid of £3,750 was received from the Foundation for Sport
and the Arts to help improve facilities at Riley Lane.
Danny Waugh, the younger brother of Test legends Steve and Mark, had a spell as
Kirkburton overseas player the year after in 1994.
And former England Test player Phil Defreitas signed up for a short stint at Riley Lane in
The new millennium heralded an array of Sykes Cup final victories and championship titles – and the future looks bright for the club from Riley Lane.