Travelog

Littletown

Wednesday 19th May 2021 18.30
Yorkshire Amateur League Supreme Division
Littletown 2 Leeds City 2 HT: 2-1 Att: c20

from Beck Lane

Littletown is an area of Heckmondwike, which has won the most Yorkshire sounding place name 10 years running. Heckmondike sits in the middle of the square formed by the giants Bradford, Leeds, Wakefield and Huddersfield, within the big urban sprawl that is West Yorkshire. Other classic über Yorkshire places bleed into the area such as Batley, Dewsbury, Cleckheaton and Halifax.

Their ground at Beck Lane goes all the way back to the 19th century, with Heckmondwike Rugby Club using it for three seasons during the 1890s. Huddersfield Town used it as a training base from 1933 for their reserve and youth sides. It also lays claim to the longest penatly shoot out ever, in 2001. Their game against Storthes Hall was stopped at 17-17 due to bad light.

Littletown play in the Yorkshire Amateur League, which calls its first division Supreme. I think this calls for a reset, in all football, back to meaningful league naming of 1,2,3,4…

Dave drove us there and we were cutting it a bit fine with the time. The ETA on Googlemaps vacillated between 18.33 and 18.38 against an 18.30 kick off. Somehow, on the minor roads off the M62, Dave managed to pull back the time, with uncanny precision, so that just as we entered the top of the ground and could see the pitch the ref blew his whistle – it was as if he was waiting for us.

The ground reminds me a little of Irlam Steel, in that one surprisingly large stand dominates, and similarly both stands have no bottom as such, with the structure just sheltering the bare earth underneath rather than a terrace or flat concrete. As you go in there is a tea hut of sorts on the right, with a few friendly staff sat in garden chairs and a trestle table taking orders.

The ground is snugly enclosed by housing on one side and industry on the other, with a further bit of grass at one end and a cycle path a greenway (NCN99) at the other.

This was a league game with Littletown in fourth and visitors Leeds City in seventh. It was a close game that Littletown should really have put out of reach during the second half. They took the lead thanks to the keeper’s butterfingers quite early and after Leeds equalised retook the lead before half time. They had most of the possession and chances in the second half but couldn’t find a third. Leeds soaked up the pressure and eventually got their equaliser to ensure a Desmond scoreline.

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