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1910 - 1925 - Hartlepool Red Rose

Red Rose, proved the most successful “Junior” club  in the years running up the Great War prominent in both the Town and County Cup competitions. Emerging in 1910 they appear to have recruited a number of players from the then declining Rangers club, which had disapeared by 1912.

By 1914, they had carried all before them in both League & County Cups and were anticipating having a crack at playing in the Senior Cup. At the same time one of their 1910 team, Joseph Walter  Guerin, then playing for Hunslett was touring in Australia & New Zealand with the Northern Rugby Union team. The War stopped their ambitions as a Senior Club and Secretary Frank Hodgson and many of the players who had not been called up joined with Hartlepool Old Boys for the Wartime period.

Post War they were soon into a familiar stride with the restart of Rugby in the town they were a  “Senior” club, and left Old Boys to restart in 1918.  Two Red Rose players A.Wikinson and E.Dixon were included in the series of County matches against Northumberland in 1919. The Rose appears to have ceased playing for a while in the early part of 1920. They were "resuscitated" in Nov 1920 when they were allowed to join the Pyman League in place of Hartlepool Harlequins, who had been expelled from the League for not playing 2 matches, and they went on to win the Pyman Cup and League in 1922/23. A guide to their strength at the time is that Red Rose played through 1922/23 and were undefeated in their League matches and one of their few defeats was in the Junior Cup Final that season when they lost to Throston Wanderers on the Friarage Field They then went on to win the Durham County Junior Cup in 1923/1924, when they beat Heortensians 14 – 5 in the Final held on West’s’ Clarence Road ground.

Internal disputes saw the decline and disappearance of Red Rose in 1925, an attempt was made in August 1925 to restart the Club, but the initiative failed.

Like several the pre-WW1 sides, the Red Rose name is a revival, there was a Hartlepool Red Rose Club playing from the mid-1890s and they won the Hartlepools Junior Cup in the 1902/03 season. The name then disappears from the records, and we see the rise of Hartlepool Rangers.

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