Welcome to The Hunslet Club February News Letter! This is our new way to document everything we do and achieve. This will be published on the 4th of each month, and will have a summary of our Hunslet Club highlights. The following post will be wrapping up everything that has happened in February!
A Trip To South Leeds Stadium
We had a great time watching Hunslet RLFC V Leeds Rhinos with our senior youth club members, on Sunday the 6th of February. This is our second youth club trip in the last 3 months, with some of our regular youth club attendees and youth volunteers. It was great to see them having fun and accessing new opportunities outside of the club again. Our youth workers, Soe and Donna, accompanied them throughout the day to ensure everyone was getting involved and having a good time. Well done to our youth team for making this trip a great success and big thank you to Hunslet RLFC for our tickets.
While our senior youth members had a great time in the stands, enjoying the match and cheering from the sidelines, several of our younger rugby teams were making memories playing on the pitch!
A brilliant opportunity for these guys, playing at the South Leeds Stadium, situated at the John Charles Centre For sport. It was fantastic to see them pushing themselves to compete to the best of their ability before the main game of Leeds Rhinos V Hunslet Hawks. They did a great job, despite cold weather and it being a first time playing at a stadium for many of the young players. They are off to a amazing start so far; showing lots of potential in such early stages. There are definitely lots of bright futures ahead!
Over the course of our youth club sessions, we did a range of activities and exercises to start the conversation around mental health. Not only that, but the importance of reaching out to support resources when young people need it most.
With over 100 young people attending on junior and senior youth club nights, our staff and volunteers have worked hard to find different ways of making these topics fun and engaging.
Social Media and Cyber Safety
On our first Monday the focus was around cyber safety. Our social media accounts underwent a ‘social media blackout’. The purpose of this was to encourage, taking healthy and well needed breaks from social platforms. This is now more relevant than ever with recent academic studies suggesting that frequent use of social media can increase risk of depression, sleep deprivation, bullying, body and self-image dissatisfaction and anxiety in young adults. Which is why we thought it would be a good issue to start a discussion on, to kick-off Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week. We began with a message board, bringing together thoughts, worries and ideas around the topic. We also had a range of progressive discussions within our senior youth workshops, acknowledging the increase in these risks and how to avoid the potential negative implications via support resources.
This years focus for children’s mental health awareness week was ‘Growing Together’. To celebrate this with our 8 to 12 youth group, we had a group discussion about positive attitudes and worries about school and friend groups while decorating our own plant pots. This was a twist on our regular arts and crafts sessions. After, we planted our seeds for a range or different plants. Then, we were ready to watch them grow over the coming weeks. Other mental health awareness arts and crafts sessions included positivity box making. Here our juniors could make a box decorated with positive and kind comments. They then filled them with encouraging notes, which they could give out to friends.
Our Regular Support Sessions
At THC we offer mental health support, one to one chats and youth intervention. These are all provided for free by our qualified youth workers. They are there to provide support with anything from issues at school, home or worries about the future and work. On any evening, all young people are welcome to come along and request a 1 to 1 session with a youth worker. We can then point them in the right direction to any further support they may need. We also hold a ‘Job shop’, teaching CV writing skills, job interview skills and workplace etiquette, to ensure their first steps into the world of work are reinforced by our support system, relieving anxieties and stress.
To find out about more about children’s mental health support centres in Leeds, visit: MINDMATE
A Fantastic Gymnastics Showcase
On the 12th of February, we hosted our annual gymnastics showcase! Our talented gymnastics teams along with their family and friends came to make a day of showcasing all of the new skill and talent, which has proliferated over the last year. Our show started at 12:00PM when seats began to fill up.
Many of our younger teams were very excited to perform for the first time. A lot of them had also been taught by our older gymnasts, who are now volunteers. Each performance was just as impressive as the last, finishing with our older gymnastics team who performed a mixture of freestyle tricks and solo routines to a professional standard. We are proud to say that the day ran smoothly and raised money for the gymnastics department. The support and reaction from everyone who came along encourages us to keep making this department bigger and better.
We want to say a big thank you to everyone involved in this event including staff, volunteers, gymnasts, members and all family, friends and carers who showed their support.
A Visit From Former Chairman, Cliff!
On the 3rd of February, it was great to have former Hunslet Club Chairman, Cliff, pay us a visit! Now Honorary Vice President, our current chairman, Andrew, presented him with an engraved decanter to thank him for his service. Without the support and direction of people like Andrew and Cliff, we wouldn’t be able to flourish as we do today, and offer fantastic opportunities to young people in Leeds.
The spirit, morals and values of The Hunslet Club will continue to be passed down for many years to come, as they have been for the last 82 years!
February Half-Term Activity Camp!
February half-term activity camp was a huge success! As attendee numbers continue to grow with each school holiday, newcomers are always welcomed with open arms by our staff and regular activity campers. It’s great to see a wide range of friend groups, personalities and backgrounds all mix together during games and team work activities. We can guarantee that every child who attends will always leave having tried something new, as well as having made a new friend.
Despite the bad weather in the week between the 21st and the 25th, we definitely made the most of every dry spell with outdoors games on the courts, although they were few and far between. Luckily, we were able to make use of our wide range of indoor facilities, including; the sports hall, IT room, games room, arts and crafts stations, dance studios and main area.
Our next activity camp will be during the Easter holiday from the 4th to the 14th of April – make sure you like us on Facebook to keep on top of all club events and track live updates. All tickets for each activity camp can now be purchased online, within a month of the event.
Team Feature: Hunslet Club Under 11s In The Cup Final!
Five years ago this side began their journey when they started to represent The Hunslet Club in 2017. Since then, the team have progressed rapidly with the support of THC, local coaches and volunteers. This season, the Hunslet Under 11’s football team have completed a fantastic achievement in reaching the Leeds and District Cup Final.
Here are a few thoughts from, head coach, Lee Maguire:
‘I am immensely proud of the lads on what they have achieved by reaching the cup final. Myself and Arron Stancliffe started to coach them when they were 5/6 years old and to watch most of team stay together and develop at the rate they have makes us extremely proud. They have always been a talented group of players, but their rate of progress has even been a surprise to us. As with any group of young players, it has not been without it’s challenges and to curb their natural competitiveness has been a challenge (the parents will vouch for this!). They have certainly matured as players and people over the years, which has culminated in this brilliant cup run this year. We have had great support from The Hunslet Club with particular support provided by Craig Gilmore, Wayne Robbins and more recently Miller Davies.‘
Here is a quick overview of the progress to the final. Maguire stated that this:
‘wasn’t easy due to a tough draw all the way through.‘
In round 1, the draw saw them up against a recently formed development team, North East Leeds Tigers, securing the win with a brilliant 14 – 1 result. Following this in round 2, was an even tougher draw bringing them up against LS27 from the C leag,ue in which they took another win with a final score of 7-0. Bringing them to the quarter finals, was the win against fellow A league team, League Wigton Moor. This match provided a very tense half time with the score being 0-0. However, the second half saw them accumulate a great 4-0 result. Then, through to the quarter finals against Collingham, who provided a challenge in the first 15 minutes of the match bringing them 2-0 down. The team showed unbelievable character to keep playing their normal game, bringing them up to a 2-2 tie by half time.
Maguire stated that they then produced their ‘best 30 minutes of the season so far’ securing the win with a 5-2 final score, taking them through to the semi finals.
The semi final saw another challenging draw against another fellow A league team Garforth Villa who they had not played as yet this season. This was undoubtedly the best the team has ever played in all the years together, and one of the best grass roots performances Maguire said he had witnessed overall. From the very first minute to the last, the team played immaculately with a huge 8-0 victory, seeing them through to the final.
The Hunslet Club, their under 11s and all staff and volunteers are massively proud of their achievements and are looking forward to the final which has now been confirmed on the 20th March. Feel free to go along and show your support (10:30 Kick-Off) when they play against Pannal Ash at Whitkirk FC.
Ruby’s Dance Fundraiser!
On Saturday the 26th of February, our dance section threw a fundraiser for a brilliant youth-pom dancer; Ruby Adamson, who will be representing England in America, at this year’s cheer-leading championships.
Our doors opened at 6:00PM when dance family, friends, teams and club members began to fill up our main area and hall. The support from the crowds (of whom there were a lot more than we could have imagined) was brilliant, as the highly anticipated show began to start. For the first half, each dance group came on to perform the routines they had been studying and perfecting for the last few months. We started with our youngest teams, who were the ultimate showcase of how quickly the individuals in each group are to take to performing and gaining impressive new skills.
It was clear that every dancer who performed had dedicated the upmost of time and patience to ensuring this showcase was just as impressive as those before it. For many of our younger sections, this was also their first time performing live in front of a large crowd, on stage, although you wouldn’t have thought it!
In the half-time interval, our main hall served as a social area for our community to grab some food, socialise and take part in our raffle. On return to the tables, seats and benches, our dance coach, Cherry, spoke on stage. Discussing the importance of the evening and what they wanted to achieve before introducing the rest of the show.
In the second half, each section performed another one of their routines, set apart by a mixture of solo dances which explored styles such as hip-hop, ballet, cheer dance and contemporary.
Hunslet Club Parkside 2022 Betfred Challenge Cup 4th Round
Sunday 27th February at South Leeds Stadium
Following the loss by semi-pro neighbours Hunslet RLFC in North Wales on Saturday afternoon Hunslet Club Parkside carried the baton for south Leeds and the National Conference League into their first ever 4th Round Challenge Cup appearance 24 hours later. At the final whistle the score was 20-40 to Sheffield Eagles but the scoreline in no way reflected the heroic performance Hunslet Club Parkside put on for a 400 strong crowd.
Unable to play at their Station Moor ground the tie was played at South Leeds Stadium and in the winter sunshine it was the visitors who kicked off. Hunslet Club Parkside opened the scoring on 13 minutes when Jamie Fields landed a penalty from close to the posts but the opening try went to the Eagles with Liam Kirk scoring and in the process accidentally bringing about Parkside’s first major injury with George Clarke having to leave the field and unable to return.
The response from Hunslet Club Parkside was impressive and typified the whole performance on an afternoon when a little more luck could easily have brought about a very different conclusion. First Kieran Webster went over from close in and under the posts with Andy Hullock converting on 23’ and second, full back and Parkside’s Player of the Match Craig McShane received the ball out on the right and dummied his way over for a fine individual effort on 28’. Hullock’s conversion attempt hit a post and unfortunately bounced out but the home side were now 12-6 in front of their Championship opponents. The next two scores of the first half went to the Eagles who took a 16-12 lead into the interval.
Sheffield extended their lead in the first set of the second 40, Gudzek crossing and converting his own score but the home side responded in the best fashion on 51’ when a shift to the left involving Westwood and McShane saw Connor Squires finish well in the corner bringing the score to 16-22 and it was game on! Parkside were the next scorers with opposite wing Will Cohen going over on 76 minutes for a two point ball game at 20-22, but injuries – George Clarke broken ankle, Danny Lidbury concussion and Liam Thompson ligament damage to name but three – had taken their toll on the home side and the final five minutes of the game saw Sheffield Eagles cross for three tries through Hodgson, Jones-Bishop and Johnson against a side who had given their all and had in the process done the amateur game proud!