For over 60 years, Shaw Cross Sharks, formerly Shaw Cross Boys' Club, has been well known in Rugby League circles, and particularly for producing young players for the professional game.
More than 250 players have left the club for the professional game, beginning with the likes of Mick Sullivan and Derek Turner to Mick 'Stevo' Stephenson, David Ward and more recent names include the likes of Nick Fozzard, Lee Gilmour, Keith Mason, Pat Walker, Ash Lindsay, Ben Gledhill and Jay Pitts......just to name a few!
When the club was founded in 1947 it had only one team, and the founder secretary Douglas Hird B.E.M still holds that position!
1949 the club got its first premises costing £30 (an ex-Army Nissen hut).
The club motto "Reaching Forward" was created from the hard days when the club house had a stove in the middle and the coal was rationed in the cold winter, this is where the after match food came from in the Second World war!
Eventually we began to add extensions to our "hut", first some baths and toilets and then a further changing room.
By now the club had several youth teams and was continuing to expand.
In 1970 came the break through in the French exchange this is still running and now more than 1,700 boys from the two countries have taken part in this rugby playing exchange.
In 1977 Shaw Cross made history by taking the first BARLA squad to play in Australia and New Zealand.
In 1998 the club opened its present new premises, thanks to the National Lottery Grant and in the same year the Shaw Cross Club was named "Sports Club of the Year" by Sport England. More recently the club has won "Clubmark" award.
Its Link with South Africa has taken tours to Cape Town in 1999, 2001 and 2003 where as well as playing rugby, the Sharks visited schools in the black townships and coached the young children the game of Rugby League.
In 2004 more records were made when the club won promotion and the Championship into the National Conference Premier Division. The elite league in British Amateur Rugby League, the top league below the then named National Leagues.
Along with this the club went to on a trip to Serbia & Montenegro taking a touring party to play the Serbian sides in 2005.
In 2006 another chapter was added when the Sharks reached the semi-final of the National Cup and made it to Round 3 of the Challenge Cup where we just lost out to Doncaster Lakers who went on to face St Helens in the next round.
In 2007 the Sharks celebrated their Diamond Jubilee after 60 years.
A trip to the Czech Republic will be another milestone for Shaw Cross as they cross the borders to take on the national side - the Sharks were relegated to Division One.
The Juniors produced one of the most successful sides ever winning numerous trophies - Under 17's League & Play-Off Champions, U 14's Continuation Cup Champions & Under 12's League & Cup Champions.
In 2008 the Shaw Cross Sharks 'A' team added the John Kane Cup to the trophy cabinet as well as the Under 17's winning the Premier Division for the second year running. They also won the Yorkshire League Cup and the Under 15's retained the Continuation Cup.
Jay Pitts made his debut for the Wakefield Trinity Wildcats in Super League as well as Ben Gledhill on the fringes of the Castleford Tigers first team, Ben later moved to Wakefield where he made his debut. Many other players also signed scholarships and are playing Academy football.
The Sharks picked up the gong of 'Best Media of the Year' at the BARLA Dinner Awards in 2008.
Darren Hardaker took the Sharks U14's in 2009 to the BARLA National Cup Final as well as the Yorkshire League Premier Division Championship. Darren also picked up the gong of Kirklees Coach of the Year.
The Sharks U15's continued in 2010 by winning Back-to-back League Championships, Yorkshire Cup and Challenge Cup for an amazing Treble. The Sharks Open Age joined the Summer Rugby League Conference meaning they competed in both the Winter and Summer Leagues for the first time in the Club's History. The Sharks won the RLC Yorkshire Region Minor Premiership and made the Grand Final.
Shaw Cross Sharks ARLFC achieve Clubmark Gold, thanks to the continued efforts of many volunteers. Clubs awarded Clubmark can be proud of what they have achieved. Parents can be assured that their children belong to a safer club. Members can be sure their club is a well managed club, striving to offer the best in coaching and sports development.
Jay Pitts, Alan Smith and the rest of the U13's coaching team in 2010/11 won the League & Cup double with a dramatic last minute try at Big Fellas Stadium aka Post Office Road on Sunday 1st May 2011.