Thumbs up for Hopton application

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Upper Hopton will join the Foster’s Halifax League in 2015 after being voted in by 24-7 last night.

The arrival of the current Huddersfield Central League members should bring the number of clubs up to 31.

Cullingworth will taste their first Halifax League action later this month but this season’s membership remains at 30 because Augustinians have folded.

Upper Hopton have fielded teams in the Halifax Junior League in the past and representatives of visiting clubs have clearly been happy with their facilities.

The league will be shooting off in a new direction with Upper Hopton, founded in 1904, based in Mirfield.

League officials would ideally like 36 clubs to form three divisions of 12 on a Saturday.

However, with the number of clubs declining, the net has had to be cast wider and that has not always been a popular move with some member clubs.

Upper Hopton stated their case for inclusion next year at a monthly meeting of clubs earlier this year.

A new voting system has been brought in following criticism that some clubs hadn’t given applications proper consideration in the past.

Clubs were required to fill in a voting form signed by their officials and returned to last night’s April meeting.

Only one club failed to return a correctly completed form and two executive committee members also voted.