National Conference League
Division Two
Kells 56 Castleford Panthers 22
H-T 28-12
Gate £2
Atten 150

There was a bout of “Cumbrian flu” in West Yorkshire early this morning as Cas put together a patchwork squad for the long trip to League leaders Kells. I was even asked if I had my boots with me ! Despite the earlier panic Cas put up a very decent performance and played their part in a very entertaining encounter. But in the end a powerful and energetic Kells squad took control to run out comfortable winners. Must admit I did find it strange that the match ref wanted to control everything himself without any linesmen to assist. 

Kells ARLFC are based high above Whitehaven but the pitches are a brisk 5 minute walk from the clubhouse. My reason for going was to watch a match at the 'Big Waite' an exposed coastal location high up on the cliffs overlooking the Irish Sea and in the shadows of Haig Pit Mill which dates back to the thirteenth century . But the game was played at their secondary location on the village rec which also commanded fantastic views over the Cumbrian countryside as far as the eye could see.

In hindsight it did not really matter as the Haig Colliery Pit Mill is covered in scaffolding whilst they attempt to bring it back to its former glory.
According to the locals there are only 21 roads in Kells itself. There are others but you are unable to drive on them.

This is only Kells' second season in the conference leagues and they look set to secure a second title in the coming weeks and continue through to higher leagues after a rich history of dominating the local Cumbria & Cumberleand scene on a regular basis. They were excellent hosts and the post match meal was delicious and went down a treat.

All seemed peaceful in the North Lakes as we drove past the Bassenthwaite Lake. One could only look and admire how beautiful it looked and marvel as to what mother nature has produced. It was simply stunning.

The Cas Party bus was bouncing all the way back to base. You would never have guessed that they lost as much laughter, music and singing could be heard. I shudder to think what will happen when they record their first away victory of the season.

Another superb day out in the NCL - just brilliant.


  1. Hi - great article on Kells. Rochdale Hornets play them in the cup this weekend and our fanblog will reference yours in our preview. Cheers.

    1. Hi TLCRF80mins .. very kind word , many thanks. I love going to Kells - great club and always a warm walcome and superb hospitality. Defo one of my fav stops on my RL grounds journey.

      They seem to have a conveyor belt of talent at Kells - very impressive.