Nostalgia: The Tattersfield of nightmares

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It is now a patch of wasteland on the entrance to Bentley, but 20 years ago today, Doncaster Rugby League fans were waving goodbye to their home.

On April 23, 1995, the Dons, as they were known, played their last ever fixture at the dilapidated stadium known as Tattersfield, just 2,975 people watching a 16-50 defeat to Workington.

Doncaster Aerial Pictures. New housing development adjacent to Tattersfield, Doncaster.

Doncaster Aerial Pictures. New housing development adjacent to Tattersfield, Doncaster.

Since 1953, fans had defiantly watched their struggling team who became known for all the wrong reasons.

The Dons were whipping boys throughout the 50s, 60s and 70s, regularly finishing bottom of the table - and even if they managed to avoid ending up at the very bottom of the heap, they were always there or thereabouts.

The luckless club even attracted TV cameras for a Yorkshire Television documentary, Another Bloody Sunday, filmed in 1980 and which told the tale of the club’s search for a single victory during a disastrous season. The elusive win came in the final game with a 6-3 win over Huyton at Tattersfield.

The ground was named in honour of former chairman Len Tattersfield - although younger supporters seemed to prefer the tale that because potatoes, or tatties had been grown there in a farmer’s field previously, that was how the stadium had arrived at its moniker.

Tattersfield, Bentley, the former home of Dons RLFC.

Tattersfield, Bentley, the former home of Dons RLFC.

The Dons enjoyed just one season of top-flight Rugby League, winning promotiion to the Premier for the first time in 1993-94. It proved to be the club’s downfall, going bust at the end of the season.

A new club, Doncaster Dragons, was formed from the ashes, playing at Stainforth’s Meadow Court stadium. Incarnations as The Lakers followed, with games at Doncaster Rovers’ former Belle Vue ground, before finding a permanent home at the Keepmoat Stadium alongside Doncaster Rovers.

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