|Full name||Fortitude Valley Football Club|
|Competition||Brisbane Rugby League|
|Premierships||24 (1909, 1911 (as Valley-Toombul), 1914, 1915, 1917, 1918, 1919, 1924, 1931, 1933, 1937, 1941, 1944, 1946, 1955, 1957, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1979, 1988 (as Seagulls-Diehards), 1989, 1990, 2017)|
|Runners-up||15 (1916, 1923, 1930, 1935, 1936, 1938, 1943, 1958, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1965, 1969, 1972, 1978)|
|Wooden spoons||2 (1975, 1995)|
The Fortitude Valley Diehards, often referred to simply as Valleys, are an Australian semi-professional rugby league football club based in the Brisbane suburb of Fortitude Valley.
Until their demise in 1995, the Fortitude Valley Diehards, were the oldest surviving rugby league team in Brisbane, Australia, being formed in, and winning their first premiership, in 1909 – also the year of the inaugural Brisbane Rugby League premiership. They have roots tracing to 1908 and the first rugby league game in the state, between North Brisbane and Toombul, who would combine with Valleys in 1911.
They were by far and away Brisbane’s most successful rugby league team and one of Australia's greatest clubs in Australian history, having won a total of 24 premierships in their 86 seasons, including seven of the first eleven premierships. With the introduction of the Brisbane Broncos into the Sydney Rugby League in 1988, Valleys formed a short-lived joint venture with the Tweed Heads Seagulls playing under the name Seagulls-Diehards, winning the 1988 premiership. The joint venture broke soon after and Valleys returned to their old name in 1989.
Financial difficulties in the early 1990s took their toll on the club, leading Valleys to a short-lived merger with the Caboolture Snakes, calling themselves Caboolture Valleys, in 1995. However the club folded at season’s end, preventing the foundation club from playing in the inaugural Queensland Cup in 1996.
In 2002, Valleys entered a partnership with another former Brisbane Rugby League team, Brothers, playing under the name Brothers-Valleys. Playing out of Perry Park, in the Brisbane suburb of Bowen Hills, approximately halfway between Fortitude Valley and Albion, the Two-Blues participated in the Mixwell Cup and Mixwell Colts Challenge, before being accepted into the Queensland Cup for Season 2004. Based at O'Callagahn Park in Zillmere, the club’s only premiership points that season were from a first round draw. At season’s end, Brothers Valleys announced a name change to Brothers Diehards, but were not accepted into the 2005 Queensland Cup, on the basis of club finance.
The Diehards still however compete in the Amateur Brisbane Second Division along with other Brisbane Clubs.
The club was readmitted to the Brisbane Rugby League in 2015.
Perhaps the greatest ever year for Valleys was their 1955 success during which the side remained undefeated under the peerless leadership of fullback Norm Pope.
As of 2021 Valleys compete in the QRL Women's Premiership, which is the strongest state-based competition in QLD. Their side features a number of representative players including Shenae Ciesiolka, Meg Ward, Ali Brigginshaw, Brianna Clark, Kody House and Lavinia Gould. They are coached by former international and Queensland representative NRL star Scott Prince.
Unlike many other rugby league teams in Australia, until it was forced upon them Valleys never had an official moniker. Although they were nicknamed the "Diehards", which came about from their reported "Diehard spirit" in tough games, until the Queensland Rugby League's rebranding process in the 1980s, which saw all BRL clubs adopt a logo framed by a stylised Q, Valleys identified themselves with a simple VFC (Valleys Football Club) monogram. With the introduction of the new logo in the 1980s, the monogram was relocated to the shield of the newly adopted Gladiator moniker, although for the next few seasons, the monogram remained on the jersey beneath the AVCO sponsorship logo.
Valleys had a very traditional playing strip, and were the simplest of the Brisbane Rugby League clubs. Their colours were royal blue, with a white collar, and a white butcher stripe (irregular hoop) vertically on each side of the shorts. Their socks were blue, although again were complemented by a white butcher stripe in the middle on occasion. The VFC monogram was white, as was the majority of sponsorship logos placed on the jersey.
Although not technically in the Fortitude Valley area, the Diehards played out of what was then known as Neumann Oval in Albion, in the same area as the Albion Park trots and Brothers Rugby Union's Crosby Park. Following the Diehards departure for Caboolture, and eventual extinction, in 1995, Queensland Cricket purchased the ground and renamed it Allan Border Field. Currently Valleys Juniors, who evolved from the BRL team in 1951, play full-time at Emerson Park, Grange, and have done so since gradually moving out of Neumann Oval in the early 1970s.
Valleys Juniors, Valleys Hawthorne and Valleys United Stars (now Easts Bulimba Stars) were the only junior clubs that belonged to Valleys.
Pre State of Origin/Bulimba Cup Albert Park
Brothers-Valleys were a rugby league team formed from a merger between the Brothers and Fortitude Valley Diehards teams in 2002. The team debuted in a pre-season match against St George-Illawarra in 2002, and for the next two seasons competed in the Brisbane A Grade Mixwell Cup and Mixwell Colts competitions, playing out of Perry Park in Mayne, Brisbane. In 2004 they moved to O'Callaghan Park in Zillmere and were accepted into the Queensland Cup, but in a year of poor performances both on and off the field they failed to win a single game and only managed a draw against the Souths Logan Magpies.
The Western Suburbs Panthers, or West Brisbane Panthers, or often simply referred to as Wests for short, are a rugby league club based in the western suburbs of Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. The club is the oldest in the QRL and despite absences from the top grade in recent years and several name changes the club continued to operate. After leaving the Queensland Cup, they participated in the Brisbane A-Grade competition from 2005 until their senior sides disbanding in 2012. In 2013, the club entered a voluntary hiatus, but was announced to be part of the revived Brisbane Rugby League.
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The Past Brothers Rugby League Football Club, or Brisbane Brothers Rugby League Football Club nicknamed the Leprechauns, or more commonly known as Brothers, or as The Brethren, was a rugby league club based in the city of Brisbane, Australia, that played in the top level of football from its foundation in 1929 until 1998. The club previously played in the Queensland Cup and the Brisbane Rugby League premiership, but no longer plays in those competitions.
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Mark Hohn is an Australian former rugby league footballer who played in the 1980s and 1990s. A front-rower, he represented Queensland in the State of Origin on nine occasions and played one Test for Australia as a reserve forward against France in mid-1994. Hohn played club football in Australia for the Fortitude Valley Diehards, Brisbane Broncos and South Queensland Crushers, and in England for Wigan and Hunslet.
Gavin Allen is an Australian former rugby league footballer who played in the 1980s and 1990s. He played club football in the Brisbane Rugby League premiership for Fortitude Valley and in the NSWRL premiership for the St. George Dragons and Brisbane Broncos, achieving selection to play for Queensland in State of Origin series, and London Broncos.
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Ross Strudwick is an Australian former rugby league footballer and coach. An Australian international, New South Wales and Queensland representative halfback of the 1970s, he played club football in the New South Wales Rugby Football League Premiership for St. George and in the Brisbane Rugby League Premiership for Fortitude Valley. Strudwick later embarked on a coaching career in Queensland and England.
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Raymond Kehm "Ray" Smith is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Essendon and Melbourne in the Victorian Football League (VFL) during the 1970s. He also played professional rugby league for Fortitude Valley in 1970 and was a part of their premiership-winning team.
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Ali Brigginshaw is an Australian rugby league footballer who plays for the Brisbane Broncos in the NRL Women's Premiership and for Valleys Diehards in the QRL Women's Premiership.
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