Created in 1875, \’Widnes Football Club\’ became a founder member of the Northern Union just 20 years later, becoming known as \’The Chemics\’. During the club\’s early history, the Lancashire League title of 1919-20 was the lone sign of playing success until their appearance in the Challenge Cup Final of 1930, where they defeated St. Helens 10-3 in the first of seven Challenge Cup victories. As early as the mid 1920\’s the club had survived its first brush with extinction – being saved by a valiant Ground Purchase Appeal led by Club Secretary Tom Naughton, whose name is to be forever linked with the club as the ground was named \’Naughton Park\’ for over 65 years. The halcyon days of the club – dubbed \’the Cup Kings\’ – were from 1974 to 1990 when in addition to Challenge Cup successes they were Rugby League Champions and Premiership winners on a total of 9 occassions, whilst also having regular successes in the Lancashire Cup, Floodlit Trophy, and John Player Trophy competitions, and the Charity Shield. The zenith of their successes came when Canberra were defeated at Old Trafford on 4th October 1989 to make the \’Chemics\’ the first \’official\’ World Club Champions. The advent of Super League has seen the club largely consigned to life in the second tier of rugby league, save for a brief return from 2002-2005. In 2007, the Vikings won the Northern Rail Cup for the first time before entering Administration at the end of the season, being saved by the intervention of local businessman Steve O\’Connor. In 2009, the club again won the Northern Rail Cup giving it the opportunity to apply for a Super League licence in 2012. On 31 March 2011, the Vikings were awarded a Super League licence by the Rugby Football League for the 2012-14 seasons.