The first match at Parkside was on February 11th 1888. In front of 5000 spectators Hunslet beat Mirfield by one try scored, by Carr, and six minors to two minors. The Hunslet team, captained by Walter Gilston, included William Goldthorpe.
The ground was officially opened two weeks later by the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Councillor A Scarr, and there was a crowd of around 7000 to witness the game which was a Yorkshire Cup Tie between Hunslet and Brighouse Rangers. Due to all the formalities the match did not kick off until 3.45. It ended, in darkness, with a Hunslet defeat.