Tributes have poured in for West Cumbrian rugby league legend Sid Lowdon.

Whitehaven Hall of Fame star and one of the select Haven immortal side Mr Lowdon, 81, had a glittering rugby league career.

Mr Lowdon also played for Workington Town and had a short spell at Salford under Gus Risman.

Haven general manager Amanda Hewer said: "The club is deeply saddened to announce the death of Whitehaven Hall of Fame star Sid Lowdon.

"The club, and indeed the whole town would like to offer our deepest condolences to Sid's family and his friends.

"A great all round sportsman on the rugby field he could play anywhere from one to six.

"Sid was one of those great players from perhaps the greatest era of Rugby league and one doubts if we will see his like in a long time."

The Whitehaven butcher’s son had the chance of kicking off his career as a centre forward or winger playing with Stanley Matthews at Blackpool or John Charles at Leeds United.

He was also courted by cricket and rugby union, but league claimed him.

One of the most naturally gifted sportsmen to come out of west Cumbria, he signed for Whitehaven while doing his National Service.

At the time he was playing for the army's rugby union side alongside a host of top names including Billy Boston, Phil Jackson and Mick Sullivan, all Great Britain league internationals.

He signed in 1954 and after amassing 315 points in 108 games for Haven, most at centre, he transferred to Salford for a whopping fee of £5,250 in 1957.

He then returned to Cumbria, joining Town in 1959 where he went on to play 179 matches, scoring 548 points and helping the club to the Western Division Championship in 1962, beating Widnes 10-0 in a replay at Wigan.

Workington chairman Garry Mounsey said: "The club was very sad to hear of Sid’s death.

"He played in a golden era for Workington Town and will always be remembered as a stand out player in a team that had more than its share of great players.

"His versatility as a player was legendary as was his reputation as a gentleman off the pitch.

"On behalf of the club I’d like to pass on our sincere condolences to his family."

Despite only being at Whitehaven for four years, Mr Lowdon made a huge impact.

He captained Whitehaven at the tender age of 20 on the left wing, in their famous 1956, 14-11 victory over Australia, facing the legendary Clive Churchill.

This was to prove the elusive three-quarter's finest hour as his jinking, side-stepping runs and deceptive change of pace sliced open the Kangaroos.

And he was also one of the 'great 13' that played in the 1957 Challenge Cup semi-final at Odsal.

Mr Lowdon also earned 20 Cumberland caps.