K Day is a unique day that has been a fixture in the Taylors Mistake calendar since 1918.
Some of the following is extracted from the Centenary publication – “OVER THE HILL” FOR 100 YEARS.
There was always an attempt by Taylors to ‘manage’ K day. A meeting on March 5, 1918, agreed (on the motion of Messrs A. Dow and Hobson) the following:
That the Surf Association be asked to take control of the competition for the cup under the following conditions-
– That the Cup be known as the “Taylors Mistake Life and Surf Bathing Challenge (sic) Cup presented by Mr F. D Kesteven for annual competition at Taylors Mistake on opening day under the conditions as laid down for the Ray Blank Cup competition,”
– That the cup be returned to Taylors Mistake seven days before opening day;
– That the Taylors Mistake Club are to be known as the owners.
In the early years of the event, it become apparent that Taylors Mistake was not always content with the way the Canterbury Association changed the rules!
… And even in 1940, Taylors Mistake was waging minor war ….. decried the actions of the…Canterbury Association for using the front-page advertisement on their programme in such a manner as may mislead the public into believing that Kesteven Cup Day was being run by the Association, with our Club as only second fiddle. Matt Wilson maintained; “they are stealing our day!”
In the early years K day was a ‘social event’ and was strongly supported by Ballin’s Breweries – thanks to Jim Ballin. K Day wasn’t just a day when the Kesteven Cup and the Black and White Cup were contested. The Ballin’s held a picnic!
The social nature of the event was challenged in the 1950s. As concerned as he was at living arrangements away from home for the lads and lasses, Keith Le Cren was equally concerned about their well-being on their own beach. So much so, in fact, that with the vigorous support of parent and committee man Jack Hunter, he successfully proposed there should be no beer at K Day. Jim Ballin must have turned in his grave at this heresy, but the teetotal rule remained for 1956 and while it was revoked in 1957 – 20 gallons purchased – and 1958, Taylors Mistake was “dry” again in 1959. Well, theoretically anyway.
K day was traditionally social and team based. The competition format is still team orientated despite the removal of 6-man R&R (the last national event for this was held in 2001).