NORTH One East club Bradford & Bingley have appointed a new skipper.

Hooker Mat Cochrane will replace Tom Booth, who is moving to London due to work.

Cochrane, 29, who has been at the Bees since he was six, said: “I have come up through the age groups and have grown up with players such as Ryan Wederell, Roger Raper and Ben Greaves.

“I was really pleased when coach Hugh Gumbs offered me the captaincy, being a local lad and having been at the club for so long, but I have big boots to fill in Tom’s.”

The former Bingley Grammar School pupil, who made his first XV debut in 2010, added: “It is difficult not knowing when the season will start but Hugh has a six-week pre-season programme for when we do know when it will start.”

Flanker Booth’s move to the Big Smoke has been prompted by his girlfriend Hannah Breheny, who is a talent producer for TV.

He is due to move to Ealing in mid-August to prepare for work as a primary school teacher but is adamant that he hasn’t finished with the Bees yet.

Booth, who has been at Wagon Lane for five seasons and captained Bradford & Bingley for the last four, said: “I hope to do pre-season up here but I have never had the chance for a final farewell and we haven’t had a presentation evening, as we didn’t know that our match at Pocklington would be our last of the 2019-20 season.

“Therefore I would like to come back up here next season and play one or two matches.”

Booth, who was an under-11 at Wagon Lane and studied in London at St Mary’s University at Twickenham and Kingston University, said that the highlight of his tenure as Bees skipper was their promotion from Yorkshire Division One in 2015-16.

He said: “That was a really talented team.”

Booth said of his successor: “He is the right man for the job.”

Bradford & Bingley have now lost two of their three regular starting back-rowers, as Tom Cummins has joined Otley.