Playing Devil’s advocate you could look at your first point like this. It is no secret that most clubs under the RL banner are not financially well of to say the least. Our club has had more obstacles to overcome than most, says to me that to get us to the position we are in and the position we are ready to go to that at least some things must be being done right, with regards to the running of the club. I doubt not many if any clubs have faced the adversity that we have had to overcome since 1997.
With regards to Bradford, I think the RFL will be helping a lot of clubs in these austere times, without making big noises about it. Financially I do not mind clubs receiving help on certain matters. But I disagree with clubs holding on to their league status because of their following. I do not think Salford have had the same rallying call from all of SL, because they do not bring as many fans as Bradford so it does not matter if they are dropped from the top tier to the other clubs in there.
Yes Rochdale are being run by a Cooperative but it has not yet been proven as a successful model as to run a club by. Also I think time has clouded your memory with regards to a committee run club. In those days Oldham were constantly in debt and flew by the seat of teir pants, they also had the luxury of selling players to raise money, something that is not available to today’s club administrators. Also during that period they sold off land to make money which was the start of the decline.
Apart from the years that Oldham Bears operated Oldham RLFC never had the amount of debts that the club as now without it being secured by assets.
In the days of the committee the debt never exceeded their total value of assets. The club ( a members club run by its elected committee) had an overdraft with the bank and other creditors .In 1987 when the committee club finished their total debts were less than £200k but their assets were worth a lot more.
The committee did not sell off any of the land that they owned it was transfered to the Limited company which eventually became Oldham Rugby plc and traded as the Bears. It was that company that sold off all the land which covered about 12.5 acres. It was that company that decided to move from Watersheddings despite their being an agreement in place to stay there and have it rebuilt year by year. All the members got for selling their assets was a £1.00 share.
Oldham RLFC as a members club existed for over 100 years. It was generally well run and its assets always exceeded its liabilities.
It is not my memory of the committee club that is clouded but your knowledge of the facts.
The members club was owned by the fans and run by the fans through their appointed committee.
The Cooperative now running Rochdale Hornets is the same as a members club and to say it as not been proven as a succesful model in the way to run a rugby club is like saying that Rugby Football league for the first 100 years of their history were very badly run. Quite a lot of the clubs were run as and by a committee. It was managed with genuine passion by the fans who could and often did change their committee on a yearly basis. It was their club, their assets and they who were responsible for the debts.
The position that the club is in at the present time is that of a very large debt covered by few assets which does not imply success.
And as this is a situation relevant to most clubs run by a company which appears to be the best senario.
I dont know how long you have been watching the roughyeds but your knowledge of facts prior to 1987 is somewhat lacking.
Rochdale Hornets have gone from a company which had severe financial problems to a cooperative run by members which appears to be doing alright ( I am not a member so its a presumption on my part). They are taking a well trodden way of running the club which history as proved works.
Time alone will tell whether they are as succesfull as other clubs historical past.