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The old days...closer games...no blow outs


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#21 sweaty craiq

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 11:27 PM

I may have got the wrong end of the stick but isn't the building council/education owned and central training are one of those companies reliant on grants/education money to exist, spongers to us taxpayers, they play the system they know very well and are obviously well in with the WMBC timewaters. (Put me in charge of the money wasting councils and their workforce and I'll get rid of the debt in 2 years)
Now Orrell's old ground - Whelan owns that does he not? Didn't he seize the deeds after ploughing a few million in - then sold a fair chunk of the land off for housing?

#22 Padge

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 11:46 PM

I may have got the wrong end of the stick but isn't the building council/education owned and central training are one of those companies reliant on grants/education money to exist, spongers to us taxpayers, they play the system they know very well and are obviously well in with the WMBC timewaters. (Put me in charge of the money wasting councils and their workforce and I'll get rid of the debt in 2 years)
Now Orrell's old ground - Whelan owns that does he not? Didn't he seize the deeds after ploughing a few million in - then sold a fair chunk of the land off for housing?

Whelan doesn't own Orrell. Wigan Rugby Club do.

As for your other point I am not getting in to a debate with such an ignoramus.

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#23 sweaty craiq

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:01 AM

Whelan doesn't own Orrell. Wigan Rugby Club do.

As for your other point I am not getting in to a debate with such an ignoramus.


Are you sure on Whelan not owning Orrells land/ground. The only references I can find quote Whelan owning it??

I take it I was correct on the other point, and I have touched a nerve with my local government views - I now also assume I pay your wages from my council tax.

#24 Padge

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:23 AM

Are you sure on Whelan not owning Orrells land/ground. The only references I can find quote Whelan owning it??

Try looking harder.

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#25 Viking Warrior

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:29 AM

went to a lancashire cup final in the 60's between saints and wire at wigan, the final score was 2-2
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#26 Ian (Pencil) Elliott

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:35 AM

Wigan's problems began in 1996 when Jack Robinson was charged at Bolton Crown Court of attempting to pervert the course of justice and incitement to create a false instrument. this eventually led to the clubs bank refusing to do business with the current board of directors and limiting their overdraft facilities until such time as the board was replaced with directors the bank felt they could trust. In 1997 the proverbial hit the fan as without the bank playing ball Wigan were financially in it.

On top of that Robinson was locked in a battle with Whelan over Central Park, Robinson had pulled the plug on the idea of joining Whelan in a joint venture of a new stadium for soccer and rugby. Whelan then drew up plans to buy Central Park and redevelop it as a dual use stadium. Robinson once again turned Whelan down. Whelan knowing that the club was struggling, because of the aforementioned bank problem, sat and waited knowing full well that Robinson wouldn't be able to carry on.

Whelan got on with building his new stadium, and oddly enough in the planning process he had to provide a traffic impact assessment for the stadium for Saturday and Sunday afternoons and Friday evenings.

Robinson did the Tesco deal, but still had to go and eventually Whelan got control. Basically as in rugby league on the pitch the guy with the most money won.

That's a quick potted history and not an invitation to debate.

Or is it that Wigan could no longer win everything in the game so they had not enough prize money to pay there full time stars.

You seem to know a lot about my club so I thought I would give my views on Wigan from a far. Ooops it was not an invitation to debate, me bad and I thought it was an RL forum.
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#27 Viking Warrior

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:37 AM

the formation of super league and the accompanying professionalism at every member club certainly ended wigans domination of the game........
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#28 Padge

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:38 AM

Or is it that Wigan could no longer win everything in the game so they had not enough prize money to pay there full time stars.

You seem to know a lot about my club so I thought I would give my views on Wigan from a far. Ooops it was not an invitation to debate, me bad and I thought it was an RL forum.

the reason for the debate comment was because we were heading way off topic.

If you want to discuss Wigan's history start a thread, I'll give you chapter and verse.

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#29 sweaty craiq

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 09:56 AM

Think I saw your new series advertised on the Bullsheeite Channel Sky 123456 - 'The world according to Padge - a civil servants view of the world of RL'.

#30 shrek

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:13 AM

I suspect pitches/facilities of the past were also something of a leveler that get forgotten as we look back at historical results, hard to play the brand of rugby we often see now on ploughed fields in the depths of Winter, in a gale with the rain coming in sideways and the defence 5 yards away!

From memory on the potted history of Wigan I'd throw in the Rathbone/Whelan element also got in the way of anything constructive being done before anyone's hand was forced after business dealings between the pair.

#31 Padge

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:31 AM

I suspect pitches/facilities of the past were also something of a leveler that get forgotten as we look back at historical results, hard to play the brand of rugby we often see now on ploughed fields in the depths of Winter, in a gale with the rain coming in sideways and the defence 5 yards away!

From memory on the potted history of Wigan I'd throw in the Rathbone/Whelan element also got in the way of anything constructive being done before anyone's hand was forced after business dealings between the pair.

Both very good points

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#32 sweaty craiq

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:32 AM

I suspect pitches/facilities of the past were also something of a leveler that get forgotten as we look back at historical results, hard to play the brand of rugby we often see now on ploughed fields in the depths of Winter, in a gale with the rain coming in sideways and the defence 5 yards away!

From memory on the potted history of Wigan I'd throw in the Rathbone/Whelan element also got in the way of anything constructive being done before anyone's hand was forced after business dealings between the pair.


Shrek - I also agree, and one reason why RU scores can be closer than current RL ones.
Do you know who legally owns the training ground? Hope you can help.

Edited by sweaty craiq, 30 December 2012 - 10:33 AM.


#33 shrek

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:43 AM

Shrek - I also agree, and one reason why RU scores can be closer than current RL ones.
Do you know who legally owns the training ground? Hope you can help.

Don't have any links, but my understanding was Lenegan played hardball when buying Wigan and as part of negotiations he got the facility at Orrell (which has seen a decent amount investment since he bought the club) and property on Hilton Street, there maybe others as well.

Edit - I clearly have to much time on my hands!

Independent Article

Part of the delay in completing the change of ownership was in order to thrash out an extra 25-year lease which gives Wigan guaranteed use of the ground they share with Wigan Athletic until 2050, as well as the freehold of their training complex at Orrell.


Edited by shrek, 30 December 2012 - 10:55 AM.


#34 Padge

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:55 AM

Don't have any links, but my understanding was Lenegan played hardball when buying Wigan and as part of negotiations he got the facility at Orrell (which has seen a decent amount investment since he bought the club) and property on Hilton Street, there maybe others as well.

I have just asked someone at the club to confirm and he said Lenigan/The Club

Whelan put it on the books of the rugby club around 2004 so the club as a business had assests to operate with, Lenigan when he bought the club insisted this asset remained with the club.

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#35 sweaty craiq

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 10:57 AM

Thank you.

#36 southstand loiner

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 12:16 PM

I have just asked someone at the club to confirm and he said Lenigan/The Club

Whelan put it on the books of the rugby club around 2004 so the club as a business had assests to operate with, Lenigan when he bought the club insisted this asset remained with the club.


well im glad i kept out of the ownership issue part of that debate but i do question the value of the land remaining as you state its worth millions but my understanding was that the portion of the ground sold for housing was the only area of real worth as the rest of the ground has a covernant on it resticting its use to sporting purposes only which would make the asset much less valuble but on the plus side give contiuned use as a training venue and home for the academy which is a good thing
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#37 Manx RL

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 01:47 AM

8-36 away to Salford?
Blowout!
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#38 tonyXIII

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 11:54 AM

well im glad i kept out of the ownership issue part of that debate but i do question the value of the land remaining as you state its worth millions but my understanding was that the portion of the ground sold for housing was the only area of real worth as the rest of the ground has a covernant on it resticting its use to sporting purposes only which would make the asset much less valuble but on the plus side give contiuned use as a training venue and home for the academy which is a good thing


The question of value is largely one of opinion. For example, my own house in Crete is worth about 250k (euros), but nobody is buying property there, so it's actually worth sweet #### adams.

As for covenants, afaik there are ways and means of circumventing most of these, probably involving the expenditure of money. They are not quite as 'hard and fast' as most people believe.

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#39 Marauder

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 12:21 PM

Its been shown previously on here there were lots of blow outs in the past,

However to reply to your point about should we have carried on as we were. Lets move forward ten years (because we did carry on) and look were carrying on got us to in the 1990s.



January 1990
RFL sign deal with BSB for live Sunday game at 6:30 on a Sunday evening.

February 1990
Wigan announce record £280,000 profit.

March 1990
St.Helens home fixture v Warrington abandoned after 3 minutes after part of roof blows off stand and lands on the pitch

April 1990
BSB announce first ever live coverage of a tour to NZ
Halifax players threaten strike action over unpaid wages, Fax sell Neil James to Leeds for £20k to pay outstanding wages to players.
Barrow list 10 players
Halifax hit with £70,000 tax demand from inland revenue and face winding up order.

June 1990
Halifax hit money troubles and are being administered by accountants Price Waterhouse

August 1990
Its revealed that Halifax owe creditors £760,000, Price Waterhouse have trouble off-loading Fax to new buyer because players are in dispute over reduced contracts. Eventuall resolved and new board take-over.
RFL sign a£1.5m 3 year SatelliteTV deal with British Aerospace, 90 games per season are to be shown in pubs and clubs only, 30 games to be live on Sundays at 1:00PM

September 1990
Runcorn Highfield apply to RFL to be allowed to move to St.Helens Town FC, the move is approved.
Sheffield Eagles move to Don Valley Stadium

October 1990
Runcorn coach Dave Chisnall quits after losing all his 38 games in charge.

November 1990
Second diision clubs hold a crisis meeting to discuss the contract system

December 1990
Leigh start listing players as they hit a financial crisis.
Scarborough anounce intention to apply for membership of the RFL

January 1991
Scarborough admitted as a member club of the RFL by getting the exact minimum votes required.
Arbittration ruling forces the RFL to accept that players from EEC countries are exempt from quotas
Mick Dean of Leigh threatens to sue the club for nonfullfilment of contract.
Rugby League Council recommend acceptance of The Hetherington plan for 3 division of 14, 8 and 14.

April 1991
Leigh enter administration
Wigan Win Challenge Cup for 4th season in a row

May 1991
Runcorn Highfield seek approval for name change to Highfield RLFC
Sheffield Eagles sign their first local recruit, Jason Davidson

June 1991
Doncaster list entire playing rosta of 36 players
Leigh are running out of time for a buyer to step and save the club, fans launch a petition asking for the local council to save the club.
Swinton offer Leigh the option of a ground share at Sation road, they turn it down.
RFL project £17m of sponsorship and TV deals over next five years.

August 1991
Tony Cotteral heads a syndicate that saves Leigh at the last minute.
Wakefield escape threat of closure with fomation of its first ever board of directors.

December 1991
Swinton a bid to resolve cash crisis sever contracts of three Australian imports one of which is also coach.

May 1992
New club Scarborough in financial crisis
RFL agree £3m+ four year deal with BSkyB, deal includes Friday night games from League and Premiership. They also sign a 4 year £2.5m deal withe BBC for the challenge cup and regal trophy.
Vote on return to two divisions defeated.
Swinton sell Station Road and move to Bury

June 1992
Chorley Borough move to Horwich
Revealed that Scarborough are in trouble with £113,000 of debt they can't pay.

August 1992
Scarborough fold still owing £60,000 to creditors
Two French teams receive invite to play in Regal Trophy, XIII Catalan and Carcassonne

September 1992
Blackpool Gladiators move to Blackpool Mechincs FC

October 1992
Blackpool chairman Alan Sherrat puts the club up for sale at £50k

November 1992
Leigh get High Court reprieve following threat of eviction from Hilton Park.
Swinton coach Tony Barrow accepts pay cut to ease financial worries at the club.

December 1992
RFL propse two divisions of 16 with the three bottom clubs demoted to the Aligance League.
Hull KR players refuse to turn out for a game against Leigh in a pay dispute talks take a week to settle the dispute.

January 1993
Swinton saved from liquidation by a consotium headed by former chairman Malcolm White.

February 1993
Leigh fail in a bid to buy back Hilton Park for £300k

March 1993
League appoint a 3 man study group to investigate switching to summer rugby.
Wigans balance sheet shows loss of £300k on a turnover of £3m (includes £440k paid for Offiah)

June 1993
Leigh are offered a reprieve over their ground problems when they are allowed to stay for 12 months.
Hull FC put 7 players on the transfer list and coach Royce Simmons runs 5 marathons to raise money tp pay for Aussie imports.
Warrington list 13 players for a total of £340k when they refuse lower contract payments
Blackpool, Nottingham and Chorley join new national conference league.
London Crusaders move from Crystal Palace to Copthall Sports Stadium, Barnet.

July 1993
Jonothan Davies gets free transfer to Warrington, thus easing financial pressures at Widnes.

August 1993
Halifax list 7 players for a total of £170,000

November 1993
London Crusaders impose 20% pay cut to ease financial problems.

December 1993
The RFL offer help to London in finding additional or replacement directors.

January1994
Bradford have a clear out, Hobbs and Noble given free transfers, McGowan and Cordle listed at£40k an £15k.
Bramley announce plans to leave McLaren Field and move in with Northern Premier League soccer club Farsley Celtic.
Plans for 1995 Centenary World Cup are threatened by RFU making noises about moving the union World Cup for that year from S.A. to England.

March 1994
Wigan's wage bill tops £2m a year mark.
Huddersfield in administration, administrator says all British players are available and is open to offers.

May 1994
Receivers at Huddersfield sack coach Murphy.

June 1994
Oldham sell Watersheddings for £1.25m to pay-off debts.
Bramley decide to stay at McLaren Field for 12 months.
Widnes look into selling ground to council.
Hunslet look to playing games at McLaren Field instead of Elland Road.
U.S. cable TV company Prime Television pay £1.3m for rights to the centenary World Cup.

July 1994
Government proposals on tabacco advertising threaten lucrative sponsorship deals.
Leigh enter administration.

August 1994
The RFL presents a crisis document Framing the Future, it includes proposals to merge clubs and the setting up of a Premier League.
Clubs give the RFL the nod to formulate plans for a Premier League.
Huddersfield celebrate the opening of the McAlpine Stadium by beating Barrow.

September 1994
The RFL propose a 16 club Premier League.

October 1994
Widnes in more talks with council about sale of ground.

November 1994
Hunslet list 7 players.

December 1994
Leigh appoint their 19th coach in twenty years, Ian Lucas
Doncaster enter administration with debts of £1.4m

February 1995
Salary cap introduced 50% of income can be spent on players with a reduction to 40% in 2 years

March 1995
Leigh secure future at Hilton Park by entering ground share deal with non-League soccer club Horwich RMI
Sheffield Eagles pull out of a proposed merger with Doncaster following a "breach of confidentialty", Sheffield then set to take-over Doncaster in a deal with administrators, deal falls through after RFL declare Doncaster players as free agents.
Leigh buy club back from administrators.
Take-over bid for Bradford Northern
Doncaster bought from administrators by owners of Tattersfield ground.
Ken Arthurson, head of Australian RL, asks the RFL to reconsider summer rugby proposals as it threatens the international tour cycle.

April 1995
All hell lets loose.

So whats different today except the names of the clubs & amount of debt mentioned.
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#40 Mushy

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 01:00 PM

What a fairly miserable set of postings. I see there being far more decent players now than pre SL. I also think the game could have been swallowed up by our rivals if not for SL. All is not perfect - the game is run by humans for humans after all - and I see plenty of room for improvement, but overall we are surviving ok in a fairly difficult environment.

I really like Rugby League and am looking forward to 2013 and wish my fellow forum contributors all the best.

Edited by Mushy, 31 December 2012 - 02:51 PM.