There comes a point in any 'conflict' where you have to park the past if you want to go forward.
So, for what it's worth, here's my view...
It's clear that the Football Club wants control of the stadium - to own it outright - and, for mine, there are two ways for them to do that.
We need to remind ourselves that Hornets can't afford either the asking price of the shares - or to service the historical StadCo debt, so it's not tenable for us to regain ownership of the shares from the RFL, so...
Firstly, if we support the RFL's sale of the shares to the Dale, they have put a deal on the table that will retain us as tenants at Spotland (as we already are) for the next 25 years, on significantly more favorable terms that benefit us financially, which is crucial at the moment as revenue/cashflow are - as always - very tight.
The existing deal was forced on the re-founded club based on the Dale's experience with our predecessor - and it's a disproportionately large amount that we have to find every month in order to stand still - but beggars can't be choosers and we were begging a lot to get the new club off the ground.
The new deal - which comes bound to a 25 year tenancy agreement - is financially much more beneficial. By my cursory calculations, the next five years would cost us £84,000 less than the previous five. In our club that sort of money goes a very long way.
Since the reformation of the club in 2009, the Co-op has always been a tenant of the StadCo. We were always going to have to rent in order to have a place to play.
It's taken five years to demonstrate that we are not cut from the same cloth as our predecessors - and we need to capitalise on the hard won trust we've had to build with the football club, by demonstrating some trust in them.
The alternative approach would be to block the RFL's sale, which would leave the status quo in place. In this scenario, the Dale could viably let the StadCo go bust and buy it back from the receiver for next to nothing. That way, the RFL not only loses its share of the StadCo, it also loses the £120k it paid for the shares.
This leaves us in exactly the same situation, but without the incentive of the rent deal - and with five years worth of goodwill-building with both parties in tatters.
So, what would the alternative be?
1. Buy land and build a ground? We'd need ten times what we've been able to raise in the last five years just to pay our rent to create something even approaching Championship standard. That might remain a long-term goal, but we also need to address our immediate and medium-term future.
2. 'Acquire' a ground on the cheap? I refer us all to Whitebank - and we don't have the capital reserves to stretch to that!
3. Rent out of town? Become like Swinton? Nomads playing wherever and whenever. We've battled to (re)build a fan-base here, a move out of town would kill us.
The reality is, our choices are few. We are hamstrung by the actions of our predecessors - and by what remains, in reality, a hand-to-mouth existence where literally every single penny counts.
If - at the relaunch of the club in 2009 - the deal currently on the table was offered, we'd've seen it as an opportunity. Then as now, we needed a place to play and Spotland offered the most favourable option. The new deal gives us the same option at improved terms. Why wouldn't we consider it if it improves our chances of survival? Which is what we're really talking about here.
Not winning games, or losing games or getting promoted. Survival. Our existence - as always - is fragile. Do not take our club for granted.
Ultimately, we have no bargaining power. No leverage, no chips in the game - other than improved relationships with the Dale and the RFL salvaged, from the car-crash we inherited in 2009.
If - in 2009 someone offered us a 25 year lifeline - we'd've taken it. We're the same club, the same people, in the same situation. Why do anything differently?
Delighted to announce the 2014 Hornets Heritage Festival which takes place in December - a fantastic prgramme of events that celebrates our club - and our game's rich history.
At the heart of the festival, Hornets have pulled off a major coup in attracting the Rugby League Cares 'Rugby League Heritage On Tour' Exhibition, which arrives at Spotland on 3rd December and runs until the 17th December. It's open daily from 10 am to 4pm and admission is FREE!
The exhibition tells the story of the game, its players and supporters and, most importantly, the communities that made our sport. In addition to historic memorabilia - including a player's shirt from the first-ever rugby league test match and the ball from the famous Odsal 1954 Challenge Cup final replay - the exhibition tells the story of the game's split from rugby union, the first World Cup, the banning of league in World War Two France and much more.
To tie in with the exhibition's visit, Hornets are running two major heritage events
An indulgent afternoon for fans to share their special moments, memories - and memorabilia! Includes a Q&A with the Rugby League Cares ‘Heritage on Tour’ exhibition curator Victoria Dawson.
We all have one or two pieces of 'Rugby League Treasure' that are important to us.
Whether it's programmes from extraordinary games, favourite Hornets players' shirts, badges from our travels or photographs of memorable days, we all have our own personal little piece of Rugby League History.
But why just leave it in a drawer? As part of the Hornets Heritage Festival - we'd love you to share your items with us at the Hornets Heritage Show & Tell event on Sunday 7th December at Spotland Stadium at 2pm.
Taking part is easy: just bring your favourite piece of Rugby League memorabilia and tell your fellow fans all about it: how you came by it - and why it means so much to you. It'll be a fun, friendly, informal afternoon of shameless indulgence in the things we love most about Rugby League.
And if you have more than one item you'd like to share, bring them all - the more the merrier!
The Rugby League Cares ‘Heritage on Tour’ exhibition will also be open during the afternoon and its curator, Rugby League Historian Victoria Dawson, will also be joining us to answer questions on items from the exhibition and the RL Archive. She will also be launching a new heritage concept for Rochdale that fans can get involved in.
Brothers in Arms - the 2014 Heroes of Hornets induction Dinner.
Join us for great food and to recognise those who have made a heroic contribution to Rochdale Hornets - past and present.
Themed 'Brothers in Arms' to recognise the centenary of the start of the First World War, the second annual Heroes of Hornets induction will pay tribute those who have made a heroic contribution to the club throughout its history.
The Annual Heroes of Hornets presentation - themed this year around Brothers in Arms - recognises individuals past and present who have made a heroic contribution to the club throughout its history. And this year - to commemorate the centenary of the commencement of World War 1, Rochdale Hornets will will proudly honour the players who swapped their club's colours for regimental colours, and who represented their club, their town and their country with distinction.
By 1915, 24 Rochdale Hornets players had joined-up to fight - four of whom made the ultimate sacrifice: Club Captain and England International Walter Roman, Sergeant Twigg, Private T West and Private CJ Burton. The club will also pay tribute to those at home who kept the spirit of the club alive, holding fundraisers to send footballs to our soldiers in France and continuing - against the odds - to field a team until December 1917.
We will also be inducting some more recent heroes on what promises to be an emotional evening. And, if that's not enough, Rugby League Historian Victoria Dawson will present a showing of rare, recently discovered, 1914 Rorke's Drift Australia & New Zealand Tour footage - where Hornets' own Walter Roman toured with England. I've seen this footage a couple of times now and it's absolutely spellbinding to see how our game looked at this key point in history.
An informal dinner will be followed by presentations to this year's inductees.
Rugby League Cares ‘Heritage on Tour’ exhibition will also be open during the evening.
For more information on events - and to book your tickets for the Heroes of Hornets evening, please contact Ryan at the club on 01706 648004.
Fans of all clubs welcome - it'll be good to see you.
Posted by Hornetto
on 20 September 2014 - 06:01 PM
Saturday games would be very bad in our house. I usually miss a couple of games a season - and plan those around away games. But I'd be likely to miss at least four home games - maybe more - on Saturdays. Again, already having bought a season ticket, it'd be a bit of a kick in the spuds (We have family darn-sarf and visit on Saturdays, then drive back Sunday for games).
Hence, I'd have to plan the games I'd usually miss around home games - which means that Hemel/Oldham - whoever - would get my matchday spends instead.
I do hope this turns out to be a bit more than a backslapping thread!
Do you know the turnover this profit arose on and the details on the team spend, salary cap and central funding i.e. figures central to the success of a Rochdale Hornets in supporters hands as against the old Hornets struggles?
What's the clubs ambition? Does the profit go into a rainy day fund??
Turnover is vanity - profit is sanity.
The immediate ambition as stated at the AGM is to be 'a flagship Championship club'.
May I take this opportunity to say how well you played Sunday,can't believe your in bottom 3 with way you play the game in a open style,& special mention to the small but very vocal supporters that got behind your team. I think you've been very unlucky this year with relegating 5 clubs,in my opinion it's crazy but that's the RFL for you. Anyway good luck in championship 1 next season I hope you bounce straight back up,your a good friendly club that is well run & lives within its means,GOOD LUCK!!
Cheers Graham, I was one of the people you spoke to. Thought it was a great game. Hopefully we'll be back soon. I'll bring a brolly next time.
Promotion and relegation is so deeply ingrained in British sporting culture that people get a bit hung-up on it. If we have it, all good. If a competition doesn't have it, being the best you can be in the competition you're in is no less valid a goal.
But we can only play within the structures we have, so people can either rail against them and expend a whole load of energy hating the thing we purport to love, or just get behind their club/team - regardless of where they get their players from - and support them to be as good as they can be.
If people opened their minds to the fact that 'the way we've always done things' might not be the best way to actually do things, the world becomes a more interesting place. Indeed, an awful lot of Rugby League people do tend to have the debilitating habit of walking backwards into the future.
Staying up was always mission impossible with five coming down - and plenty of people said we wouldn't win a game all season, but seven wins thus far has been a decent effort. The battering of Fev being the pick of the bunch.
Of the teams in the bottom four we have the most wins and fewest defeats - and if we can finish third bottom or better, any other season we'd've stayed up. A season of competing at a significantly higher standard (it is a surprising jump in pace and intensity) will stand us in good stead. And if we can get third bottom or better we'll get a small parachute payment too to compensate for relegation due to the restructure. Whatever happens we'll be coming back better-off, on and off the field. And, while the 'miracle' we all hoped for hasn't come off, I wouldn't have swapped this season for anything
Would we beat Oldham if we played you this week? Yes, by some distance.
And how does that make you feel watching Rochdale develop these Saints players for a season? A lot of Hornets resources being used to ease the Saints purse strings, and for what? The player goes back to Saints after a few months and the young Rochdale junior left to take his place is totally disillusioned at having had his career path blocked by a DR player.
Well, we're bringing through Rochdale lads AND making DR work for us... so it works for us.
We had a couple of DR players last season who signed for us this season as 'ours'. so it works both ways if you're prepared to find a way to make it work. A coach/club will always have to find ways to keep players happy/engaged.
But as we've had much the same DR guys on a regular basis, it 'feels' ok to me.
But I've watched a lot of NSW Cup, so I'm a bit more comfortable with the concept of a partner club.