Death to the Rah Rah's

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  1. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Myths debunked

    The world is changing, more and more games will be beamed onto people's TV's, laptops, phones and tablets, BUT let's not forget the Challenge Cup is still recognised throughout the world as a top class competition, even if for RL diehards it now plays second fiddle to the Grand Final. If the final is to stay in London, then the marketing should be reflected to specifically target the south of the country and try to reach out to new audiences and put on an event with all the glitz and glamour to rival the NFL games. The 'traditional' RL market of floating supporters having their annual weekend in the capital has gradually declined and the younger supporters won't travel to London unless it's their team in the final, so the game needs to reach out to a new audience. Rather than sell on all the 'Club Wembley' seats to supporters, why not use it as a marketing tool to invite representatives of blue chip companies in the capital to experience the sport first hand, or even give each professional club a batch of tickets for them to invite potential sponsors down to try and help them sell the RL experience to their own potential sponsors
  2. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Myths debunked

    No doubt the competition needs a full revamp to one again engage with supporters. in regards to the point about the last 2 years attendances being the lowest, hasn’t their been issues with the trains into Euston for the last 2 years which will put off casual supporters? the final needs to be moved away from the bank holiday weekend for a start and there’s needs to be 12 weeks between the semi finals and the final as a trip to London takes some planning .......and saving for. My wife and I live in Cumbria, and a 2 night stay in the capital including train tickets will cost well in excess of £1000 including meals and a few drinks. or the pair of us could have an all inclusive holiday for 7 days for the same money!!
  3. Death to the Rah Rah's

    West Wales Raiders

    without getting into the argument as to whether West Wales should be in League 1 or not, it does open the debate about restructuring the professional game to implement a system where the likes of the Welsh clubs, Hemel, and any other new club can develop at their own pace playing in a competition that gives them a chance of winning games. Hemel were a thriving amateur club, lovely ground, junior sides and money in the bank - 5 years later, the decision to join the ranks of the semi-pro game has nearly destroyed them. West Wales for all their on field troubles deserve some credit for soldering on to get to the end of the season, as it must be soul destroying for them being on the end of 100 point defeats. The RFL seriously need to look at a the entire league structure from top to bottom. The regional leagues are fine for clubs which are happy to play social rugby, and the NCL is great for the most progressive sides, but do we really need 4 NCL Divisions, which in my personal opinion has weakened the Regional Leagues. Far better to have a new league structure - Super League, Championship, League 1, League 2 (which would be for development sides but would have criteria to ensure they can produce their own players ie: junior rugby, open age amateur side etc), NCL divisions 1 and 2, the rest of the NCL sides to return to the Regional leagues. Have a Champion of Champions competition for the Regional Leagues to raise the competition profile. The NCL Champions (if they wished) could apply to play in League 2 on semi-professional or amateur basis, any central funding could help them develop their ground (build a small covered standing area for example).
  4. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Falling gates in Rugby League

    Simple answer is no particular reason. my personal view is that League One rugby is only a fraction more professional that NCL top division, but a lot more expensive to attend, and the games in the NCL are usually quite entertaining and closely fought affairs. i have no interest in watching Town play the likes of West Wales, Coventry, Hemel etc in one sided games on the odd occasion I’ve fancied going to a game, I’ve had something else on my mates have no interest in RL these days other than the annual excursion to the Grand Final or international games I think the game would partially benefit from a new stadium as the facilities at all of Cumbrias stadiums are woefully out of date, but a new stadium doesn’t necessarily mean more supporters ....just ask Doncaster that said, I do want Town to be the county’s top RL side and I would be willing to increase my monthly subscription for Town Flyer etc provided I got something out of it in the form of a few match tickets to attend any home game of my choice throughout the season, or the option to watch live streaming or delayed highlights of home and away games
  5. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Falling gates in Rugby League

    Bradford have the right idea with live streaming, lots of footie clubs are adopting the same approach with subscriptions to watch away games on smart TV sets,tablets etc. like it or not, we live in a subscription era, and It’s fast becoming the ’norm’ amongst young people with cars, phones, music etc all on subscriptions. this is the way to go, it could be linked in with the Town Flyer with different levels of subscriptions available, from 4 or 6 games up to a full season to allow people to choose their own level of commitment. There’s also the possibility to upsell the subscriptions to increase the number of games each year as their interest gradually returns. its a lot easier to sell something at £3 a week that £150 in a one off payment. as several people have said on these forums, there’s plenty of latent interest in the club, but for whatever reason these people (me included) have no interest in attending games anymore, but interestingly, how many of these absent supporters pay each month by direct debit into the Town Flyers or other monthly draws? would I attend games occasionally if I had a choice of 4 or 6 prepaid tickets, well the answer is probably yes, especially if I could use one of my prepaid tickets to take a mate along to the game. monthly direct debits also help the club to plan financially as they know that money is regular income
  6. the whole set up from top (Super League) to bottom (Regional amateur leagues) needs a complete review. Superleague clubs should all have a reserve team of some description, and Championship and League 1 clubs should also have some form of reserve side, playing in an amateur competition against fellow pro clubs (something like the NCL). The League 1 clubs especially as development sides should all be forced to form their own community club as part of their structures with a caveat that they can only take players from certain areas up to the age of 16, so they don't devalue the local leagues, otherwise how else can you grow and develop the sport in new areas. We have to stop the expansion at all costs mentality and let clubs grow at their own speed
  7. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Under 19s/Academy/Reserves

    no local amateur club would support a move which would effectively see players they have coached in some cases from the age of 6/7 move to play for Town/Haven when they need every player they can get to fill 17 shirts on a Saturday. A lot of people involved in the amateur game couldn't care less if Town or Haven played their last game tomorrow, they have no interest in the semi-professional game! As we all acknowledge, some of the clubs below Super League are professional in name only and wouldn't exist at all without RFL handouts. I would rather see League 1 become a fully fledged development league, and in order to play in that league you need to be running your own youth teams with a view to developing and nurturing your own talent pool. There's no quick fix, teams need a 5-7 year plan at least and you need to start at the bottom with mini-mods - 6/7 year olds and work up the ladder to the local open age amateur comp with a long term plan to play in the NCL, or a Reserve competition purely for development sides. We have seen most League 1 clubs especially and some championship sides scraping around for players and in the professional game that's laughable and as unprofessional as you can get. Workington especially could in theory start a new amateur club tomorrow under the name of Workington Steelers or even Workington Town Amateurs RL as there is no amateur RL in the town of Workington. In order to protect Seaton and other local clubs, a caveat could be applied to any entry to stop them poaching players below open age level. If you build a club from within you are in some respects in charge of your own destiny - some of the better ran amateur clubs have 2 open age sides plus 200+ juniors signed on - so straight away you would see a difference for attendances for the pro side as well as the knock on effect of regular bar revenue etc
  8. Totally agree, it would made much more sense if the professional clubs worked with the amateurs to help develop coaches within the amateur clubs and also hold guest coaching sessions for the amateur youth teams at their own club. I've no objection at all if the pro clubs wanted to offer additional training one night per week to the better players as long as they are left with their parent club to develop their skills. There's also nothing wrong with these pro clubs taking the better players at the end of the season to play 3 or 4 matches against fellow professional clubs within their local area - almost a trial game / inter-town format
  9. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Keighley in trouble once again.

    You can’t run a league on sentiment which is what’s happened in rugby league over the last 20 years. Let’s be honest here, most of the lower league professional clubs are professional in name only and would have been bankrupt years ago without RFL subsidies. those clubs that own their own grounds have inherited stadiums which are woefully out of date and have little to no opportunities to raise non rugby related revenue which is vital to any sporting organisation. Whitehaven, Keighley and Barrow have to run a businesses and maintain stadiums on 14 home games a season, so putting that into context, could you imagine a High St shop only opening on 14 days a year and taking enough money over the counter to pay 25 staff, business rates, utility bills etc for 365 days! it just isn’t viable, and that unfortunately is the true state of RL in the 21st century. As someone else has rightly pointed out earlier in the post, some amateur clubs regularly pull in 500+ crowds for their home games, have vibrant social sections and develop their own players through their own youth sections. Their facilities have improved as their club has developed; sure they don’t have a grandstand, but do they need one at their level? as a sport we need to look at the non league football pyramid which allows clubs to develop at their own pace with the opportunity to pretty much go as far as they want within the game. Finances will ultimately dictate what level they will get to, but the dream is still there, that coupled with competitions like the FA Vase and Trophy give their players something to aspire to. RU outside of the top divisions is very similar with clubs having professional set ups which would be more than good enough for semi professional rugby league. we already have much of this structure in place, but the amateur game has been ignored and seen as a distraction by many within the confines of Red Hall. the game is at a cross roads, and I am in no doubt it will contract with at least 5 or 6 clubs going to the wall. brave decisions need to be taken, but I fear there isn’t anyone within the game capable of making these decisions
  10. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Barrow club statement

    I think it shows the need for modern stadia and with it the ability to raise revenue through non-rugby means. Craven Park is a great ground to watch a game of rugby but has no hospitality facilities and the changing facilities are a step back in time! Which begs the question, ehy does a town the size of Barrow need 2 stadiums? Would it not be better to combine resources and build a modern stadium with available office space or a hotel at one end of the ground to supplement income? The Barrow RL ground would be worth a fortune as real estate with its town centre location
  11. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Jam eaters takeover

    If the proposed takeover at Whitehaven is back on, then as a Haven fan I would be very concerned for the following reasons: Who in their right mind would take over a club losing money on a weekly basis with no way of generating non-rugby related revenue on a big enough scale to supplement their losses. Who would take over a club with no saleable assets in case it all goes horribly wrong? How are they going to fund the creation of an Academy and Reserve side when they can't afford a squad of 25 players? If Haven owned their ground, then I could 'sort of' see the logic in buying the club, but as they don't, there are no assets, and no bank will lend money without assets to secure against a loan, so this consortium must be cash rich which rings alarm bells with me! I wish the club and their supporters well, but at the same time I would be very worried
  12. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Jam eaters takeover

    ..........and people are still deluded enough to think there's enough support locally for 2 professional teams! You just have to look at the weekly attendances of Town and Haven to see how much hard core support each club has, but has anyone really looked into how many rugby league fans there are in the area who don't follow Town or Haven, but would maybe follow a new side? Same with sponsorship, both clubs struggling, but how many times have these sponsors been let down by both clubs over the years, .....and let's not even get on to both clubs relationships with their amateur neighbours!
  13. Death to the Rah Rah's

    League Restructure Discussion (Merged Threads)

    This is, and always has been more than just an argument between Super League and the remaining professional clubs. It is a game wide issue which will inherently affect the entire game from primary rugby upwards if the wrong decision is made. Some things you just can't dispute............ 1) The player pool of social/amateur players is reducing year on year, which in turn reduces the overall quality of players available to the professional game 2) The majority of our so called 'professional' clubs would be bankrupt without TV money, even more so in Championship and League 1 3) The RFL are in a constant battle with Super League clubs who are only interested in their own well being regardless of the irreversible damage it will do to the rest of the game 4) The constant 'moving of goalposts' in regards to promotion/relegation/super 8's etc. makes our game a laughing stock Someone at some point needs to total reanalyse the state of the game completely and come up with proposals to firstly steady the ship and secondly ways of showing growth. We all know that other sports are struggling with participation numbers, which is why the RFL should be working with other organisations to petition Sport England to help fund ways of getting adults back into team sports. The league structures need changed to give ambitious progressive clubs the chance to climb the league pyramid. Why shouldn't the likes of Siddal, Hunslet Parkside, Wath Brow be given the chance to play in League 1 if their facilities meet a minimum standards criteria. Equally, ALL clubs in League 1 should be classed as development clubs with junior 'amateur' sides from 12's through to open age playing against other semi-professional clubs to raise standards - with an NCL type competition for open age sides to run (ie reserve team rugby remodelled). The game needs change, fresh ideas and structure - and most importantly, everyone to pull together in the same direction for the good of the game. Sacrifices and concessions will have to be made, but if nothing is done soon, then I certainly feel the game will continue to falter
  14. in west Cumbria you can add Maryport and Broughton Red Rose and there’s another couple of clubs really struggling to get 17 players on the pitch on a weekly basis. Maryport and Broughton both have their own facilities with very good youth sections but interest at open age is at an all time low. Maryport in particular have an excellent set up which will be amongst the finest in the amateur game, so facilities has little influence in attracting players to the sport. ive said on another thread that the Community Boards role in amateur RL should be reassessed as they bring nothing to the sport, and the game has declined at a worrying rate since they took over the administration of the regionals from BARLA. There needs to be a new body set up to specifically look after the regionals, and someone needs employed by the RFL to look into the reasons why players have turned their backs on the sport. we all have our own ideas, but it’s time for hard facts, which means someone at the RFL actually earning their wages
  15. Death to the Rah Rah's

    Regional leagues 2018

    Most of the clubs in west Cumbria have good facilities with their own pitch and clubhouse. Ellenboroughs neighbours Maryport have a fantastic facility with large clubhouse, bar, function room, 4 changing rooms and a new 70m x 40m floodlit all weather - but just junior sides at present as they are another casualty of declining interest in playing the sport at open age level. wath brow, Egremont, Hensingham, Seaton, lowca and Distington have all benefitted from substantial lottery funding, and Cockermouth play from grassmoor sports club which they share with the RU club, also lottery funded. I don’t think the opportunity is there for clubs to source funding as they did in the old days, with sport England supporting community based projectsrather than individual clubs, which is a shame, as some of the clubs mentioned above will have had well over 400k each in funding to improve facilities