Featherstone offer Wakefield ground proposal

Featherstone Rovers have approached Wakefield Trinity about using the Big Fellas Stadium from 2018.

The Championship club confirmed they had approached their Super League neighbours after the Wakefield chairman, Michael Carter, confirmed the club would be leaving the Beaumont Legal Stadium at the end of the season.

Wakefield are being forced to leave their home of 122 years as it will not meet the new ‘minimum grounds standards’ policy that is set to be implemented in 2018.

Rovers general manager Davide Longo believes a temporary move to Featherstone could solve a host of issues currently facing the Wakefield club, who already use the Big Fellas Stadium as their training base.

“We completely understand the situation Wakefield find themselves in and would be more than willing to support them where we can,” said Longo.

“Informal conversations between ourselves and Wakefield have been had in recent weeks and, prior to last night’s announcement, we formally offered Trinity an opportunity to begin formal discussions regarding a potential, temporary ground-share agreement for 2018 and, if needs be, beyond.

“We believe Wakefield playing here at Featherstone would be the best possible fit for Wakefield supporters, given the fact our stadium is situated less than five miles from the Beaumont Legal Stadium.

“The Big Fellas Stadium is easily accessible for all and we would look to work with local bus companies to potentially add new service routes into Featherstone for Trinity supporters to make use of.

“From a playing point of view, we believe it would be a favourable move for Wakefield’s performance department, given the fact Trinity have been training here for some time now.

“I would imagine it would be highly beneficial for the club to have all of its departments working from the same facility and we are more than able to accommodate such a move.

“I think it goes without saying that our stadium meets minimum standards set by the Rugby Football League and we are constantly making improvements to ensure it continues to develop as a high-quality facility – fit for top-flight and even international rugby league.

“I for one sympathise a great deal with the Wakefield board of directors, staff, players and supporters, given the predicament they find themselves in.

“There are some real frustrations surfacing as the people of Wakefield continue in their fight for a new community stadium, in which Trinity would act as anchor tenants, to be constructed.

“While efforts to ensure its construction eventually goes ahead, we would be extremely welcoming towards Trinity.

“On behalf of Featherstone Rovers, and for the greater good of the game, we have formally moved to invite Wakefield to ply their trade here from as early as October.

“We hope to commence talks with Trinity officials in the weeks ahead and, should they go ahead, we hope to be able to help them come to a positive solution.”