Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Yorkie44

On the Road

Recommended Posts

With the news that Scarborough FC have just announced they have received funding for their Flamingo Land Stadium to increase capacity to just over 2,800. (link), it got me musing about games on the road and whether they would be beneficial.

Yes, I realise we are getting a brand-new community stadium which we really need to utilise and start getting good crowds (hopefully an average of 2,500-3,000 next year) and in my opinion try to sell out one game per year.

But I also feel we need to try and expand not only our fanbase but our playing pool throughout North Yorkshire. We have aspirations of being York’s premier sporting team which by default will probably make us North Yorkshire’s too (if we say Middlesbrough still isn’t in the county), and I feel we should try and represent that, with taking one game on the road against a not so well supported team.

There are a few other stadiums in North Yorkshire with an okay capacity, Harrogate Town’s Wetherby Road ground has a 3,800 capacity. Pickering Town have a 1,500 capacity. Tadcaster Albion a capacity of 2,000. Whitby’s Turnbull ground has a 3,500 capacity.

Of these listed above I only think an extended Scarborough, Harrogate and possibly Tadcaster would be of any worth. Pickering is too small and Whitby probably too far.

I feel we should take games to these places to help an existing or kick-start an amateur club there with the addition of gaining a few extra fans too.

If we want to become a solid Championship club and even dare I say it one day aspire to SL, I strongly believe we need to run an academy or reserves or whatever rugby league decides the way forward for juniors. We have in the past had brilliant success from this bringing through stars such as Greg Minikin, Harry Carter, Ed Smith (where is he now?), Kriss Brining, the Dents etc. and that was from let’s face it a sub standard set up for what I think our club should be aiming for. There is an abundance of talent in York with players such as Joe Porter and Matt Chilton coming from the amateur game, and I could name a fair few who have been at SL academies that when dropped were sadly lost to the game. Perhaps if they were at their home town (county) club they may have stayed in the game. If they didn’t quite make the grade they would be sent back to their original club to be monitored and encouraged, which James Ford is a big advocate of, to see if they develop anymore and if not, they go back to the amateur ranks a better playing giving back to the community game.

Scarborough for instance have lost their open age team this year and I am unaware if they are running any junior sides, this for me should be a concern for the Knights. One of our clubs’ best players in Brining is from the town and I know many players from the coast who have played for not only our previous academy but also for both Hull clubs as well, the Pirates should be a club we assist on getting back on their feet as I think there is a rich pool of players in Scarborough. There are also many fans the travel down the A165 to watch FC or KR when we should be trying to get them to travel down the 64 and what better way to show they are appreciated than give them a game.

Harrogate does not have an RL club but both it and Knaresborough have dabbled in the past and let us not forget Wetherby is 15 minutes down the road and they have a great club in the Bulldogs which produced Minikin possibly our most successfully developed player in recent times. Many fans travel down the road to watch the Rhinos too, perhaps a few could be swayed.

There are plenty of other areas in the county that are ripe for harvest too, Selby is a big one and again the community club there need a big helping hand, one of the best players in recent times in Gareth Ellis is from the area, imagine if we could have a player of his calibre for a few years.

Union is big in the county too and there are some very good teams with quality players to be ‘nabbed’ there too. I really think we should be trying to add to our player pool by helping existing teams to flourish and help kickstart some clubs in the surrounding towns.  

Yes, I know it costs money and I know it isn’t as easy as just building something and they will come but our new management team has shown we’re a now different beast and that it works hard and has the drive to make the Knights as big as we possibly can make it. Perhaps giving a helping hand to the rest of the county may help that. A little and good way of doing this could be by taking games on the road.

Scarborough

S.png.b209427ba921fbd3ebf91b16b941a37b.png

 

Harrogate

H.png.47e6dc672a300e973182b58225d5c289.png

 

Tadcaster

T.png.cc391159fb657a1e57bdf85a22d5864d.png

Whitby

W.png.58cf4b469cad7c872e645534a7dc63ba.png

 

Pickering

P.thumb.png.3266a62b9b995ce9447c8cbf9ad39aa6.png

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its something Yorkshire Cricket do each summer in Scarborough with real success. Lots of promotion and visibility in the town in the weeks leading up to the fixture, a huge weekend event, fish, chips & ice cream (or Betty's cream tea if we go to Harrogate). Lovely stuff all round!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, Gav Wilson said:

Its something Yorkshire Cricket do each summer in Scarborough with real success. Lots of promotion and visibility in the town in the weeks leading up to the fixture, a huge weekend event, fish, chips & ice cream (or Betty's cream tea if we go to Harrogate). Lovely stuff all round!

The Knights big day out, our very own Summer Bash in a much nicer town than Blackpool, if we go to Whitby ;) , I'm joking Scarbados is lovely too. Then our 'Posh Play-about' in Harrogate.

If other people are like me and love visiting new grounds to watch RL then it could get a good following if it is attainable and commercially viable, although there are benefits away from making money.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 minutes ago, DEANO said:

No no no and no

Tis' a good argument, the thoroughly outlined the pros and cons of the idea. I agree with your observations wholeheartedly.

  • Haha 2
  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For a number of years I have followed, Leeds (Yorkshire) Carnegie rugby union club. When they changed their name to Yorkshire, they decided to play their cup games 'on the road' in an effort to become Yorkshire's premier club and increase their fan base.  This  has failed spectacularly. Most of their fans don't go, they are fed up with the travelling,  (they even had to cancel a supporters coach from Headingley which only cost a pound, because only 3 people booked on it), and want the home games, not surprisingly played at home. Why give up that advantage. 

I'm also a Yorkshire CCC member and prefer Scarborough to Headingley, but county cricket has been played at Scarborough for  many years, and a lot of supporters who go there actually stay for 3 or 4 days to make it a break. It's also worth pointing out, that the County Cricket club would not play at Scarboro if some officials had their way, because they feel they are losing revenue, even though Scarborough Cricket Club actually pay Yorkshire a fee to stage the games.

One possibility maybe to take a Yorkshire Cup game to one of these venues to test the water, but I honestly feel we should get prospective supporters to come to us and enjoy our facilities.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great post and a good idea. I'm just in Scarborough at the moment and strangely enough earlier on was thinking it would be great to bring a game here.

I can understand the reservations, but with enough planning and joined up thinking I'd be confident in it being a success. IMO the Knights more than any other club in English RL have greater untapped support in their area, there are no professional football teams (other than City) in the county. 

It would be difficult deciding what kind of match to take on the road though - you don't want to be playing in the coast in winter so that rules out a friendly. Probably a game against a team with a smaller away following so we don't miss out on all the benefits a bigger team would bring. Someone like a Rochdale or Batley, even if it's the 1895 cup, could work. One match, promoted well, during the summer season in Whitby, Harrogate or Scarborough could be a winner. And if it's just 1 match, if it doesn't work a lesson learned and we move on.

One more point to make, with about 20 hours notice we took a challenge cup game to Featherstone in the March snow without any coach travel and still drew a crowd of 525. A match confirmed many months in advance, in warmer weather and a more touristy setting (sorry Fev!) has a hell of a lot of potential.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, HaxbyKnight said:

For a number of years I have followed, Leeds (Yorkshire) Carnegie rugby union club. When they changed their name to Yorkshire, they decided to play their cup games 'on the road' in an effort to become Yorkshire's premier club and increase their fan base.  This  has failed spectacularly. Most of their fans don't go, they are fed up with the travelling,  (they even had to cancel a supporters coach from Headingley which only cost a pound, because only 3 people booked on it), and want the home games, not surprisingly played at home. Why give up that advantage. 

I'm also a Yorkshire CCC member and prefer Scarborough to Headingley, but county cricket has been played at Scarborough for  many years, and a lot of supporters who go there actually stay for 3 or 4 days to make it a break. It's also worth pointing out, that the County Cricket club would not play at Scarboro if some officials had their way, because they feel they are losing revenue, even though Scarborough Cricket Club actually pay Yorkshire a fee to stage the games.

One possibility maybe to take a Yorkshire Cup game to one of these venues to test the water, but I honestly feel we should get prospective supporters to come to us and enjoy our facilities.

I see where you are coming from and agree to an extent, if you’re taking several games away from your home base then yes your fans will start to become disillusioned with the concept. I was thinking only one game a year as a Knights ‘Big Day Out’ to showcase us to the rest of North Yorkshire.  I don’t know where Carnegie were taking their games but am I right in saying there are other clubs in the same division, Doncaster and Rotherham, perhaps it was stepping on their fan’s toes, a bit like if we were to try and take Yorkshire and took a game to Batley, admittedly RL is more saturated in the county than RU. I’m talking about North Yorkshire though, where we’re the only professional rugby team in a county of near 1million people.

You say that county cricket has been played in Scarborough for many years, presumably there was a year one to start the tradition, also you mention many fans go and make a weekend of it, could this not be something Knights fans could do. Let’s face it we don’t really have many ‘events’ to go to, so this could be a big deal once a year, plus how many professional rugby games do the good people of Scarborough, Harrogate et al get to see live in their home town, it could bring a few out. Obviously this is all a bit of a pipe dream and a may not at all be feasible, your concerns are genuine and show things like this need to be approached with caution and may not work at all, but just because it hasn’t worked for one it doesn’t mean it won’t work for another. For me it’s more about tapping in to the vast potential that the North Riding has to offer us, we must have one of the biggest catchment areas in RL on our doorstep it'd be good to try and utilise it, but this way could be the wrong way there are lots of other ways of roping in the people of our beautiful county.  

Edited by Yorkie44

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Carnegie take their 3 B and I cup games on the road and over the years have used Wharfedale, Otley, Scarborough, York, Hull Ionians, Pontefract and Huddersfield YMCA, (was fun to go there), sorry. Lovely rugby grounds, but they made money from car parking, the bar etc, Carnegie lost out, and their home gates didn't improve either. They had already stood on Doncaster and Rotherhams toes by calling themselves Yorkshire. I also know the players were not too keen on playing home games on the road. that is another consideration.

Yorkshire CCC have a very big membership in N Yorkshire, and Cleveland, hence the good crowds there, and remember until relatively recently played at 7 different grounds to cater for the countywide membership. I love going there, but I think as a tourist destination for visiting fans, York is a much better option.

After all the struggles we have had to get the council onside and provide a ground for us to play on, we are eventually moving into a new stadium. In my opinion it does us no favours if we turn round and tell them we are going off to Scarbados or Taddy this week.

I agree we need to explore every avenue we can to promote the Knights and increase attendances. How feasible is it to do some research and marketing, in say Scarborough, and if there is any interest provide a subsidised coach, picking up in Malton, and getting them to York?

Edited by HaxbyKnight

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The knights are on the road every other week. I don’t see all the regular home support there. People will stop buying season tickets who can’t afford “away” home games and why give up home advantage 

  • Like 4

sometimes you have to take a step backwards to move forward

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
59 minutes ago, HaxbyKnight said:

Carnegie take their 3 B and I cup games on the road and over the years have used Wharfedale, Otley, Scarborough, York, Hull Ionians, Pontefract and Huddersfield YMCA, (was fun to go there), sorry. Lovely rugby grounds, but they made money from car parking, the bar etc, Carnegie lost out, and their home gates didn't improve either. They had already stood on Doncaster and Rotherhams toes by calling themselves Yorkshire. I also know the players were not too keen on playing home games on the road. that is another consideration.

Yorkshire CCC have a very big membership in N Yorkshire, and Cleveland, hence the good crowds there, and remember until relatively recently played at 7 different grounds to cater for the countywide membership. I love going there, but I think as a tourist destination for visiting fans, York is a much better option.

After all the struggles we have had to get the council onside and provide a ground for us to play on, we are eventually moving into a new stadium. In my opinion it does us no favours if we turn round and tell them we are going off to Scarbados or Taddy this week.

I agree we need to explore every avenue we can to promote the Knights and increase attendances. How feasible is it to do some research and marketing, in say Scarborough, and if there is any interest provide a subsidised coach, picking up in Malton, and getting them to York?

Regarding Carnegie they seem to be taking a lot of home games away from their home ground even if they are cup games, not just one a year. Also they seem to be taking them to areas that already have fairly successful union set ups, and to be fair probably aren't far off Carnegie anyway, and also don't need a leg up.

Yorkshire Cricket is the county wide team that's at a guess why they have so many members in North Yorkshire, I'm suggesting it may be benificial for Knights to explore been a team for North Yorkshire, or at least ways to go about that.

The council point I agree is a massive one, yes I guess they won't be happy at all after the hole fiasco of the Stadium saga, but I'm sure they wouldn't be to averse to a one off game away from the city, if it helps build the club and most of all makes the wider area aware of the Knights. 

25 minutes ago, DEANO said:

The knights are on the road every other week. I don’t see all the regular home support there. People will stop buying season tickets who can’t afford “away” home games and why give up home advantage 

True, but as non of them are an event that can be built up on our behalf, and with all due respect other than Toronto, Toulouse and possibly Cumbrian teams not places you would likely ever want to go to. To lose one game a year from your season ticket because your club are trying to build their brand to a wider audience and get upset about it in my opinion is very selfish, but again that is my view and I believe I look at the wider picture, although I concede it may be entirely wrong. Although the way I see it the sporting landscape is changing rapidly and clubs have to operate differently to be relevant, which the Knights do well anyway.

 

 

 

This was just an observation of Scarborough extending their ground and I had a little lightbulb moment on how it could benefit the York and enable us to expand our roots across the North of Yorkshire. I have enjoyed the discussion with Haxby and Deano as it definitely shows it's not necessarily the good idea I thought it was, but anything that gets us talking about RL and the Knights is good, isn't it? 

As an aside, we organised a North Yorkshire Cup last year with 5 sides in it which I felt was pretty successful, with the final held at Knaresborough between the Lokos and NEAB A and that attracted a fairly healthy crowd, maybe 100-150, now that could have been all families of the players but I'd be surprised if it was. It was a very entertaining game too so hopefully it inspired some Knaresboroughnians into the sport.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to clear, the Carnegie issue, it is 3 games per season.

It's good to promote the sport, and the Knights in any way we can. I do not think it is a bad idea, but, from my experience it does not necessarily reap the desired reward. I have to admit, I have a Knights season ticket, and I buy it to watch York play their home games in York. Playing on your own ground should give a you an advantage, viz., Batley's slope, Dewsbury's narrow pitch, and for me playing a home game on a neutral ground negates that. 

Edited by HaxbyKnight

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are just starting to build our fan base and to take it to Scarborough or any where else would be a non starter for me as been a season ticket holder i have paid to watch York in York and not outside the City.Don't mind watching York in Scarborough if the Knights were the away team.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suppose it just goes to show you can't cater for all, what one finds an attractive proposition another may scoff at. It must be very difficult to run a club and please all but the Knights seem to do it well. 

I really don't think home advantage is that much of a thing, unless you have a quirk to your ground like you've mentioned. Other than that it's 13 v 13 on a rectangle pitch.

Still if something like this ever came about (not likely I know) I would support it fully, but this wasn't really about crowds/supporters it was more about capturing North Yorkshire and help opening up a larger playing pool.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not scoffing at all Yorkie. There is no such thing as a bad idea, and maybe your suggestion will lead to another incentive to promote the Knights, if this one doesn't take off. It's good to have a reasonable debate, even if opinions differ.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, HaxbyKnight said:

I'm not scoffing at all Yorkie. There is no such thing as a bad idea, and maybe your suggestion will lead to another incentive to promote the Knights, if this one doesn't take off. It's good to have a reasonable debate, even if opinions differ.

Oh no, I know you aren't. Apologies it wasn't meant to be a derogatory term, just trying to put a point across. Yes I agree you brought up a lot of things to think about (like I've got any input at all) and there is nothing like a healthy debate to through up ideas, some may good, some bad and some indifferent.

Anything that progresses the Knights is a good thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting idea, 

I've been to tad footy a few times and I'd say that photo is v flattering, its a very tiny ground. So that's non starter for me.

Scarbroughites didn't take much notice of Scarborough pirates for their brief existence, and harrogate is v union. Whitby is miles from anywhere. Pickering would be fun its a nice ground to visit.

For me tho if we r havin an away day it should b somewhere big, so why not look at the first place the OP mentioned but then dismissed....the riverside stadium Middlesbrough , (boro is in yorkshire even if not in n yorks!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The North Yorkshire Cup played at Knaresborough RUFC which is no where near the town centre I may add was a great day out, I came over from Harrogate and thoroughly enjoyed the concept and hope it is repeated again this year! I think the Scarborough idea is a great one, the day of the fixture and kick off time would have to be well thought through. Either way fully agreed we need to assist Scarborough Rugby League, if the first team playing there isnt an option could that be where the Linked Uni teams play their games or a Varsity style competition York Uni/Uni or St Johns etc or a base for a reserve team playing the Yorkshire leagues????

I am the guy (Stu Morris - Twitter @HarrogateKnigh1)   behind setting up a Harrogate Knights Supporters Group along with Richard White we have plans for a regular meetings and have good progress so far the first one is on 11th March with Ben Cockayne as our 1st meeting guest. We have a few aims 1. To bring together York City Knights Fans in Harrogate similiar to Harrogate Minstermen. 2. To try and bring more supporters to York City Knights we are trying to tap into the 2nd club market too as alot of Rugby League fans have clubs already but not many play on Sundays at 3pm !

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...