RFL backs Bulls relocation – but only for one year

The RFL Board of Directors has conditionally approved an application from Bradford Bulls to play home matches at Dewsbury’s Tetley’s Stadium in 2020.

But the RFL’s approval is not wholehearted, as a statement issued by the governing body makes clear, and the club will remain in special measures, which mean that it is unable to sign new players.

“This permission has been granted reluctantly and on the basis that the club’s intention is to return to Bradford in the near future,” said the RFL statement.

“On the evidence so far submitted, the club’s plans for this return lack credibility and therefore the approval is only for the 2020 season.

“The RFL Board feel that the information provided so far in relation to the move to Dewsbury is incomplete and therefore it is a condition that the club provide further financial information on the impact of the move. Until this is provided to the satisfaction of the RFL the club will remain in special measures and is not permitted to sign players.

“Based on the information received the RFL feel that this decision made by the Bradford Bulls directors  is a poor one; however ultimately the Board of that club is responsible for determining what is in the best interests of Bradford Bulls.

“The actions taken by the club leave little alternative but to grant this request in order to avoid disruption to trading, but only on a time limited basis which will allow space for a more comprehensive review.

“As the Bulls have vacated Odsal, the RFL will in due course consider all options for the site.”