RFL submit planning application for new Manchester facility

The RFL have applied to Manchester City Council for planning permission to create “a new skills, education and training facility” near the Etihad Campus.

The governing body propose to use land off Grey Mare Lane, in the Beswick area of the city, as the site for a facility that would be used by elite and community players, coaches and match officials, as well as young people and adults from the local area.

Plans include a two-storey building alongside the existing grass pitch, plus a small stand which would serve as an education and training base.

The RFL, who will move their national base from Salford Quays to the Etihad Campus later this year, say this will be the first and primary facility for their “OuRLeague Life” project, which will involve a series of learning and development hubs across the north of England and potentially nationwide.

They propose to offer education, work and employability courses as well as professional Rugby League and sport-related education and development programmes.

“For 125 years Rugby League has brought a huge range of social and economic benefits to communities in the north of England and beyond,” said RFL project lead Tony Sutton.

“It is a sport with a massive positive social impact – and now we want to make an impact in east Manchester.

“OuRLeague Life is an exciting concept which we hope will become a local focal point for adult education, training and skills, and a catalyst for driving up social mobility through sport.

“As well as offering a new facility for people in east Manchester, this will be a key educational facility for all the England Rugby League squads such as our Men’s, Wheelchair and Women’s teams.”