Bradford considering three alternative home grounds to Odsal

James Gordon

Bradford will next week decide if they are to move from Odsal, with three options for the club’s future.

Chairman Andrew Chalmers has identified the three options as a result of his ongoing frustration at the running costs of Odsal, home of the Bulls since 1934.

A ground-share at Championship rivals Dewsbury has been negotiated, if no suitable alternative is found in Bradford.

Their two options in Bradford are at Valley Parade, home of Bradford City football club, and Horsfall Stadium, home of non-league football club Bradford Park Avenue.

Valley Parade meets RFL standards, but it wouldn’t be available until 2021 with an estimate in the range of £1m to ensure the pitch can handle football and rugby league.

The other option is the 3,500-capacity Horsfall Stadium, which would require investment to accommodate the requirements of the Bulls in terms of infrastructure.

Writing in the Telegraph & Argus, Chalmers said: “We are in the middle of completing due diligence, which includes the cost of relocation and a cost for the additional infrastructure. We will keep everyone informed on this option.

“I would certainly see Horsfall Stadium as only a short-term option, assuming it is economically viable. Fortunately, as we do with Dewsbury, we have an excellent relationship with the owner Gareth and our two clubs have worked together in the off-field and back office areas for the last 18 months.

“This option also requires approval from the RFL for relocation, which we believe would be granted, providing the RFL’s minimum standards are met.

“Bear in mind that this process is all part of a journey to resolve the long term location of the Bradford Bulls, assuming a deal incorporating economic occupancy at Odsal cannot be reached.

“Our focus is the long term economic sustainability of the club in Bradford of course. I am comfortable that our deadline of August 15 will be achievable for an announcement, and that a new dawn will be upon us.”

The Bulls played two seasons at Valley Parade, in 2001 and 2002, while Odsal was redeveloped.