RFL to discuss summer switch plan

The RFL will propose at the next Community Board meeting on April 30 that a formal period of consultation is entered into regarding a possible switch of the playing season for the community game.

The final working group meeting which involved a cross section of the community game took place at the George Hotel on Wednesday April 14 and there was clear evidence of support for a possible change and a desire to continue the consultation.

David Gent, RFL Director of Participation and Strategic Partnerships said: “The working group meetings have seen a lot of open debate on the structure of the community game season at both Junior and Open Age level and there is certainly an appetite for further discussions.

“It is essential that we hear the views of the players about when they would like to play and the RFL will propose to the Community Board meeting on April 30 that we conduct a formal period of consultation throughout the game.

“At the end of this process there will be a well researched recommendation which will go forward to the clubs and leagues, however it will remain ultimately a decision for those groups.”

Over the last two months The RFL has held a series of meetings with key organisations and leagues across the community game to gauge opinions on the problems caused by the poor weather experienced during the winter months.

This process was initiated in response to concerns and requests from the community game.

These working group meetings have been attended by league and club representatives as well as representatives from the BARLA Board of Management.

Delegates from Open Age and Junior clubs and leagues were invited to the discussions which were conducted with a completely open format and were designed to gather a selection of views and opinions to be debated.

Options discussed included moving the community game season to March – November, keeping the season as it is at present or introducing a split season which would include a break for the Winter months.

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