Viability of National RL Museum confirmed

MJ Black

The new National Rugby League Museum is likely to welcome in excess of 35,000 visitors per year when it opens its doors in 2020.

Research conducted on behalf of Rugby League Cares has reaffirmed the need for a museum telling the compelling story of a sport which remains at the very heart of the communities in which it is based.

The museum will be housed within the Grade 1-listed Bradford City Hall and will feature interactive displays and state-of-the-art galleries detailing the history of Rugby League.

A report commissioned by RL Cares from the nationally-recognised visitor forecasting experts Fourth Street demonstrates that the museum project is both viable and sustainable, largely because of the nature of its subject and prestigious location.

In conducting their report, Fourth Street assessed the tourism industry in the local area, understanding the profiles and demographics of those who live within a 30, 60 and 90-minute radius of the museum.

The company also researched the nature of the potential audience, including schools, families and community groups, to conclude that the museum can expect to welcome 35,000 paying visitors every year.

Brigid Power, the Heritage Manager for RL Cares, said: “We are delighted with the findings of the report submitted by Fourth Street which confirms what we knew all along – that there is a huge appetite for a National Rugby League Museum, both from the sport’s fans and the wider public.

“Rugby League has a great story to tell and this report means we can go forward with confidence in our plans to create a world class facility that will be the envy of other sport.”

The location of the National Rugby League Museum in Bradford, a city which already hosts the award-winning National Science and Media Museum and the UNESCO World Heritage Site at Saltaire, is central to its forecasted popularity.

Bradford Council leader, Coun Susan Hinchcliffe, added: “We’re all really looking forward to the National Rugby League Museum opening in Bradford City Hall in 2020.

“This latest study just shows the appetite for the museum. It’s a sport with a strong history and the plans for the museum highlight just how exciting this investment is going to be.”

RL Cares is still asking fans to outline what they would like the museum to do by completing this special online survey.