Rochdale RUFC asks for public support ahead of centenary year with launch of recovery fund

Date published: 30 March 2021

Rochdale Rugby Union Football Club (RUFC) has launched a crowdfunding page to help the club bounce back from the effects of Covid-19.

The Crowdfunder - Rochdale Rugby Recovery Fund – aims to recover, rebuild, recruit, refresh and return the local club to the ‘happy place it has been for the last 100 years’.

An amateur community club for everyone from 6 to 106, men and women, Rochdale RUFC ‘provide a friendly, safe, and welcoming environment for every member and guest’.

Whilst the 2019-2020 season was cut short, it is hoped that the 2021 season and a milestone anniversary will bring happier times and possibly greater things for the local sports club – as it celebrates its centenary.

The club is already working to put together a programme of suitable, socially distanced, celebratory events for the centenary year celebrations in September. However, before all that, there is much work to be done in regard to reopening the club.

Chairman of Rochdale RUFC, Iain Coates said: “Sadly, Covid-19 has taken a heavy toll on the club’s financial health. Closures during the lockdowns of the past twelve months have cost the club dear. Normal income streams have completely dried up. It is no exaggeration to say that lost income runs to six figures.

“Whilst mothballing the club, prudent financial management and timely applications for grant support have helped us, the club has had no ‘normal’ income for more than a year and we have had to eat into reserves.

“Put simply, the cupboard is now bare.

“For that reason, the club has launched the recovery fund.”

The purpose of the Rochdale Rugby Recovery Fund is to:

  • Recover after the Covid-19 pandemic and make good the financial damage done to the health of the club.
  • Rebuild our club membership so badly affected by the pandemic.
  • Recruit new club users, members and supporters.
  • Refresh the rugby and local community culture and spirit within the club.
  • Return the club to the happy place it has been for the last 100 years and prepare it for the next.

“In doing so, we sincerely hope that perhaps we can spread a little more happiness with our centenary celebrations,” Mr Coates continued.

“Covid-19 restrictions and RFU guidelines permitting, we aim to re-open the club, and look to as normal a pre-season as possible, before kicking off our centenary year in style at the beginning of September. This is a very significant milestone by any standard.

“I have been amazed to see that the club’s supporters have already and very generously donated more than £3,750 towards drinks, hospitality, and sponsorship packages for the coming season.

“However, with your help and the help of Rochdale RUFC’s many friends we can drive through our target and ensure we are rugby ready for a bright and happy future.

“Please help in any way you can.”

You can donate to Rochdale Rugby Recovery Fund here:

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