Tuesday night saw a well attended fans forum at The Tetley’s Stadium, where Chairman Mark Sawyer and Head Coach Lee Greenwood answered questions on a number of topics.
Mark Sawyer kicked off the evening by discussing the stadium deal with Bradford Bulls, which has recently been announced.
Bradford have initially been given permission by the RFL for 12 months to play their home games at The Tetley’s Stadium. The Bulls are currently in special measures, but this does not affect the stadium share. Outside the top flight Mark stated that only three or four clubs have never been in special measures, two of these being Dewsbury and Batley.
Mark said that rugby league will be poorer if Bradford go out of business and if Dewsbury can help this benefits both parties.
Dewsbury currently stand with a lower budget for next season this is due to a number of factors including finishing in a lower league position last season. However, this is where the deal with Bradford will come into play and help the club in a number of areas. The Bulls are paying a fee for each game played at the stadium and then there will be revenue for the Rams from bar and food sales and also the car park.
Concerns were raised by supporters around the payment of funds by the Bulls. However Mark squashed these fears.
There will be no increases to the stadium capacity. The only change in the stadium layout will be that Bradford are erecting a large tent behind the South Stand to accommodate more bars for their games.
Mark is positive going into next season, and explained how the funds coming into the club from Bradford will be a massive help and will make a big difference.
He says that every possible penny available is put into the player budget. He will not allow the club to get into financial difficulty while he is the Chairman of the club and will not spend unsustainable amounts of money on players.
The OurLeague app, created by the RFL, is contributing to the amount of central funding each club receives. The more sign up’s by supporters, who select Dewsbury Rams as their team, mean that the club will receive more money from the RFL.
There are two friendlies already agreed for the coming season, one of these is the traditional Batley Bulldogs Boxing Day game and one has been organised against Bradford Bulls with details to be announced in due course.
Head Coach Lee Greenwood spoke about the season which has just come to an end and his thoughts going into pre-season.
He announced the signing of Chris Annakin, who has joined on a two-year deal from Wakefield Trinity. The forward was on loan with the Rams at the start of the season and is looking forward to playing for his hometown club.
More signings are to be announced over the coming weeks and Lee says he will be signing players to play in their natural positions.
He is trying to create a positive attitude at the club throughout the playing squad and the club as a whole. Games that were lost by 1 or 2 points this season need to be turned into wins through a more positive attitude on the field. This will in turn push the team up the table.
Once again we’d like to thank everyone who turned up to the fans forum. We can’t wait for the new season to come around.