Friday, August 7, 2015

News: Council backs Titans in search for new home

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Rotherham Council is trying to help Rotherham Titans, the borough's rugby union club, find a new home as they are forced to play their opening Championship fixture on local playing fields.

The club, who ended last season in the playoffs to reach English Rugby's Premiership again, have encountered difficulties with the landlords of their Clifton Lane ground, the Rotherham Athletic Company, and ground sharing Rotherham Town cricket club. Each year the rugby and cricket playing seasons overlap, meaning the Titans cannot use the Clifton Lane ground for the opening and closing matches of the season.

In previous years the team has been able to play their first match away from home. That has not been allowed by the governing body this year because of the demand for pitches created by the Rugby World Cup in London.

Rotherham Council has agreed that the Titans can use the Rotherham Phoenix Rugby Club site at nearby Herringthorpe playing fields for the season's opening game on Sunday September 6.

Rotherham Phoenix secured a lease of around seven acres of the council-owned fields which enabled them to construct a two metre high boundary fence around rugby pitches. Planning permission for floodlights was obtained in October 2012.

This week, the venue hosted the prestigious Webb Ellis Trophy that will be presented to the winners of the Rugby World Cup at Twickenham in October.

Karl Battersby, strategic director for Environment and Development Services for Rotherham Council, emphasised that this will be a "one-off" arrangement. He added: "We appreciate the concerns of local residents, but the Titans have only been given permission to play this one individual match because of the difficult situation the Titans find themselves in at their Clifton Lane ground.

"This will be a one-off event and is not for free as the Titans are leasing the pitch at a commercial rate. The decision has been made in the spirit of supporting our local successful professional rugby team, balanced against significant concerns by local residents.

"The authority is trying to do its best for Rotherham as a whole and is also trying to help Titans find a new home, which will give them more stability and a long-term future in the town."

Nick Cragg and Martin Jenkinson announced in May that they would like to step back from their custodianship of Rotherham Titans, and are inviting interested parties and individuals to come forward and take them to the next level.

Rotherham Titans website

Images: Rotherham Titans / twitter

1 comments:

JOHN BINTCLIFFE August 8, 2015 at 1:37 PM  

WHY NOT DEVELOP HERRINGTHORPE STADIUM. TITANS CAN THEN LOOK AFTER AND MAINTAIN FOR ALL SPORTS TO USE.TOO MANY PEOPLE SAYING YOU CANT DO THIS CANT DO THAT.COME ON ROTHERHAM LETS MOVE FORWARD OR LOOSE FOR GOOD.

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