Oldham RLFC

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Season-ticket deadline extended to January 11

OLDHAM RLFC wishes to emphasise how crucially important it is for the club’s well-being that fans rally round and buy season tickets for the 2019 season.

Many of you have done so already and we thank you for that, and appreciate your backing. We really do hope, however, that more of you will follow suit.

WITH THAT IN MIND, THE DEADLINE FOR BUYING AT DISCOUNTED PRICES HAS BEEN EXTENDED UNTIL FRIDAY, JANUARY 11, TWO DAYS BEFORE OUR FIRST PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY AT BARROW.

We fully appreciate that this is an expensive time of year for everyone, but it would truly be a massive help if more of those supporters who can afford would consider paying up front to come to the club’s assistance and to take advantage of the offers that are built into season-ticket pricing.

The facility to spread payments by instalments is closed, but otherwise fans now have until 3pm on Friday, January 11 to buy by post or in person at the club’s office inside the Vestacare Stadium and until midnight on January 11 to buy online by debit or credit card via the Roughyeds payments site.

From now until the festive and New Year seasons are over, office opening times are as follows:

  • Monday, December 17, 10am to 3pm
  • Tuesday, December 18, 4pm to 6.30pm
  • Wednesday, December 19, 10am to 3pm
  • Friday, December 21, 10am to 3pm

Closed then over Christmas and New Year before re-opening as follows:

  • Wednesday, January 2, 10am to 3pm
  • Thursday, January 3, 10am to 3pm
  • Friday, Jan 4, 10am to 3pm
  • Monday, January 7, 10am to 3pm
  • Wednesday, January 9, 10am to 3pm
  • Friday, January 11, 10am to 3pm

To contact the office between these times ring 07904 898177.

Season ticket prices:

Standing: adults £126, concessions £108, under-16s £15
Sitting: adults £144, concessions £126, under-16s £40.

To buy by post include cheque made payable to ORLFC and send to: Oldham RLFC, Vestacare Stadium, Whitebank Road, Limehurst Village, Oldham OL8 3JH.

The club is doing all in its power, despite facing severe financial restraints (caused mainly by proposed changes to central funding and a reduction in the number of league games in 2019), to build a good squad for next season, as head coach Scott Naylor underlined so positively at the recent Open Forum for supporters at the Vestacare Stadium.

Currently, 22 players are signed-on for next season, including new recruits Ben Calland, Richie Hawkyard, Aaron Jones-Bishop, Anthony Bowman, Jamie Greenwood, Scott Law and Emmerson Whittel plus Danny Grimshaw, who is back after a season away.

Scott told fans that other additions are in the pipeline and that he already has a squad that he believes will be stronger and better than last year’s group and certainly a lot more experienced.

He also looked forward with great anticipation to competing in the new 1895 Cup which, he said, would be all about getting to Wembley, unlike the Challenge Cup which, realistically for a club of Oldham’s current standing, was more about getting a good draw and earning some money.

Cup games, admittedly, are not covered by season tickets but the point we are making is this: There IS a lot to look forward to in 2019, not least a realistic opportunity to win promotion with a new-look squad that will have to fight tooth and nail against the other anticipated front-runners for the two promotion spots, possibly headed by big-spending Newcastle Thunder, who come to the Vestacare Stadium for our fourth and final pre-season warm-up game on Sunday, February 3.

That, and the Law Cup game with Rochdale Hornets at home on Sunday, January 20 are key dates for your diary as we look ahead to the start of the new campaign.

Off the field, we are hoping to recruit more volunteers to enable us to reach out and engage more with schools and community clubs and to look at ways and means of increasing our fan base and involving a lot more younger supporters with the help of our fantastic mascot Roary, whom we believe is one of the best in the business.

The fans who attended the forum were given an insight into what’s going on behind the scenes and left for home, we feel sure, with optimism about next season and, even more importantly, an upbeat view of how the club intends to face up to and confront head-on the many severe challenges that lie ahead.

These are not merely applicable to our club but to all clubs at our level.

We CAN surmount these hurdles, as Julie Collins explained so professionally with the aid of her power-point slides at the forum, but we can only do it with YOUR help and YOUR loyal backing.

What the future holds for the professional arm of rugby league in Oldham, will be determined to a large degree by how much support we can muster among the town’s not inconsiderable rugby league community.

We have to continue to reach out to that community and we intend to do so, but more immediately we need our great and ever-loyal diehards to give the club a massive lift with the sale of season tickets.

Yes, you pay up front and you save the equivalent of one match’s turnstile price as well as receiving a newly-designed club scarf which would itself retail at £10, thus saving you a total of £24. With only ten home league games there isn’t much leeway but we’ve done the best we can, always with the club’s best interests in mind.

We understand that you might have to miss more than one match anyway because of holidays and other family commitments.

Purely on a mathematical basis you might think a season ticket isn’t for you. But we are not talking maths here . . . we are talking of the club we all love and of its future.

Various clubs are, and in the recent past have been, firing distress signals and we have first-hand knowledge, have we not, of how easily a club can be here one day and gone the next.

As pubs disappear overnight, local newspapers continue to fail, High Streets crumble under the pressures of online shopping and every time you switch on the TV you are bombarded with appeals for help from some charity or another, we live in a changing world in which we have to fight like mad to keep hold of the things that we hold dear.

Rugby League is fighting such a battle right now. Closer to home, so is Oldham RLFC.

A key part of that battle concerns how many season tickets we can sell between now and the new cut-off point, Friday, January 11, 2019.

We’ve heard it said that fans should be given until nearer the start of the season to get the best discounts so we’ve listened to that viewpoint and acted accordingly.

We need the income NOW, and over the course of the next few weeks, because we’re signing players, building a squad and still having to meet lots of continuing overheads without any income from match attendances and the like.

Not all our fans can afford to buy season tickets. We know that and we seriously value the support of those who pay at the turnstile, perhaps sacrificing something else in order to do that. You are our lifeblood, our heart-beat if you like.

But for those who can afford a season ticket without breaking the bank please consider renewing or, if you haven’t gone down that route previously, please consider doing it now for the benefit of the club and the sport that means so much to you.

At risk of nicking the late, great John F Kennedy’s thought process and his famous line, think not of what the club can do for you, but what you can do for the club.

Please remember that deadline . . . January 11, 2019.

THE CLUB SENDS ITS BEST WISHES TO YOU ALL FOR A VERY HAPPY AND PEACEFUL CHRISTMAS, FOLLOWED BY AN EQUALLY HAPPY AND HEALTHY NEW YEAR.

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AS you all know from your own experiences these are tough times for everybody, but we believe you will agree that OLDHAM RLFC is taking massive inspiration from the fabulous NHS and other key workers in tackling Covid head-on, while looking forward positively to the 2021 season and better times ahead thanks to the outstanding work now being done to get people vaccinated as quickly as possible.

Nevertheless, we have to face facts and be realistic enough to accept that the club urgently needs every pound that is currently coming in from whatever source. One of those sources is our Club Cash lottery and we would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who support us on this. A lot of you who used to pay our collectors on the doorstep have responded to our suggestions on how to pay by different methods and we are extremely grateful for that. Thanks again. You will never know how much difference your contributions make.

Alas, our income from the lottery has dropped by more than 50 per cent over the course of the pandemic and that would be a huge blow financially at any time let alone a time of unprecedented hardship because of the pandemic. It really is a situation we seriously need to address.

With that in mind the prize fund for the duration of the latest national lockdown will be temporarily reduced from February 10.

You will still be able to win a £1,000 first prize, plus £100, £50, £25 and ten £10 prizes every week, while continuing to provide vital support for the club and it will only cost you £1 a week. You can’t get a decent coffee for that, but the difference it makes to the club when multiplied a few times over and then multiplied again by 52 – the number of weeks in the financial year – is of major significance.

If you can help us at all — for £1 a week — it would be hugely appreciated by everyone with Oldham RL Club at heart. The prize structure still represents good value for money for an outlay of £1.

To those who are already members and help us accordingly, we very much hope to retain your support at this extremely difficult time.

Should you wish to play but don’t, due to the pausing of cash collection rounds, we have other options available, which you can discuss with our lottery administrator, John McAndrew on 07980129541 or from the club on 07904 898177.

Alternatively, you can send an email to: mcandrewj@aol.com or to: enquiries@roughyeds.co.uk

The prize fund will be increased back to previous levels as soon as latest lockdowns are released. Please watch our website and social media platforms for further announcements.

Finally, if you want more information about the lottery or you wish to discuss your membership please contact one of the numbers given above.

A huge thank-you to you all.

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