We hope this message finds you all well in these difficult and unprecedented times.
Covid-19 of course goes way beyond sport and first of all we cannot stress enough that it is hugely important that we all follow Government guidelines (official government guidance) to help halt the spread of, and ultimately nullify, the virus. We encourage everyone to take the utmost care of themselves, relatives, friends and neighbours and hopefully we can all come through this together, stronger.
As you will have seen in the media all Rugby League clubs have been involved in discussions with the RFL over the last few days around the impact of the Covid-19 virus on the sport. At the moment the sport is suspended for the next two weeks and the earliest we can return would be in our home fixture against Coventry on Sunday 5 April.
However, as you will be aware, the position is constantly moving and we will keep you advised as to whether the current league suspension needs to be extended further. We have also, along with all other clubs, been liaising closely with the RFL on our financial position as they continue national discussions on behalf of the sport with the Department of Culture, Media and Sports (DMCS).
We would like to take this opportunity to thank the RFL for their terrific efforts in this regard and for their open, consultative and supportive approach with all clubs.
The Board have also met to consider the club’s position and this note is to update you as best we can.
In terms of the club the impacts so far have been:
We have suspended training since Monday. We intend to restart next week dependant on clarification from the RFL. In the meantime all of the players have been given their own personal training plans to maintain fitness levels.
The Stadium complex, in line with other council-owned facilities, has been closed to the public until further notice.
We have had to cancel our Red Ladder Theatre production of `Smile Club’.
We have suspended the Foundations Community Development programme until further notice.
Our Friday-morning `Memories Club’ is suspended until further notice.
At this stage we are pleased to confirm that we have no one at the club diagnosed with the virus.
In addition, as you’d expect, we have undertaken further financial forecasts to assure our ability to remain solvent throughout any sustained period of League suspension. We will continue to refresh these as and when the position changes. In this regard we are no different to other clubs and it’s important to recognise that this is a very serious and precarious position for the whole sport. We have worked hard over the last few months and with fantastic support from our fans the club is in a much stronger position to handle this problem than would have been the case before Christmas.
However, throughout this period of uncertainty for us all it’s important that, where it remains affordable, everyone continues to make their membership payments. Obviously if we could persuade others to support our cause that would be fantastic too; above all, though, everyone needs to look after themselves financially in the first instance.
Season tickets will, of course, remain valid for all rearranged League fixtures and hopefully we will all be back together at South Leeds Stadium soon.
In the meantime we will issue further updates as and when we are in a position to do so.