Executive Board – mid-season update
When the Executive Board was formed towards the end of last season we were determined to implement the required changes over the next three years or so to forge our future as the leading Premiership club in Wales. This position has not changed, and work continues on the governance, financial and commercial strategies the club requires to ensure a prosperous and sustainable future both on and off the field.
As you will have seen, the first phase of the stadium refurbishment programme has been completed with cosmetic work on the main stand and other aspects, together with an upgrade of the main clubhouse and catering facilities.
The second phase of the refurbishment programme has commenced, with a planned major upgrade to our changing facilities and further hospitality facilities. As part of this work, the William Gibby Lounge has been closed to facilitate the upgrade to the changing facilities with the new Presidents Lounge being opened upstairs in the Grandstand.
In line with the planned new changing facilities, discussions are ongoing with the relevant parties to explore the possibility of Sardis Road becoming the home of Welsh women’s rugby as part of our longer-term vision of providing all-inclusive facilities for the club and wider community.
Whilst putting in place the structures and facilities that create a viable and sustainable future for our club is paramount, we fully appreciate there is a balance to be achieved between providing the facilities to attain this and protecting our heritage and history. This will continue to be at the forefront of our approach, and we will continue to put the interests of our team, sponsors, stakeholders and loyal supporters at the heart of our decision making.
As has been previously stated, Pontypridd RFC, the Premiership and the whole community game in Wales continues to face major structural and financial challenges within the ever-changing landscape that is Welsh rugby. The decline in gate receipts as a result of the reduction in home games this season in the Premiership along with the reduced funding from the WRU has severely impacted the revenue line. We continue to fight our corner.
We are very pleased that the cross-border competition with the Scottish Super 6 teams is now in place, and we hope that this will be developed further in the coming years. In addition to this, we have been exploring the possibility of arranging cross border fixtures with various countries’ teams to play on non-competition weekends. Unfortunately, whilst there has been a very positive response to this, it has not yet proved possible to organise logistically given the short lead time. Despite this, our efforts remain unabated.
In terms of further player development, we are in ongoing discussions with the Blues executive team to build a beneficial two-way relationship to strengthen the pathway and ensure potential talent is developed. We continue to believe that the Premiership clubs play a significant and vital role in developing players. We only have to look at some of the players in the current Welsh squad who honed their skills at the House of Pain.
A major coup for the club was the announcement of Neil Jenkins as Honorary President. We are in the process of organising an event to celebrate this, along with a series of other events of which more details will be released once finalised.
It is very important to again reiterate that we would not be able to do what we do without our dedicated band of volunteers who give their time week after week across many aspects of the club, many of whom who also work full or part-time, and to all these people we give our sincere thanks and appreciation.
As always, a big thanks to you our shareholders, sponsors, partners and our loyal supporters.
There are still many challenges ahead, and we are fully committed to doing everything we can to meet these head-on.
The Executive Board