We are delighted to announce that TRUFC 1st XV will be competing in the Lancashire Cheshire Division 1 for the 2018/19 season as part of a new RFU Lancashire and Cheshire League set up for levels 7, 8 and 9.
TRUFC Chairman Hugh Patterson said: “The RFU Northern divisional restructure following the Lancashire club’s breakaway has been a turbulent and time consuming process. However, happily, common sense has prevailed and we now have a workable league programme for next season. Tarleton and it’s near neighbours in the former North Lancashire and Cumbria league (notably Bolton and Fleetwood), who chose to remain within the RFU Championship, have secured a hard won victory off the field of play. Our players now have a formidable but exciting challenge ahead on the field of play.”
The restructure was a result of a large number of ‘breakaway’ clubs moving away from the RFU and into the Lancs County RU Leagues – leaving only TRUFC, Bolton RUFC and Fleetwood RUFC within the NLC.
The RFU restructured NLC league included teams from Cheshire and South Lancs but would mean seven away trips to Cumbria – with player availability and financial implications.
As a result, a proposal to North DOC was made by a number of clubs to form a Lancs and Cheshire league. This was initially turned down with potential implications that some of the remaining Lancashire teams would have no option but to resign from the RFU Leagues and enter the Lancs County RU Leagues. This again would result in even more away trips to Cumbria so an appeal was lodged with the RFU Competitions Board.
The RFU Competitions Board ruled that the original proposal put before the North DOC should stand as a one-year solution.
Head Coach Steve Gough said “It’s going to be incredibly tough league probably tougher than NLC. Obviously less travel north makes life a bit easier for the boys. Really looking forward to playing new teams and challenge ourselves to play our brand of rugby”.
The new league structure has been well received by all the clubs involved and will see our 1st XV take on some new foes as well as competing in some highly anticipated local derbies throughout the season.