Tuesday, 19 April 2011

A letter from Nick Blofeld - support rugby at The Rec

Dear Supporter,
Support progress – keep rugby at the Rec

We are one of the oldest and most successful clubs in the country and are proud to count you among our many supporters. Our heritage and great record still makes us one of the most successful English clubs. However, in recent years, we have enjoyed more sporadic success. Part of this can be attributed to poor facilities, inappropriate for the modern era, and a lack of capacity to accommodate larger crowds. This has a direct impact on the business’s profitability and the money that it can therefore invest in and around the team and on the Rec’s facilities. The Rec now holds approximately half the 24,000 maximum crowd of our rivals Leicester.

As you will be aware, we were acquired by Bruce Craig in April 2010 and now have both the desire and opportunity to significantly improve facilities. Following a careful review of alternative sites in and around Bath, we concluded that keeping rugby at the Rec really is the right solution.

The Club has agreed, in principle, to buy the training ground at Lambridge from the Bath Football Club Trustees. Once the purchase has been completed, the land will then be gifted to the Recreation Ground Trust to compensate for any activities that might be displaced from the Recreation Ground if the Club is granted permission to extend the space we have there.

As a keen supporter, we wanted to update you on a critical stage in the process. The Bath Recreation Ground Trust has launched a consultation exercise to determine future land use at the Recreation Ground. We propose to provide compensating land (the Lambridge training ground) to the Trust, which will allow the Club to occupy more space for the development of a slightly bigger, but significantly better arena. The consultation provides a line drawing of land* that the Club would like to use to allow us to deliver better facilities at the Rec. It is an ‘in principle’ consultation so does not show any actual designs or concepts at this stage; these will follow in a planning consultation later in the summer.

It is a complex issue and we hope that this consultation will draw a line under the debate and allow us to fulfil the vision of much needed new facilities. It's a critical time for us and there is still much to resolve, but this is a real chance for you to have your say.

This consultation is crucial in deciding whether we can stay at the Rec long-term, so your support really counts. It is vitally important to ensure that the Recreation Ground Trust hears the views of as many people as possible and we are hoping that you will find the time to share your views with them.

Please encourage your friends, family and fellow fans to get involved by completing an online questionnaire at www.recreationgroundtrust.org.uk.

Soon, we hope to be talking to you and the local community about potential designs and options for the new facilities. We will keep you updated as much as possible and thank you, as ever, for all your support. It is very much appreciated.


Nick Blofeld
Chief Executive

Please click here to view the land use diagrams.

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