With news in recent days that West Wales Raiders won’t compete in the upcoming 2023 campaign and the earlier reported news that Whitehaven almost went under during the 2022 season, it’s clear that teams across the divisions are feeling the effects of the cost of living crisis.
Batley Bulldogs are responding with a very bold plan as they admit themselves as they will half all admission fees to just £10 for all paying adults in the upcoming season in an attempt to get more fans through the gates with chairman Kevin Nicholas stating it’s a plan to “encourage more people to come and to try build on the success of last year.”
The Bulldogs went all the way to the Million Pound Game last year after finishing fifth in the regular season and despite that success they’ve admitted that they’ve felt the pinch as well, and hope that this brilliant initiative will see increased attendance figures.
In a video released to the side’s Youtube channel that was also shared on the club Twitter profile, chairman Kevin Nicholas explains the plan.
“We realise that these are difficult times for many people, particularly with the cost of living. We want to build on the success of last year, the atmosphere and the people and supporters who went to Barrow, or Featherstone of Leigh was absolutely tremendous.
“If we can get those people to come to the club week in week out then we can go forward big time. So the desire is to get kore people to come and watch Batley Bulldogs and also to help the people who perhaps couldn’t come and watch, financially they may be pressed by all the bills.
“With the help of these sponsors what we’ve decided to do and take a big bold move is to reduce admission price for next year to try to boost the club, it’s reduced to £10 for every adult or concession. Everybody is £10 and all children are free, that’s a big step when we’ve been charging £20 and £15.”
💥Here it is!! Something we've been working on for quite a while.
🎟 Our Admission and Season Ticket prices for 2023 thanks to amazing sponsorship.
— Batley Bulldogs RLFC (@BatleyRLFC) December 23, 2022
It’s a huge risk for the Bulldogs to take as they potentially cut their revenue stream by 50% but if the performances on the field are anything like last season then surely they’ll become the best value ticket to watch rugby league in the country.
Nicholas also announced that season tickets will be reduced accordingly to £110 which will see members receive entry into all 13 home games and the summer bash which is set to take place at York’s LNER Community stadium.
Bulldogs will be without star full-back Luke Hooley who has signed with Leeds but they’ve been able to extend Ben White for a further year which is brilliant for them as he hasn’t missed a game since 2020 and will be key for their success.
Nicholas continued: “What we need now is people to come through the turnstiles, obviously the sponsors are making up some of the losses but our best guestimate is that it’s a £30,000 potential loss this year but we’re taking that risk in the hope it will encourage more people to come.
“And for those who do come that have any spare money we’d hope they could potentially spend it on matchday and help the club make up the shortfall.”