6 Jan 2022

Rugby League Cares and RFL statement: National Rugby League Museum

Rugby League Cares and RFL statement: National Rugby League Museum

Rugby League Cares and the Rugby Football League wish to place on record their disappointment at the poor communication and lack of clarity from Kirklees Council regarding plans to establish the National Rugby League Museum in Huddersfield.

Kirklees won the tender to host this prestigious development in June 2020 when the local authority put forward a compelling application based on the museum being housed within the sport’s spiritual home, the George Hotel.

It was at the George Hotel that Rugby League as a sport was born on August 29, 1895 when 21 clubs elected to break away from the Rugby Football Union to enable working class players to be compensated for taking time off work to play rugby.

Rugby League Cares has spent the last 18 months working with Kirklees Council, the RFL, the University of Huddersfield and other stakeholders to realise this exciting project.

However, in late 2021, Kirklees Council, without consultation, appears to have unilaterally decided that the historic George Hotel is an inappropriate venue for the National Rugby League Museum and have this week announced their desire to establish the museum elsewhere in the town.

Despite repeated requests from Rugby League Cares and the RFL for more information on their plans, Kirklees Council have failed to identify the specific location they feel is better suited than the George Hotel to housing the National Rugby League Museum.

Rugby League Cares and the RFL are continuing to seek clarification from Kirklees Council, about both their volte face on the viability of the George Hotel, and the actual location of an alternative venue.

We hope that following their latest media statements, Kirklees Council will provide the information and facts we need to make a decision on the viability of their proposals.