Rugby League

Community Game Governance

Most Rugby League Clubs are community based not-for-profit Clubs and rely upon the time given by volunteers to function. However, they are still required to comply with numerous legal, regulatory, and statutory requirements. Failure to adopt good governance and good financial management not only puts the Clubs at risk but also negatively impacts the integrity of our sport, whether in the local community or beyond. It is therefore vial for the future of our sport that the integrity of rugby league is always protected and upheld by all Clubs

The purpose of this guidance is to assist Clubs with these issues through raising awareness of legal, regulatory, tax and other statutory requirements and to improve Club sustainability by encouraging good management and governance. It is not intended to provide detailed commentary on every matter but to set out the key considerations in one place and to function as a checklist that will point Clubs in the right direction of these key issues upon which they need to focus. This in turn will enable Clubs to better identify areas where they need to act and to seek further information and advice where necessary. 

Below are the 13 key principles of good governance approved by the RFL set out as a blueprint for clubs to follow:

Who is responsible for governance?

Every Club is governed in a slightly different way. How your Club might be governed depends on the legal and management structures you have in place.

Governance is usually the responsibility of:

  • Management Group members and trustees.
  • Committee members.
  • Senior volunteers or staff.
  • Professional advisors such as an accountant or bookkeeper.

However, achieving good governance requires the input of everyone involved in running your Club and delivering its activities.

What are the benefits of having good governance?

There are lots of benefits of having good governance, including:

  • Creating a welcoming and inclusive offer that meets people’s needs.
  • Meeting your legal responsibilities.
  • Having robust and reliable systems, processes, and policies in place.
  • Managing and controlling risks.
  • Making confident, timely, good decisions and effectively implementing them.
  • Improving your efficiency, giving you more time to focus on additional priorities.
  • Making the best use of available resources.
  • Having open and transparent decision making and reporting processes.
  • Improving the confidence of your people and investors.

The 13 Principles

Community Club Guidance

A full copy of the Community Club Guidance document can be found here:

Community Club Guidance