Bristol Sonics will hold an open meeting this Sunday to discuss the future of Rugby League in Bristol and South Gloucestershire, and are urging anyone in the area with an interest in the sport to attend.
The meeting will take place at the Sonics home, Dings Crusaders’ Landseer Avenue ground in Lockleaze, at 12 noon on Sunday 10th May, directly after the Sonics’ juniors (under 15 and 16) have completed their first training session of the season.
On the agenda will be the way forward for not only the Sonics as a club, but also priorities for developing the sport of Rugby League in Bristol and South Gloucestershire over coming years.
After years of growth, the Sonics have struggled to maintain momentum in recent years, and are suffering from a lack of volunteers. Having been forced to withdraw from the elite Conference League South competition last month, the club wants to use this opportunity to re-assess the way forward over coming years and are open to fresh ideas. The meeting, which will be hosted by Chairman and co-founder Phil Cole, is an opportunity for Rugby League enthusiasts in the region to have their say and signal their intention to get involved in shaping the way the sport develops in the city over coming years.
Phil Cole said: “I can’t stress how important this meeting is. We’ve achieved a lot with the Sonics, building the club up from scratch over 13 years to a point where we were able to compete at the highest possible level in the amateur game. We also helped secure a Rugby League World Cup game in the city in 2013. We’ve also introduced many youngsters to the sport and a number of our players have gone on to enjoy successful professional or semi-professional careers in Rugby League. However, as a club we are struggling a little right now. If we’re going to move forward and continue to grow Rugby League in Bristol and South Gloucestershire, then people who love the sport in the area need to get involved. If they don’t, the club and the sport will start to struggle more and within a few years we might be back to square one. Nobody wants that.
“This is why we have called this meeting. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to make it to the meeting. The Sonics was formed after a similar open meeting in 2002, where people who had never previously met decided to get off their backsides and do something to develop the sport in the city. This meeting is just as important. Even if you can’t commit loads of time to becoming a volunteer, we’d like your input. If you think you can spare some time to get involved with the club, even better. Either way, please come along on Sunday and make your voice heard, so that we can secure the future of Rugby League in Bristol for generations to come.”
Sunday’s meeting will take place a day after the Sonics begin their West of England League season with a home match against Somerset Vikings (Saturday 9th May, Dings Crusaders RFC, kick-off 2.30pm, free entry). Spectators to Saturday’s game will be encouraged to return on Sunday for the meeting, or at least register their interest and thoughts with members of the Sonics’ committee.
You can find out more information about the meeting, or register your interest in volunteering should you not be able to make it, by emailing Phil Cole at firstname.lastname@example.org.