Once again, we would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the many webinars and surveys that have been conducted over the last 12 months regarding the future competition structure (English Club Championship Level 3 and below). Click below to read the plan.
A detailed summary of responses from the Future Competition Structure Survey conducted over the summer, separated by player and non-player feedback, can be accessed here. In addition, the results from the survey conducted in February 2020 are available here.
As Covid-19 restrictions are still with us, and we remain uncertain of the timing and nature of the 2020/21 season, the Community Game Board have taken the decision to pause implementation of any changes to league structures (should these be approved at a future date by RFU Council) to season 2022/23. Work on the review remains a priority and will be discussed again at the RFU Council meeting on 27 November, where it is likely a vote on some key matters of principle will be taken.
We will also contact Honorary Secretaries at adult male clubs (levels 3-12) in the near future to ask for their input into a survey which aims to help us better understand the level of interest from clubs to entering Lower XVs teams into the RFU Leagues Pyramid to up to Level 7. At the same time we will share some draft criteria for this happening. The outcome of the survey will assist the FCS Group in understanding the number of teams coming into the pyramid. Whilst there is no commitment from clubs at this stage, the information will provide an important steer in assessing the level of interest from clubs and any potential impact on future structures.
We thank you for your continued support in this important process. The majority of people agree that we have a significant opportunity for rugby to develop in order to provide an optimal playing offer and structure that protects the future health of the adult male game while meeting the needs of current and future players. Players are looking for a balance of quality of experience, welfare needs and less travel. Meanwhile, we must also ensure we protect the sustainability of clubs.