Our submission to the RFU on the new competition structure was posted on the web site for members information on 8 July. Following the submission, we received an invitation from Bill Sweeney (RFU CEO) to discuss our ideas in a zoom meeting. Bill, who has promised to visit Hoppers for a match day when games re-start, hosted the meeting which was held on Friday (24 July).
The RFU were also represented by Stephen Pearson, the chair of the new structure working group, Terry Burwell, a long standing, very distinguished and influential member of the RFU and Jon Inverdale, recently appointed chairman of the National Clubs Association (NCA). Hoppers were represented by Gareth Dyer who was primarily responsible for the generation of our submission, Graham Cox (Hon sec), Keith Aitchison and Brian Hexter.
We were very pleased to get the opportunity to discuss our proposals with such a distinguished audience and felt our submission had been well received as a good contribution to the current consultations. We were given a good hearing and we thought it was an excellent and extensive exchange of information and ideas on all of the topics in our proposal. The Working group are due to present a paper to the RFU council next week, which we hope will take note of, and potentially incorporate some of our suggestions.
There will probably be a further consultation before final proposals are presented to the council in October.
At the end of our meeting, Stephen Pearson asked if we would be happy for them to come back to us to discuss their proposals at the next consultation stage. We of course confirmed we are happy to continue to be involved. Further updates will be presented in due course.