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RFU Championship funding keeps pace with competition growth

21 August 2012

  • Revised funding based entirely on English Qualified Players scheme
  • Additional funding given for the British & Irish Cup
2012-13 RFU Championship launch

Photo: RFU Archive

The revised RFU Championship funding structure was unveiled at the season launch today, Tuesday August 21.

Following extensive consultation with the clubs, the Rugby Football Union (RFU) and Championship Clubs Committee have agreed a structure running from the 2012-13 season up to and including 2015-16.

Conditional on clubs continuing to participate in the English Qualified Player scheme, the total funding provided by the Rugby Football Union will show a steady increase to reflect the growing nature of the competition.

As well as money received as a result of fielding 15 English Qualified Players in a match day 22 – the threshold rising from 14 – the RFU will increase its financial underwriting in relation to a title sponsorship while efforts continue to secure a partner.

Additional funding will be provided for the British and Irish Cup in the form of travel assistance and for the first time in the competition, a financial reward will be given upon those RFU Championship sides that reach the knock-out stages.

Also new for the 2012-13 season, a revision to the current structure will see the 12 clubs compete in a league across 22 rounds, with the bottom club relegated to SSE National League 1 and the top four clubs going on to compete in a two-legged semi-final and final. The winners of the semi-finals will go on to play in the RFU Championship final – also two legs.

Support the continued development of the competition - Andrew

Following the announcement at the Championship launch today, Championship Club Committee Chairman and CEO of Bedford Blues Geoff Irvine commented:

“I am delighted to welcome in the new season and a new chapter for the competition. With the four year funding now agreed between the Union and the clubs, I am hopeful that the competition can continue to advance both on and off the field.”

Rob Andrew, Professional Rugby Director said:

“The Union and the Championship Clubs have now agreed a funding structure that will support the continued development of the competition, as well as provide financial security over the following four years. I’d like to thank Geoff and the clubs for their co-operation, and wish all those in the RFU Championship the best for the 2012-13 season.”