Today former WRU CEO David Moffett has launched the manifesto which forms part of his bid to gain a place on the WRU board. Moffett chose the Castle Hotel in Neath as the location for the official launch of his campaign. That choice isn’t a coincidence: the Castle Hotel is where the WRU was founded in March 1881.
Entitled, “One Wales – Building a sustainable future together”, the detailed document describes his vision to re-unite Welsh rugby.
Moffett says it’s time for change in Welsh rugby as the game in Wales faces a number of difficult decisions:
“Welsh Rugby stands at the crossroads and needs to decide which path it wants to take for the future. Under the current regime the idea of ONE WALES is as far from reality as is possible. The clubs are so removed from the WRU that they have become increasingly insular in outlook.
For the first time in Welsh Rugby history a candidate for election to the position of Chairman is releasing a comprehensive Manifesto, on which Welsh Rugby can decide.
With the release of my Manifesto the choices are very, very clear.
Either continue with the current dictatorial, undemocratic approach which has disenfranchised the community game or adopt a system which owes much to the past when the clubs had more say in the way the WRU is run.
The latter path is my vision for Welsh Rugby; the former has no place in a democratic union of clubs.
My Manifesto sets out what I would like to achieve in the next 3 years:
- The resurrection of the Community Game
- A partnership to secure and grow the Professional and Semi-Professional Games
- The restructuring of the Governance of the WRU
- A complete review of the financial performance of the WRU
I don’t pretend to have all of the answers, but I am fully prepared to take on board additional suggestions and constructive feedback to build on my initial proposals.
Playing my part
If the clubs endorse my Manifesto and believe that my strategic plan is what Welsh rugby needs, I intend to do everything I can to represent them as the WRU’s first independent chairman.
There is a better way of doing things, not just for the national team, but also for every aspect and tier of Welsh rugby. Welsh clubs are special; they have been overlooked for too long and it’s time for change.”
There are a number of key recommendations in the manifesto which Moffett says are necessary in order to realise his vision for change:
“The following summarises the key important recommendations I believe will provide Welsh Rugby with the strongest platform for sustainable growth. These points will be outlined in more detail in the pages that follow.
- ‘Local solutions for local problems’ within the Community Game – a radical change in the relationship between the WRU and its member clubs
- Replacement of the district representation system with five Regional Rugby Boards
- Devolution of power back to the clubs
- £1.5M immediately available to fund club Infrastructure grants, to be administered by the Regional Rugby Boards
- An additional £2M to be made available to supplement Government funding in the crucial area of increasing participation
- New 4G pitches prioritised for mini, junior, schools & youth rugby in every region
- WRU Ambassadors to sponsor new advisory groups to design radical new approaches for age-grade rugby, Rugby 7s, women’s rugby, match officials and medical support
- Support for Premiership and Championship clubs to identify & implement the key reforms, appropriate competition structures and financial support that they need
- New Combined Player Contracts to be negotiated on a basis that benefits the WRU, the professional teams and the players. A unique opportunity exists to set a new benchmark in the increasingly difficult world market for players & coaches.
- Five-year rolling franchise deals for professional teams
- Expansion of the number of professional teams to be formally considered
- Chairman’s Special Advisory Group to be set up to recommend a new approach for the Welsh language across Welsh Rugby
- Reform of the WRU Board, including the appointment of an Independent Chairman, and the commitment to set a target number of Board positions to be held by women by 2020
- Immediate external review of the financial position of the WRU
- Sale of Millennium Stadium naming rights
- Reduction in non-essential Board and Executive costs
- Accountability at all levels of Welsh Rugby.”
You can read the document in full here: