Wakefield are tomorrow expected to announce their ground plans for 2018 as they consider a last-ditch proposal from the local council to keep them in the district.
Frustrated by the continuing failure to deliver on promises to build a new 12,000-capacity community stadium near the M62 at Newmarket, Trinity chairman Michael Carter served notice to quit the club’s ageing Belle Vue ground at the end of the season and put in place plans to share with Dewsbury.
However, Carter says that Wakefield Council produced a fresh proposal at a meeting on Monday and the club will reconvene for talks before making a final decision.
“There was a proposal thrown our way which was a lot to take in,” Carter said. “We’re due to meet again at 10.30 (on Wednesday morning) with a view to us going on sale with our season tickets at about 2pm, at which point we’ll be making a decision on where we’re actually playing next year.
“That’s the timescale we’ve got in mind at this moment in time. There is a lot to consider and, to be honest, I’ve not slept much last night because it’s been praying on my mind ever since we left the meeting.
“Time is now of the essence because I’ve got to get season tickets on sale. That’s fundamental to your cash-flows at this time of year and every other club pretty much has launched theirs.”
Belle Vue no longer meets the minimum standards for Super League, the Rugby Football League has given Wakefield special dispensation to remain there as long as they put in place suitable plans for the future.
But Carter says he will need guarantees on stadium revenue before committing himself to any agreement.
“To give some credit to the council, they obviously do want us to stay in the district,” Carter added. “The proposal was a complete surprise really. I can’t say too much but I can’t accept any old community stadium if it puts in doubt the long-term future of the club. It needs to be sustainable in its own right for the next 100 years.”
Wakefield, who still have an outside chance of securing a play-off semi-final, are expected to announce the signing Catalans Dragons second rower Justin Horo for next season.