Wakefield Trinity Wildcats chairman Michael Carter has written an open letter to fans, outlining what he sees as a bright future for the club.
Wildcats are currently seven points adrift at the foot of First Utility Super League, but Carter insists there are reasons to be cheerful.
The chairman hailed the success of the club’s academy, said they have the support of new MP Andrea Jenkyns in their push for a modern community stadium on the local Newmarket site and are attracting new sponsors and corporate backers.
Carter also confirmed Wildcats will have more money to spend on team-strengthening, if they avoid relegation this season.
The full text of Carter’s letter is below.
“I would like to take this opportunity to convey to our loyal fans some of the positive things that are currently ongoing at the club.
1. Our Academy recently were awarded an accreditation of Good. This is a remarkable turnaround in just two years, when we were ranked as ‘weak’. All of the credit must go to Ryan Hudson and his team, but also to all you Club 1873 members who continue to provide funds to allow us to keep investing in our youth. We will continue to strive to achieve an ‘outstanding’ award next year.
2. We have had substantial support from our new local MP Andrea Jenkyns, in the #fightfornewmarket. We continue to pursue every avenue we can, to reward and justify the support of 15,000+ fans who signed a petition four years ago, that made Newmarket happen. Be very clear on this, without that support the Secretary of State would not have passed the scheme. The community needs a new facility it can be proud of and we will continue to fight for what is right!
3. We are rightly proud of the first crop of young players that the Club 1873 scheme has produced. Tom Johnstone has become an accomplished part of our first team squad, alongside Jordan Crowther and Max Jowitt, and both Jordan and Max have been picked to represent England in France later this week. These are the first fruits of what will hopefully become the norm in the future.
4. We have since day one tried to make sure that no one in the local business and community suffered any loss or debt being involved with Wakefield Trinity. If we had gone into administration that day, local businesses would have suffered to the tune of some £750,000! It is a great credit to everyone involved at the club, that we fought tooth and nail not to let this happen, unlike other clubs and regimes have in the past.
5. Our Sky Try program has started and continues to be a great success. We have already had upwards of 1,000 kids participating in this program, and the feedback we have had has been fantastic. We hope to engage thousands of more kids in the near future, to make them proud of being a junior Wildcat.
6. We continue to attract new corporate sponsors and indeed have a brand new match sponsor for the upcoming Leigh game. Our matchday hospitality continues to go from strength to strength with most games already very close to selling out. All our feedback suggests that the quality of food has massively increased and that has improved the whole matchday experience.
7. Our non matchday bookings continue to increase, with our Cats bar facility, and others, becoming a venue of choice for weddings, birthdays, Christenings and parties. This is a vital source of revenue for the club, and every penny of profit that is made from our in-house catering, is ploughed back into the first team squad.
8. It has been a turbulent and traumatic two years off the field, but we are still here and not going away. This year was always in my mind one of staying in Super League. If we can achieve this, then next year through our debt reduction and increase in TV money, we would have an extra £175k to invest in the first team. This would bring us to just £50k short of the current salary cap limit. Probably the best position this club has ever been in regarding salary cap spend.
We appreciate that there are a lot of angry fans out there right now due to the horrendous run of form we currently are enduring. However we still have a hell of a lot to fight for, and we need all of you fighting alongside us. This is a massive six months coming up for all of us, and the only chance we will have is by standing shoulder to shoulder.
That all starts this Sunday against Leigh in the Challenge Cup. We have an excellent offer on where junior season ticket holders get in for free, and other juniors are only £1. A great offer to bring all the family down for the day and experience the action live.
Finally, can I thank all you loyal supporters who have continued to back me through these tough times. You have truly given me the strength to carry on with the job we started out on two years ago. The realisation that Rome wasn’t built in a day is not lost on you and for that you will always have my utmost respect. We know we have made mistakes along the way, hindsight is a wonderful thing, but every decision taken has been done so with the best interests of Wakefield Trinity at heart. I have never taken a penny out of Wakefield Trinity, and never will. In fact it has cost myself and Chris, hundreds of thousands of pounds, attempting to turn this club around. The job remains only half done, and if we don’t achieve it, it wont be for the want of trying.I look forward to seeing you all on Sunday.”