Worcester’s MP, Robin Walker, has welcomed a deal that will bring new investment to Sixways and a business plan focused on rugby.
He has reiterated his calls for professional elite rugby to be at the forefront of the future of the Worcester Warriors and welcomed the decision of the RFU, announced today to bring the Warriors Women back into the Allianz Premier 15s for next season, expressing his hope that the men’s team can follow suit.
Worcestershire MPs have previously joined forces with local councils to make clear that whilst there is significant development potential at Sixways, they will only support development on or around the site if it used to support the interests of the rugby club and the community.
Whilst there has been a long running process with the administrator to get to this point, it is welcome news that a deal has been reached which will secure the interests of creditors and the taxpayer.
It gives hope that a sustainable rugby business can now be established and that professional rugby at Sixways, the great legacy of Cecil Duckworth, can be restored. The remaining hurdle is for the Atlas consortium to meet the requirements of the RFU and for the rugby authorities to confirm that the Warriors can return to the championship next season.
Commenting on today’s news, Robin Walker said:
“I’m delighted to see the process of saving the Warriors taking a step forward. It will be relief to have clarity on the future ownership and to be able to start building for the future. We must now make sure that they are able to compete and win a fair place at the top flight of rugby once again. I want the RFU to run a fair and transparent process in order to assess the new owners and to ensure there is a degree of transparency going forward that avoids this club, or indeed any other, getting into the kind of mess it was in last year. It is right that they should apply a more rigorous fit and proper process than they did in the past, but it needs to be one that works for commercial investors with rugby at the heart of their plans. I am hopeful that if everyone gets around the table over the coming weeks, this can be done in time for the Warriors to be included in the championship next season.
“Alongside this it is fantastic news to hear that the Warriors Women will be able to return to the top flight from next year. Their performances have been phenomenal and they have earned their place at the top of the women’s game time and time again, not least through the way in which they kept going and kept playing through all the challenges of last year. I am hugely grateful to the local businesses who have stepped in to support them. I hope that this may be a case of ladies first and that where the women’s team have led, the men can follow, to resume their place, first in the championship and then the premiership.”
Notes to editors
The announcement from the Administrators read:
Julie Palmer, partner at Begbies Traynor, said:
“Following a complex process, we are now able to progress the sale of Worcester Warriors and associated assets to Atlas Worcester Warriors Rugby Football Club Limited ("Atlas").
“We can confirm that contracts have been exchanged with Atlas. This is an exclusive contractual position and Atlas are committed to completing this transaction as early as possible and will share with both the rugby community and local community their plans for the Club’s future.
“Due to the confidential nature of this transaction, we have been unable to provide this update any earlier but have appreciated the ongoing interest of supporters, staff and related organisations.
“We are delighted to see that there is a clear plan in place to deliver both rugby and many other exciting community-focused initiatives to Sixways befitting the fabulous facilities and which will entertain the extensive support base.
“We would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate the women’s team who are being readmitted to the Allianz Premier 15s next season.”
For the RFU announcement on the Warriors see
For Robin’s previous work on the Warriors see: