Wigan snubbed as RL museum goes to Bradford

An artist's impression of the planned new rugby museum

An artist's impression of the planned new rugby museum

Wigan has been snubbed as a potential host for the new rugby league museum after it was revealed it it is to be based in Bradford.

It is believed the town made tentative bids for the new facility with the former Way We Were building being mentioned as a possible venue.

However, Rugby League Cares announced that the new National Rugby League Museum will be based in the Yorkshire in the city which is currently undergoing a cultural and architectural transformation.

The museum is scheduled to open in August 2020 to mark Rugby League’s 125-year anniversary and will take pride of place within Bradford City Hall opposite City Park, a multi-award winning public space which is home to the UK’s largest urban water feature.

Bradford was selected as the home for the game’s first ever museum following an extensive consultation process led by a working group chaired by Dr Kevin Moore, the director of the celebrated National Football Museum, and involving local authorities, the Rugby Football League and other key stakeholders.

Bradford beat off stiff competition from a number of major towns and cities to host the museum, which will house and display the sport’s extensive collections and historical artefacts, as well as being a world-class, interactive visitor attraction.

Chris Rostron, the Head of Rugby League Cares, said: “Through all our discussions with the city council and its officers we have been overwhelmed by the positivity for this very prestigious project. The city’s commitment to working with Rugby League Cares to help us realise our ambitions to make the museum a world-class attraction shone through from day one.

The museum will be funded from a range of sources, including private benefactors and grants from central Government, and the funding application process is already at an advanced stage.

Bradford Council leader, Coun Susan Hinchcliffe, said: “We are committed to working with all relevant parties to ensure that the museum is a success.”