Players and staff at Bristol Bears have agreed to take a pay cut while competitive rugby remains suspended.
In an open letter to fans, Bristol CEO Mark Tainton said that the club is “facing some extremely tough financial challenges during these unprecedented times caused by the Covid-19 crisis”.
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“Without matchday revenue and central funding from Premiership Rugby, the club have had to take some very difficult decisions to ensure the future security of the Bears and the competition,” Tainton said.
“Our industry has been impacted significantly by the economic downturn and we have been given no choice but to take action.”
Tainton added: “Pat Lam and I spoke to all the players and staff via video link on Friday to communicate this difficult message and answer any questions. The team recognise the pressures and concerns that our community is feeling.
“There are still uncertain times to come, but the most important thing is that we stick together as a collective and remain connected in our Bears culture that we have worked so tirelessly to build. Our commitment to training hard individually, preparing diligently and supporting community projects doesn’t change.
“When the time comes, whenever that may be, we will be ready to take on the challenges of Premiership Rugby once again.”
“We are in regular contact with PRL and the authorities so that when it is absolutely safe to play, we can return to business as usual as swiftly as possible.
“The health and wellbeing of our staff, friends, families and the wider community is of utmost priority to us and we urge you all to stay safe and follow government guidelines.”
Main photo: JMP