Blues won’t follow London Welsh policy

Geoff Irvine, the chairman of the Rugby Football Union Championship club the Bedford Blues, has ruled out following the same financial strategy that the London Welsh took to win a place in the Aviva Premiership last season.

The Exiles moved to the Kassam Stadium in Oxford from their former home at Deer Park after they won the RFU Championship play-off finals last season and this move cost them over £ 4 million in two seasons.

But according to Irvine, he could think of a lot of ways of spending £ 4 million if he had all that money to spend at all. Speaking to BBC Sport, Irvine stated that there is no chance that they will make the move away from Goldington Road, adding that it is their spiritual home and it is where they will stay and play for the foreseeable future. Bedford plays the Newcastle Falcons in two legged finals of the RFU Championship play-off, hoping to secure their place in the Aviva Premiership next season.

The London Welsh won the play-off final last season but were only allowed to be a part of the Aviva Premiership after having a successful appeal against the initial ruling of the RFU which stated that they did not meet the criteria to play in the Aviva Premiership. After agreeing a ground sharing deal with the football club Oxford United, The Exiles were relegated from the Premiership and might return to their old Deer Park home, although Lyn Jones, the club’s coach want them to retain their Oxford base.

The home of the Bedford Blues does not meet the criteria of the Premiership for several reasons and although there has been talk of sharing the MK Dons’ stadium, Irvine has ruled that move out, effectively putting their future in doubt even if they win the final.