Written by: Keith Tully
Published: 14th November 2016
The rugby league club Bradford Bulls has been entered into administration after failing to reach an agreement with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) in relation to a £350,000 outstanding tax bill.
Marc Green, the club’s chairman, has said that its directors were left with no choice but to enter the organisation into administration in the face of an HMRC winding up petition which was issued in October.
Green explained that discussions with investors in recent weeks were not enough to bring about a resolution of his club’s financial issues and said that “pressure from HMRC has forced the club to be put into this position to save its future”.
The Bulls, which is one of the best known rugby league clubs in the country, was also entered into administration in 2012 and 2014, with Green taking over as its chairman two years ago.
“There is a dispute between ourselves and HMRC which we have been working hard to resolve since the winding-up petition was issued and despite two adjournments from the courts to resolve this matter we have been unable to do so,” Green explained in a statement.
“We were concerned over the ability to secure a third adjournment and therefore this action [entering administration] became unavoidable to protect the club.
“I will be working closely with the administrators over the coming weeks and it is my intention to regain this club from them within the shortest practicable time frame.
“Regardless of whether I remain at the helm of this great club, I will ensure all memberships already purchased for next season will remain valid, as will the offer under which they were purchased. I believe the future of Bradford Bulls is still strong.”
Bradford Bulls have won the prestigious Super League Grand Final and Challenge Cup trophies on numerous occasions but were relegated from the top flight of the English rugby league system in 2014.
The organisers of England’s professional rugby league structure, the Rugby Football League, is yet to comment on whether Bradford’s entry into administration will result in any sporting sanctions or penalties.
But the body has said it intends to support the club during what it says is “undoubtedly a painful and uncertain time for supporters, players and employees” of Bradford Bulls.