The board of the English Rugby Partnership (ERP) – the joint venture between EFDR, ESDR and the RFU to administer and manage Premiership club rugby in England – today formally approved a proposal from EFDR strictly based on the Rob Andrew Plan as negotiated between EFDR and the RFU Management team.

This is the EFDR clubs’ first move towards their stated aim of implementing all the elements of the Rob Andrew/Club England Plan that are within their ability. The acceptance from the ERP Board means that the Plan will now be presented to the RFU Management Board and RFU Council as ERP policy with a recommendation that it be implemented as soon as possible.

ERP Director Peter Wheeler said, ‘The ERP board believes that the Club England report, as negotiated by EFDR and the RFU, is the correct way forward to achieve the RFU’s own stated aims of a financially viable and stable elite club game providing a sound platform on which world class English national teams at all levels can be created.’

Howard Thomas, Chief Executive of EFDR said, ‘Following ERP’s approval EFDR calls on the RFU Management Board and RFU Council to support their own plan emanating from Club England which was adopted as RFU policy in April this year. EFDR agrees with the RFU that this plan represents the best way forward for English rugby.’

At the same time a recent poll on top rugby website has revealed that out of 1,014 votes cast 64% of respondents support the EFDR clubs in the current dispute with 9% undecided and 27% supporting the RFU’s position.

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