Oldham RLFC tackle loan sharks

Date published: Monday, March 25, 2013
OLDHAM Rugby League Club and their community partners Regenda have teamed up to tackle loan sharks and to back Oldham Council’s initiative to bring them to justice.
Council flyers raising awareness of the dangers of loan sharks were distributed to the Whitebank crowd at the home game against Gateshead Thunder.
Roary, the Roughyeds’ mascot, and Sid the Shark mingled with fans to support Simon Tait of Oldham MBC and his team in condemning loan sharks and recommending Oldham Credit Union instead.
Roughyeds players David Cookson and Jamie Dallimore, who didn’t play against Gateshead, also helped to get the message across.
Bill Lovat, Regenda’s regional director (East), was also at the game to support the initiative and to talk to club sponsors and hospitality suite guests about Regenda’s links with the club.
He said: “Regenda strongly supports this fight against loan sharks and we were pleased to take part in the event with Oldham RLFC.
“It’s hugely positive to see a local club taking such an active part in community life, and recognising that there are issues that might affect their supporters.
“As part of the solution, Regenda and the club are working together to promote Oldham Credit Union, providing practical options and alternatives in dealing with this threat from loan sharks.
“This is a fine example of a local partnership showing benefits for the community, local residents and the club’s supporters and we look forward to working together in the years ahead.”
Added Oldham RL chairman Chris Hamilton: “We are aware of the importance of being involved with projects like this, which is sending out a strong message at a time when many people are facing financial difficulty.
“We are pleased to assist and, in conjunction with Regenda, we are also helping to promote an alternative form of finance with Oldham Credit Union.
“This is a key message not only to our supporters, but also to the larger public in this very difficult economic climate.
“Regenda have demonstrated their commitment to the local community via their Limehurst Village 10-year plan and have also supported us fully as we strive to establish the club in the same community.”
Describing loan sharks as “criminals who prey on vulnerable people and blight communities”, Councillor Jean Stretton, cabinet member for Neighbourhoods and Devolved Services, said: “They fleece their victims and often use intimidation and violence.
“Oldham Council will not allow this bullying and criminal behaviour and we will work with our partners to target those who think they are above the law.
“Instead of turning to loan sharks I would encourage residents to use Oldham Credit Union which offers great saving and lending opportunities.”