Wembley to Whitebank

Date published: Thursday, May 27, 2010

OLDHAM Rugby League Club have received more help from local business in their efforts to upgrade Whitebank Stadium.

Specsavers have agreed a deal to sponsor the new scoreboard for this season and next, while a local timber firm has donated a lorry load of hard-wood . . . all the way from Wembley!

“From Wembley to Whitebank, strange but true,” said Barry Whitehead, who runs a reclaimed timber yard in Coal Pit Lane, Hollins, just behind the Roughyeds’ new ground.

The 8ft long timbers, enough to fill two articulated lorries, were bolted together to form a platform for use by excavators and diggers in the construction of the new Wembley.

Barry acquired them from a third party and they were stored in his yard until he was approached by his nephew Sean, a Roughyeds director.

“These timbers are the real deal, eight inches wide, three inches thick, and they don’t need any protective coating,” said Barry. “Roughyeds have had about 40 of them and they are being put to good use.”

Specsavers, meanwhile, have had the vision to back the club for the second time in 15 months.

“A lot of work is going on at Whitebank and we wanted to be part of it,” said Rod Fullalove, one of three directors of Specsavers stores in Oldham, Royton and Rochdale. His two fellow directors are Nigel Williams and Peter Holt.

“It was suggested that we sponsor the scoreboard,” added Rod, “and we felt that was appropriate. We are delighted to be linking up with the club commercially again at this exciting time for the Roughyeds.”

Nigel and Rod, whose son John is playing for the reserves this season, have been Roughyeds fans for years.

Rod has already seen two games at Whitebank and he will be there again on Saturday for the reserves match against York City Knights.

Rachael Marsters, the Roughyeds commercial manager, said: “The town is getting behind us on the Whitebank project and we are thrilled to welcome Specsavers as our latest sponsors.

“Thanks also to Barry Whitehead. It’s novel to have materials that went into the making of Wembley now being used in the upgrading of Whitebank.”