Rochdale Hornets

Photo 17-08-2017, 16 34 55


We were founded in 2014 with the simple aim of having more people play rugby league more often.

With the help of dedicated community coaching staff and our foundation management team we have made huge steps towards achieving that goal. Our work doesn’t stop here though, and we will continue to work towards providing fun and unique opportunities for the local community.

Using the power of professional sport, we will inspire children and adults to lead a healthier, fuller life and take a pride in their local community by using a variety of fun, engaging quality assured programmes.

Congrats to our trustee Ben Boothman on winning an award at the Rochdale Business Awards!

Ben's company Gumboo won Business of Year - including the excellent The Flying Horse Hotel!

Well done!




Our programmes


Our Foundation have helped set up a Rochdale Hornets Wheelchair RL team, who are have been competing in a historic first ever league campaign. With fortnightly training sessions, players are always welcome to join in regardless of their experience. It is a great social activity which has come on leaps and bounds over the last few years, and we're certain it will continue to grow.

Michael Ratu is in charge of our Wheelchair RL sessions, and you can find out more about how you can get involved by contacting him via email at 


We host a number of local community clubs throughout the Kingstone Press Championship season to raise the curtain on Rochdale Hornets' home fixtures. This gives youngsters a brilliant opportunity to play on the Crown Oil Arena pitch right before their heroes! If your club is interested in taking part, at any age group, then get in touch via email at


One of the most important things, not just in rugby league but in day to day life, is looking after your mental health. Here at the Foundation, we work alongside State of Mind to offer important sessions and talks on how you can cope with mental illness. Former Hornets star Danny Sculthorpe is a regular guest, talking through his own issues with depression and how he overcame his demons. Keep your eyes peeled for updates on our latest event.


Led by local personal trainer Chris Honor, the foundation have been delivering the FIT Schools programme to help improve the health and well-being of local school children. Since launching the project in April the foundation has tested over 1250 children and given the schools a good insight to their pupils’ progress. Some of the tests they have gone through assess their speed, agility, strength and co-ordination. Last year, there was an 8% increase in child activity, and with one school already undergoing phase 2 testing we have seen similar results this year.


Sky Try is all about helping more children enjoy Rugby League nationwide. It’s a ground breaking new partnership initiative between the RFL, Sky and the Rugby League Foundations.

Sky Try is the biggest ever programme of Rugby League opportunities in primary and secondary schools. Sky Try is helping 700,000 more children and young people have fun, get active, grow in confidence and enjoy Rugby League.

The Sky Try campaign inspires children and young people through professional Rugby League clubs and major Rugby League events. Sky Try is changing the future of Rugby League by giving hundreds of thousands of children and young people a high quality introduction to the sport and helping them to find more playing local opportunities – from school teams to local community clubs and the award-winning talent pathway.



Our Origin series develops rugby league players from the local and surrounding areas, as they compete for their Township. There are four Townships, Rochdale, Heywood, Middleton and Pennine, with each area taking part in training sessions before they go head-to-head to see which Origin side is they best.

The foundation target a number of different school years, both at primary and high school ages, and are looking to increase participation in the sport through the Origin series. Just like Queensland and New South Wales, we want our participants to take pride in their Township as they represent their area to become the best.


Our Junior Elite Training Programme, or JETS, targets different age groups in the local area to develop their skills and understanding of the game. The sessions, held during half-term, consist of skill development, movement literacy and player education. With field and classroom sessions it gives youngsters an insight into the life of a professional athlete, with small sided games also taking place at the end of the week.

This year talent identification coaches from partner club Warrington Wolves were in attendance, which gave those taking part a chance to showcase their skills to a Super League outfit.

The programme is part of the England Talent Pathway and is inclusive to all, and the foundation have actively targeted more Oldham based players to grow the numbers of players on the programme. All sessions are held at Hopwood Hall's Academy rugby facilities.