Barrow Raiders chairman Steve Neale writes a weekly column for The Mail.

Barrow Raiders have continued to strengthen their team off the pitch in the last few months and everyone associated with the club is working incredibly hard.

There is currently a vacancy to join our community team as the grants continue to come into the club following our demonstration of delivery of a range of projects.

As we are released from the pandemic and the spotlight focusses on mental and physical health and wellbeing, we can only see this department strengthening further.

This could be an extremely rewarding job for people that want to give back to their communities and help to inspire a better lifestyle.

Craig Boothroyd has also joined the team as stadium director and he is the perfect fit to replace Joe Slater, who did a tremendous job for the club.

Craig runs his own joinery business and has all the skills required to make a big difference to the improvements to the stadium.

To a degree, he has been thrown in at the deep end as there is so much work ongoing now as we renovate the site ready to house our marquee and to add more facilities as we focus on massively increasing our crowds.

Scott Deakin has returned to the fold and he has taken over the reigns of looking after the youth development side of the club.

He has big boots to fill taking over where Keith Nutter left off, who will be sadly missed by everyone at the club.

Keith was such a tremendous supporter of the club.

Scott has put together a draft development plan that ties in with the thoughts of the board and coaching staff in that the eventual aim is to produce two teams at the late teen level – one perhaps being a reserve side.

Scott's – and the club’s – remit is also to grow the game in the area and we jointly want to put plans in place with the local league to dramatically increase participation at every level: mini, youth; open-age; masters; walking; girls; and ladies.

Our aim is to make Barrow an example for the rest of the game.

Paul and Lorraine Hunt have also joined us to help us with our bar management.

Paul is a lifelong fan of the club and is excited to help the club grow to be a force in the game.

He has already started to put his heart and soul into the role and he is set for a busy time.

For the last few years we have been preaching that we must increase our income streams away from rugby.

We are running a diversified business, not simply relying on crowds, and Paul and Lorraine will play a vital role this year.

We have many plans to use our marquee space to the fullest and we have invested significantly.

The outdoor hospitality we offer from Friday, April 16 could well set the scene for a game-changing year in terms of income and when we put together our 2022 development plan we are hoping that we can at last start to fund a number of significant improvement projects, as well as investing in a competitive Championship team.

We have a two-day concert in the pipeline, Euro Championships, several musically-themed weekends, and how about an October beer festival?

That’s provisional for now, but the Bierkeller feel of the marquee could be very conducive to something like that.