FURTHER work has continued this week concerning return to play.

This decision is not easy. We have done some calculations and we are staring at a small loss or a decent sized loss depending on whether the COVID testing is free.

We have made approaches to BAE Systems and the initial contact suggests that they may be able to provide a testing service for us.

They are conducting 5000 tests a week and another 30 is not going to make much difference, as well as being a PR boost to the company.

We already are in partnership through our community sponsorship deal and we are working well together. Both organisations have a vision of a Better Barrow.

The stumbling block seems to be that the RFL guidance insists on health care professionals visiting our site to conduct the tests and an end to end process in place.

It almost feels as strict as a regular drugs test yet surely this must be seen as entirely different. No player will want to disguise the fact that they have contracted COVID.

They would all want to know so that they could isolate and protect their family and work colleagues and to allow an element of test and trace to be conducted.

Barrow Raiders can afford to pay for the testing, but we are looking at a substantial five figure sum spread over the period of the cup competition which could be 13 weeks if you include a mini pre-season.

The problem we have is that if we spend the money this season then it is money we can’t use next season.

We see a lot of clubs starting to recruit and it obviously puts us at a disadvantage if we have less money in our playing budget.

The counter argument is that we can give something back to our fans and sponsors and in the long run they are more likely to stick with you if you have tried your absolute best to return.

The board have been working incredibly hard and we have established something very special off the pitch with our work ethic.

The events we have been putting on at The Matt Johnson Prestige Stadium seem to have resonated with the Barrow public and we now have a venue that is being used many more times than match days alone. This has been the plan from day one when I arrived and we have put ourselves in to a much better financial position than most.

I believe that we can repeat what we have done this summer, every year and provide income streams that are going to give the club real strength. So, we have a quandary.

Return and spend significant money or put this year’s earnings into the club’s coffers and be really strong next season.

I sense that the boardroom is split, and we have called a meeting on Thursday evening before the Friday deadline. Return or not to return, that is the question.