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

Things are moving at a rapid pace as we head towards the start of the season.

We have been restricted to two warm-up games in preparation for the season and it has been a bit of a struggle arranging games given that both Super League and the Championship campaigns have started.

However, we are delighted to get two in the bag with trips to Workington on Sunday, April 18, (2pm kick-off) and Hunslet on Sunday, April 25 (3pm kick-off).

Both these games will give the whole squad an opportunity to put up their hand up for a place in the team and give the coaching staff and board of directors food for thought as we play two of our potential promotion rivals.

We felt we were a little under-cooked for the Oldham fixture and have loads of improvement in us, but I guess at some point the talking needs to be done on the field.

We are again taking advantage of the RFL’s Ourleague App for streaming the Workington game, with both production costs and potential profits from pay per view divided equally between the clubs.

For the Hunslet fixture, they are working on providing their in-house streaming service but once again there will be an opportunity to view the fixtures.

We are still waiting for more details of how that access will work.

With the green light for outdoor hospitality being given on Monday we are pressing full steam ahead with our beer garden.

We have been taking bookings for the opening weeks and already are over-subscribed for marquee space.

We do, however, have a much greater table capacity on the pitch so if the weather is good then there should be tables available.

We have a meeting this week with both the council and police around opening in a Covid-secure way and the club will be issuing information to both staff and customers so that everyone can safely move on the journey towards normality.

The marquee has the added advantage that we can stream those friendly games so our fans can start to enjoy the games together.

There will be free entry to the marquee but bookings through our Facebook page are going fast and Covid regulations mean that social distancing must be observed.

To get the terrace converted into a marquee space has been a tremendous effort but I must single Keith Holt out for special praise.

He has been having sleepless nights project managing the operation, but it is credit to him that we have transformed the ground so quickly.

The marquee really is a game-changer for the club.

The Raiders Bar was functional but unfortunately much too small and this temporary venue now gives us capacity to think much bigger.

If we can enjoy similar success to last summer then we could have a budget to match the very best Championship teams in 2022.

I look at York, who jumped from League One champions to Championship regular season runners-up, and I honestly believe we could replicate that.

We could be knocking on the door to Super League very soon.

Our development plan references improving facilities so we won’t be persuaded to move too fast on the team improvements without the infrastructure improving too, but all the board members have genuine Super League ambitions.

The town of Barrow deserves a Super League team along with a Football League side at Holker Street to help put us on the map.