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Rayners Lane Rugby Club has had an application for flood­lig­hting at its ground rejected which could see the Middlesex club face relegation and even liquidation.

Rayners, who currently play in the Uhlsport Hellenic Rugby League Division 1 East, attempted to gain permission for floodlights which would enable the club to fulfill midweek fixtures but planning officers have advised Harrow Council to reject the plans for six floodlights.  

If the club does not build the floodlights at its Tithe Farm Sports and Social Club ground it would fail to fulfill the criteria required to play at Level 6 of the football pyramid and face automatic relegation.

Club secretary Tony Pratt said: "At the moment we are still waiting to hear the result of the application and we are still hopeful we can get them. If we can't get them it does mean that we would face possible demotion to what is known as level 7 football, which to be honest is not good enough for a club like this.

"That could have massive ramifi­cations for this club. As a small club we do rely on money from sponsors, especially in a difficult financial climate for sports clubs. If we are relegated we have to accept, realis­ti­cally, that some of our backers will lose interest which would leave us in a very precarious position.

"That would have far reaching conse­qu­ences. Not just for this club but for the Tithe Farm Social Club, which needs the money we bring in from club functions and match days. It is worrying but we are still hopeful that we can get the go ahead for the lights."

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