Workington need Championship promotion - Dave Bowden

Jarrad Stack
Australian second row Jarrad Stack is among the players Workington chairman Dave Bowden is keen to retain for 2012 and beyond

Workington Town chairman Dave Bowden says promotion from Championship One is imperative for the club next season.

Town lost to Keighley Cougars in the Grand Final to miss out this year, and the league's restructuring in 2013 has increased pressure for success.

"Fans want to see the old names like Leigh, Featherstone and Halifax," Charlton told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"If it's clubs like Hemel Hempstead [coming into the league] it will be difficult to make it in that company."

Bowden added: "Certainly, it will be the same for more traditional clubs in our league, so it'll be a tough old league, a rat-race to get up next season."

The Rugby Football League is restructuring the Championship divisions in 2013 in the wake of a reshuffle of Super League licences, with an expected expansion from 11 to 14 set to include teams from the Conference divisions.

Meanwhile among the challenges facing Bowden and head coaches Gary Charlton and Martin Oglanby over the winter months will be retaining the bulk of a squad containing the division's Young Player of the Year in hooker Jack Pedley and the previous recipient of that award Jarrad Stack.

"It's going to be a big job for us next year, I've gone on record of saying that it will be a dogfight next year to get out of this league, and we'd like to retain all the players we can," Bowden said.

"We've got a young team and I'd like to see us progress for another season, maybe even two, so we'll sit down and talk to all the players this winter."

Workington will be without the retiring Neil Frazer for 2012, as well as losing Dave Armistead who is returning to his native Australia.

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