Group 16 officials are urging anyone to take up the call of becoming a referee.
In past years the Group has seen a number of veteran referees retiring and there are simply not enough new refs coming through to plug the gaps.
A spokesman said the group is now “in desperate need of referees for the upcoming season”.
“Its a great way to get some money and stay fit and healthy within the season.
“Without referees we wouldn't have the game that we all love. So spread the word - and join the Group 16 Referees team.”
Without referees we wouldn't have the game that we all love.Group 16 spokesperson
Much like the development of junior leagues, the spokesman said retention had become one of the biggest issues for the area as people move away for work or further studies.
However, the Group is encouraging anyone to sign up and become an integral part of rugby league competition.
If you would like to referee this year, just visit the website playnrl.com and click on the Register for Referees, then follow the links to register as a member for Group 16 RA.