The grounds-care team at St Albans School has won the Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) School, College or University Sports Club Grounds Team of the Year Award at the IOG Industry Awards.
The award was presented to Head Groundsman, Steve Ascott and Turf Consultant, Ian Smith, along with members of the Grounds Staff by IOG Chief Executive, Geoff Webb, in front of an audience of 350 of the UK’s and Europe’s leading grounds-care experts. The audience also included dignitaries from the governing bodies of sport and influential sports administrators.
With six [full time] employees, the St Albans School grounds-care team consistently produces first-class playing surfaces on the 73-acre Woollam Playing Fields site which holds rugby, cricket, football, athletics and cross country fixtures seven days a week not only for the school but also a number of local sports associations. It is also used as a training centre for the Saracens rugby team. In addition to the grass pitches, there are artificial surfaces for tennis, hockey and athletics.
Gary Douglas, Estates Manager at St Albans School says that the award highlights the importance that the school attaches to sport and physical well-being: “Visitors frequently comment on the quality of St Albans’ sporting facilities and this is in no small way down to the commitment, hard work and expertise of our grounds-care team who are to be justifiably proud of their achievement.”
The prestigious UK-wide IOG Award scheme highlights the high standards of volunteer and professional grounds professionals and facilities, from grass roots to professional stadia level. Embracing categories of entry covering sport, young people and the environment, the awards are judged by an independent panel on criteria that include effective use of resources, budgetary control, presentation and housekeeping standards, as well as environmental considerations.
The Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) is the leading membership organisation representing grounds managers, groundsmen, grounds maintenance managers, greenkeepers and all others involved in the management of sports pitches, landscape and amenity facilities in the UK.
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