Now that the dust has settled on another wonderful summer of sport – which saw Andy Murray secure another Wimbledon title and Team GB establish itself as a sporting superpower at the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games – it’s time to look forward to reaping the benefits of an increased interest in sport.
As happened with London 2012, it’s expected the Games will result in a spike of interest from people wanting to try new sports. In order to turn these enquirers into active users of sports facilities, we need to make sure their first contact with clubs and venues is a pleasurable and safe one: as an industry, we mustn’t miss any opportunities to help people get more active.
Help is on hand at next month’s Saltex trade exhibition for those seeking advice on how to provide safe and attractive spaces for sport. Held at the NEC in Birmingham on 2-3 November, this event is the premium gathering for the UK’s grounds care, sports, amenities, estates and green space management sectors.
From natural turf care and specialist machinery to synthetic surfaces and playgrounds, more than 260 exhibitors will showcase the latest in products, equipment and expertise at the free-to-visit event. With educational seminars and Ask the Expert sessions, it’s a great place for people – both within the sports industry and outside it – to expand their knowledge and build networks.
SAPCA will have an increased presence at this year’s Saltex as part of our continued cooperation with event’s organiser, the Institute of Groundsmanship (IoG).
Being at Saltex is part of our strategy to provide advice and guidance for the design, construction and maintenance of sports and play facilities whenever we can.
Several industry experts will be available at the SAPCA stand to discuss issues around sports and play. Many SAPCA member companies will also be exhibiting their products and services, and will be able to demonstrate their work in action.
SAPCA will also be putting on expert sessions to help facility operators and those looking to procure and use the services and products on show.
The event’s Learning Live programme will include two specialist seminars led by SAPCA. Garry Martin, operations director at RePlay Maintenance, will speak about the effective maintenance of synthetic turf, to maximise surface performance and longevity. The session will also introduce SAPCA’s new initiative to promote best practice and increase knowledge in the essential maintenance of surfaces.
Meanwhile, GeoTurf consulting director Jon Smith will present important new information and guidance on the selection of top soils for natural turf sports surfaces.
Please do come and visit us at stand number K196 in November.
Chris Trickey is CEO of The Sports and Play Construction Association (SAPCA).