The Groundsman

July 2012

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the Groundsman July 2012 scale of the new additions has been considerable, with £7.1 million being injected into the project, which also includes the construction of two new pavilions – one cricket pavilion and a new clubhouse. The first stage of the works were concluded in October 2010 and the final two cricket squares and outfields finished the following April - squares that are coming into play this season. Richard worked alongside main contractor Agripower, which constructed the two rugby pitches and the running track, and with Sports Turf Consulting's turf agronomist Noel MacKenzie, who guided the team on how to best achieve healthy pitches to help foster long-term sporting success. "I recommended Noel from day one," says Richard. "We first collaborated some years ago at Uxbridge, then at a local prep school. I liked his work, so it made sense to involve him again this time." Noel came in to deliver the specifications for both the rugby and cricket outfields and, through a rigorous tendering process, Agripower was appointed. The consensus regarding the rugby pitches was to make them strong rooting and drought resistant, as the clay/silt loam base that was only 25-50 mm deep in some places allows the site to dry out very quickly. The large number of stones in the soil also made the location difficult to work. "The approach with the cricket squares and outfields has been largely the same," says Richard. Rugby pitch being shock-waved prior to seeding comp ct yet competitiv ompaca t yet competitive A view of the Old Boys First XV pitch FEATURE 17 ot uk/kiiotii

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