Last week John Moverley, Chairman of the Amenity Forum, chaired an amenity turf grass event held at Royal Holloway University. The event was very well attended and followed on from a national conference late in 2014. It bought together key organisations and individuals from the amenity turf sector to consider how best to achieve an integrated approach and the meeting resulted in agreement to establish a Turf Research Foundation.
There is an increasing focus on integrated approaches to weed, pest and disease control, driven by recent legislation such as the Sustainable Use and Water Framework EU directives. Integrated approaches involve a combination of methods including; mechanical, cultural, biological and genetic controls, alongside chemical use. Not only can this approach satisfy future requirements, it can also be the most effective.
The Turf Research Foundation will raise funds to finance or part-finance research projects, co-ordinate and communicate existing research and develop education and training opportunities. The emphasis is to promote new & existing research of all aspects of integrated control methods with a key aim of promoting understanding and disseminating research, so as to ensure the very best links between researchers and those actively engaged in such tasks within the sector.
John Moverley said 'The Amenity forum is the voluntary initiative for the sector promoting best practice in weed, pest and disease control. We very much welcome this initiative to further develop knowledge and its dissemination across all aspects of amenity turf management. It is a great opportunity and one which could have a major impact'
Work on the project has been progressed thus far by a small group led by John Moverley as Chairman of the Amenity Forum. Others in the group are Professor Alan Gange (Royal Holloway), Steve Isaacs (R & A) and Russell Seymour (MCC). The plan is now for an expanded group to further develop the plans and bring forward firm proposals.
The integrated approach will feature at the Amenity forum conference being held at Leicester on October 16th. Further information is available on the Amenity Forum website, www.amenityforum.co.uk and to book a place contact firstname.lastname@example.org