Nottingham Trent University comprises of 3 campuses; Clifton, City Campus and Brackenhurst. The University's Clifton and Brackenhurst campuses have been awarded a Green Flag, two of only nineteen university campuses recognised nationally in 2015/16. Judges were particularly impressed by the outdoor sports facilities, including the all-weather artificial pitches. Helping to keep the synthetic surfaces at their best is Replay Maintenance.
Landscape Services Coordinator Alan Horgan has been at the University for 32 years and is in charge of maintaining a range of landscape tasks including natural and artificial surfaces, supported by a team of 12. NTU has a sand-dressed surface primarily used for hockey and 5-a-side and a 3G pitch which plays host to rugby and football.
The synthetic surfaces are relatively high use throughout the year by students and external clubs. This workload means that the team carry out a maintenance programme of brushing, debris removal and checking for damage and organic growth 3-4 times a week. "During term time we often only get small windows in which we can get on and do the maintenance, a little and often approach works best for us." Following the 3G's installation in 2014, and an existing maintenance agreement expiring, Alan shopped around for a new maintenance provider which is when he called in Replay Maintenance.
"I got a few recommendations from fellow universities and knew Replay had a strong reputation in the sector so asked them to come in to assess maintaining both the 3G and sand-dressed pitches. The main aim is to protect our investment and maintain the safety and integrity of the surfaces. Nick Harris came in and assessed the carpets, answered our questions, delivered a report and recommended a Revive Service Agreement which we were happy to take." This means Replay come in and conduct their Revive process 6 times a year. Alan considers this as more of a surface "overhaul", sweeping, cleaning and de-compacting. "It takes Replay just half a day on each surface, meaning the pitches don't have to be blocked out for significant periods of time thus keeping any disruption to an absolute minimum."
After each visit, Replay create a report on the pitch conditions which Alan finds really helpful. "It's great to get an objective perspective from the Replay team - it's reassuring that between us we're doing the right work and in turn providing the quality surfaces our users expect."
Image: The 3G and sand-dressed artificial playing surfaces at Nottingham Trent University