Turfgrass growers gathered near Congleton in Cheshire recently for their spring meeting. The annual event, sponsored this year by Campey Turf Care, looked at two key areas. The impact of artificial surfaces and health & safety in the work place.
Richard Campey, from Campey's Turf Care, spoke of the importance of the natural environment and the positive attributes of natural surfaces. He also questioned the true costs of artificial surfaces and their maintenance to clubs and users.
Dave Saltman of Pitchcare looked at the potential benefits of properly maintained natural surfaces. He said that "With proper, professional, maintenance the huge number of local authority pitches in the UK could offer a fantastic resource to the national sports bodies. Facilities are often blamed and artificial surfaces are shown as the only answer. In my view properly maintained natural surfaces can offer a realistic, economic, solution to issues we have about developing our talent in many sports."
Dr Andrew Turner, HM Principal for Health & Safety, spoke on the important issue of safety on farms. The presentation focused on the importance of good policies and their implementation. He said that "It is vital that we not only point out where problems may occur, but also praise and reward good practice. It has been proven that is a much more effective way of improving performance across all areas of work, particularly Health & Safety." He also urged all growers to visit the HSE website and regularly download and update the free Farmwise book that is available to all. It can be found here.
During the day there were machinery demonstrations from Campey Turf Care of bed formers, mowers, vacuums and seed drills, which were very well received by the delegates.
TGA Chairman Robert Adcock said "Once again we have come away from another TGA meeting better informed. Our industry association has provided its members with insightful and useful information and on the same day been able to see the latest machinery available from one of the leading companies in the UK."