20 Jun 2018

GreenFields Present First EVO STIK NPL Pitch of the Year Awards

As official pitch partners of the EVO-STIK Northern Premier League, GreenFields launched the first Pitch of the Year Awards at the start of the season and crowned the winners at the league's annual End of Season Awards on 16 June at the Hilton, Blackpool.

With 80% of member clubs voting for their top pitches, GreenFields then shortlisted the three clubs per division with the highest nominations. The next step was for the experienced, professional GreenFields Grounds Team to visit the nine shortlisted clubs to carry out in-depth pitch inspections.  

During the pitch inspections the judges marked the surfaces on the following criteria:

Clegg TestsMoisture Tests
Visibility of LinesOverall Grass Coverage
Quality of Grass in Goal Mouth Areas     Overall Surface Stability                         

"The Grounds Team and I would both like to take this opportunity to thank the clubs for welcoming us so warmly and for enabling us to carry out our inspections of their pitches. We were incredibly impressed with the calibre of both the pitches and the dedication of every grounds person we met. There is so much hard work that goes into maintaining a pitch and we want to ensure that these passionate individuals and clubs receive the recognition they deserve."

Louise Henderson, Marketing Manager, GreenFields UK

The judges also interviewed each Groundsman on aspects such as fertiliser frequency and summer renovation plans as well as taking into account the staff used for pitch maintenance, the maintenance equipment owned by the club, the weather on the day of the visit, the geographical location and weather implications, the average hours of pitch usage and the level of irrigation in place at the club. Whilst visiting each club a series of photos were taken to document the inspections.

Well done to all the shortlisted clubs and the winners of the awards! The GreenFields Commercial Director, Paul Milton attended the event along with Marketing Manager, Louise Henderson to present the accolades to the winning, dedicated groundsmen, which included a trophy per club as well as £500 to spend on pitch maintenance materials or services from GreenFields:

PREMIER

WINNER: Whitby Town FC - Eric Wilson

2nd Place: Hednesford Town FC

3rd Place: Stourbridge FC


NORTH

WINNER: Trafford FC - Graham Foxall & Adrian Halliwell

2nd Place: Colwyn Bay FC 

3rd Place: Tadcaster Albion FC 


SOUTH

WINNER: Loughborough Dynamo FC - Joe Griffin & Jamie Cunningham

2nd Place: Belper Town FC

3rd Place: Stamford AFC


EVO-STIK Northern Premier League Chairman, Mark Harris commented: “The quality of playing surfaces is an essential part of any thriving Non-League football club and the volunteers who maintain them are cherished. The Pitch of the Year Awards complement the Football Association’s Groundsman of the Year scheme by giving further recognition to those pitches in the Northern Premier League that are already of an exceptional standard. We are delighted to be working with GreenFields on this initiative.”

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