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Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists

Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists: After a year’s hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year Awards are returning for 2021, with the search on to find the country’s best up-and-coming greenkeepers.

Each year the awards enable BIGGA, the UK’s only membership association for golf greenkeepers, to work alongside turf maintenance equipment manufacturer Toro and distributor Reesink Turfcare to celebrate the next generation of talented and dedicated greenkeepers.

Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists

Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists

A record 49 nominees from across the United Kingdom participated in regional interviews. These candidates were nominated by their employers or colleague tutors and from those candidates a final 12 have been chosen to contest the grand final this September.

For the first time, the finals of the awards will take place at Celtic Manor Resort, providing an incredible backdrop to the event and giving the opportunity for the finalists to learn more and be inspired by the maintenance of the championship venue.

September’s event will be the 32nd staging of the Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year Awards and just the fifth time the Toro Young Student Greenkeeper of the Year Award, open to greenkeepers aged 21 or under, will take place. To be eligible to take part, candidates must be registered on a qualifying greenkeeping qualification and must be nominated by their course manager or college tutor.

The Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists are:

  1. Leon Brant, assistant greenkeeper at Wexham Park Golf Club
  2. John Le Cappelain, apprentice greenkeeper at Royal Jersey Golf Club
  3. Daryn Curtis, greenkeeper at Royal Mid-Surrey Golf Club
  4. Matthew McCreadie, greenkeeper at Daventry & District Golf Club
  5. Matthew Milligan, first assistant at Rudding Park Golf Club
  6. Michael Russell, greenkeeper and ecology manager at Preston Golf Club

The Toro Young Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists are:

  1. Rhian Barton, apprentice greenkeeper at The Wisley Golf Club
  2. Greg Manson, apprentice greenkeeper at Mortonhall Golf Club
  3. Callum Marjoribanks, apprentice greenkeeper at Mortonhall Golf Club
  4. Ross McKie, apprentice greenkeeper at St Andrews Links
  5. Will Pallister, apprentice greenkeeper at Cleckheaton & District Golf Club
  6. Cameron Shanks, apprentice greenkeeper at Bothwell Castle Golf Club

The Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year winner will receive an eight-week all expenses-paid scholarship to America when restrictions allow, including a six-week residential turf management study course at the University of Massachusetts, a trip to the Golf Industry Show in San Diego, California, and a visit to Toro manufacturing facilities.

The Toro Young Student Greenkeeper of the Year winner will receive a work experience placement at the exclusive Vidauban Golf Club in southern France. They will also receive a trip to Continue to Learn at BTME and enjoy a five-night package that includes hotel, four days of education, travel and £125 expenses, plus a Toro training voucher.

Sami Strutt, head of learning & development at BIGGA, said: “I was delighted to learn that a record number of student greenkeepers had been nominated for this year’s award, especially after the challenges of the past year. For so many employers and tutors to recognise the commitment of the students, despite the difficulties we have all faced, is testament to what a wonderful industry we are working in. There can be no better introduction to the greenkeeping community than a nomination for these awards and, these 12 finalists should be incredibly proud of everything they have achieved thus far.

“Taking place in the grand setting of Celtic Manor Resort, this year’s finals will be unlike any other and I can’t wait to meet everyone this September for what stands to be a wonderful few days. My thanks go to Toro and Reesink Turfcare for their continued support and also thanks go to everyone who took part or nominated a candidate this year.”

David Cole, Reesink Turfcare managing director and award sponsor, said: “From the interviewing process to identify our finalists, we can take that the greenkeeping profession continues to be in bright and focused hands. Reesink Turfcare and Toro’s long support of this educational award is constantly rewarded by the enthusiasm, career passion and commitment to personal development that we come across every year. That is the significant element that sustains these long-standing, career-enhancing awards.”

The Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year finals take place at Celtic Manor Resort on Monday 6 and Tuesday 7 September 2021.

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2020 GEA finalists announced

2020 GEA finalists announced: The shortlisted finalists for the 2020 Golf Environment Awards (GEAs) have been announced.

The GEAs, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2020, recognises golf clubs and individuals that strive to undertake environmental best practice. Past finalists’ projects have ranged from simple but effective, to grand scale schemes.

2020 GEA finalists announced

Ecology consultants from STRI spent August and September visiting qualifying clubs that applied for the awards before painstakingly whittling them down to 17 finalists and five Home Unions finalists.

Four finalists have been named in three GEA categories – Conservation Greenkeeper of Year, Outstanding Environmental Project, Environmental Golf Course of Year and Operation Pollinator, while five golf clubs have been selected for the Environmental Golf Course of Year category. Another five worthy finalists have been identified in the new Home Unions National Awards category.

Representatives from the finalists will attend the glittering awards ceremony on 22 January 2020 at the Crown Hotel in Harrogate, during BTME week.

Golf Environment Awards judge, Rowan Rumball, said: “This year was exceptionally difficult, and we have had some amazing and very worthy entrants. I have seen some superb projects and many clubs are now looking beyond the confines of their own club boundaries.”

Head of Ecology at STRI, Bob Taylor, said: “I cannot believe it’s 25 years since we first set up the Golf Environment awards. Moreover, the awards have become the leading accolade for ecological and environmental excellence within the golf industry. Many golf greenkeepers tell me the awards represent something to aspire to, they provide an opportunity to market the good works they do. For me the awards represent a growing community that all come together at the awards celebrations discussing works and passing on ideas. Anyone is welcome to attend the awards, and one thing is certain you will leave inspired by the great work clubs are doing.”

All finalists receive free entry into the Foundation Award in Amenity Horticulture course, recognised by BASIS, and managed by STRI, as well as CPD points. The lucky winners of the GEAs will also be able to enjoy a European Golf & Environment Trip of a Lifetime to Portugal.

The Golf Environment Awards 2020 finalists are:

Environmental Golf Course of the Year

  • Warrington Golf Club
  • Kington Golf Club
  • Saunton Golf Club
  • Effingham Golf Club
  • Nairn Dunbar Golf Links

Conservation Greenkeeper of the Year

  • John Milne – Rothes Golf Club
  • Neil Sherman – Ipswich Golf Club (Purdis Heath)
  • Richard Mullen – Banchory Golf Club
  • Les Rae – Montrose Golf Club

Outstanding Environmental Project of the Year

  • Trevose Golf & Country Club
  • Dundonald Links
  • Craignure Golf Club
  • Clitheroe Golf Club

Operation Pollinator

  • Cumberwell Park
  • Banchory Golf Club
  • Ufford Park Woodbridge
  • St Andrews Links Trust

Home Unions National Awards

  • Market Harborough Golf Club
  • Scotscraig Golf Club
  • Ashburnham Golf Club
  • Bingley St Ives Golf Club
  • Diss Golf Club

The winners will be announced at the Golf Environment Awards Ceremony on Wednesday 22h January 2020, at The Crown Hotel in Harrogate. Tickets for the awards, which includes a three-course meal and drinks, go on general sale on 14 Nov. Please email enquiries@strigroup.com for further details.

STRI would like to thank all the golf clubs that entered but didn’t make the final shortlist.

A huge thank you also goes to Golf Environment Award partners and sponsors who continue to support and promote the awards year-on-year, without them the awards simply would not be possible. The R&A, BIGGA, The Golf Club Manager, Tillers TurfRansomes JacobsenWiedenmann, Aquatrols and Syngenta.

For further details about The Golf Environment Awards and how to purchase tickets please visit https://golfenvironmentawards.com/

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Finalists For IOG Awards Confirmed

Finalists For IOG Awards Confirmed: The finalists have been announced for this year’s prestigious Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) Industry Awards which acknowledge the passion, dedication and challenges faced by grounds staff, volunteers and professionals across all levels of sport.

This year’s finalists, including some international entries, for the awards are:

Finalists For IOG Awards Confirmed

IOG Toro Most Promising Sports Turf Student 

Callum Allsop, Leicester City FC;

Daniel Hill, Harlequin FC;

Lee Morgan, Arnold House School, London.

IOG Rigby Taylor/Top Green Young Grounds Person

Pierre Bagot, Stade Rennais, France;

Ollie Deeming, Northampton Saints;

Nick Pepper, Gloucestershire CCC.

IOG Volunteer Sports Grounds Team/Individual

Andy Cambridge, Foxton FC, Cambridgeshire;

Trubshaw Cross Ladsandads, Newcastle, Staffordshire.

IOG NGB Community/Grassroots Sports Club Grounds Team/Individual 

Harborough Town FC, Leicestershire;

Norton Sports Charity, Stockton-on-Tees.

The NGB award is sponsored by the AELTC (All England Lawn Tennis Club), ECB (the England and Wales Cricket Board), The FA (Football Association), the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association), the Premier League,  the RFU (Rugby Football Union) and the RFL (Rugby Football League).

IOG AMS Robotics Public Sector Sports Grounds Team 

Prestige Grounds Ltd, Wiltshire;

Yeovil Recreation Centre, Somerset.

IOG Bowling Grounds Team/Individual

Polly Bowls Club, Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire;

North Mymms Bowls Club, Hertfordshire.

IOG SCH Supplies Best Managed Artificial Surface

Ipswich Town FC;

University of Warwick.

IOG Ransomes Environmental and Ecology Strategy 

Cardiff University;

City Football Academy, Manchester.

IOG Headland Amenity Professional Cricket Grounds Team 

Essex CCC;

Sussex CCC.

IOG Cub Cadet Infinicut Professional Tennis Courts Grounds Team

All England Lawn Tennis Club, Wimbledon;

Devonshire Park, Eastbourne.

IOG John Deere Professional Horse Racing Grounds Team
Huntingdon Racecourse;

Redcar Racecourse;

Warwick Racecourse.

IOG Professional Rugby Football League Grounds Team

Castleford Tigers, West Yorkshire;

Leigh Sports Village, Greater Manchester.

IOG Compo Expert Professional Rugby Football Union Grounds Team
Gloucester Rugby;

Northampton Saints.

IOG Professional Football Grounds Team
For English Leagues 1 & 2, National League, National League North/South, Scottish Championship & Leagues 1 & 2, Ireland & Wales Professional Leagues.

Charlton Athletic FC, London;

Colchester United, Essex;

Swindon Town FC.

IOG SGL Professional Football Grounds Team 

For Premier League, Championship and Scottish Premier League.

Croke Park, Dublin;

Leicester City FC;

Tottenham Hotspur FC.

IOG Redexim Charterhouse/Kubota University/College Grounds Team 

Cardiff University;

Nottingham University.

IOG Growth Products Independent School Grounds Team
Merchiston Castle School, Edinburgh;

Rydal Penrhos School, Colwyn Bay, Wales.

IOG SISGrass International Award

Andy Cole, iTurf Management

Alan Ferguson, FIFA;

Dean Gilasbey, ProPitch Management.

Independent judging at each venue will now take place.

Two awards will be presented on the night – at the IOG Industry Awards dinner hosted by BBC TV presenter Dan Walker on Wednesday October 30 at The Vox, located in Resorts World at the Birmingham NEC, on the evening of the first day of the SALTEX exhibition:

The IOG Grassmaster Outstanding Achievement Award, and the IOG Ransomes/DLF Alex R Millar Award – to the person chosen as the outstanding winner across all award categories.

Commenting, IOG chief executive Geoff Webb says: “With so many memorable sporting events to celebrate this year, the IOG Industry Awards’ shortlist rightly includes the grounds teams that have created the playing surfaces across all sports for such sporting drama. In addition, of course, this year’s awards also recognise the efforts of grounds people at all levels and at sporting venues of all sizes.

“This is the 11th consecutive year that the awards have uniquely provided a national stage for the achievements of everyone involved in groundscare and we should applaud everyone who took the time to enter as well as those who have reached the shortlist.”

Visit www.iog.org/awards for more details. The IOG reserves the right to enter/shortlist any application into the most relevant category(ies) based on sport(s), size and resources.

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Golf Environment Awards Finalists Announced

Golf Environment Awards Finalists Announced: STRI is delighted to announce the finalists for the 2019 Golf Environment Awards (GEAs), recognising golf clubs and individuals that strive to undertake environmental best practice.

Over 30 longlisted clubs were visited earlier in the year by STRI ecology consultants, Bob Taylor and Rowan Rumball, and painstakingly whittled down to 17 finalists, including one club from Switzerland.

Golf Environment Awards Finalists Announced

Four finalists have been named in three GEA categories – Conservation Greenkeeper of Year, Outstanding Environmental Project and Operation Pollinator. However, such was the competition in the Environmental Golf Course of Year category the shortlist has been increased to five finalists.

Representatives from the finalists will attend the glittering awards ceremony on 23 January at the Crown Hotel in Harrogate, during BTME week.

Golf Environment Awards judge, Rowan Rumball, said: “This is my first year managing the GEAs, and it has been a fantastic, but challenging, experience. It has been humbling and such a privilege to see first-hand all the good work golf clubs are striving to achieve.

“The range of projects has been massively diverse, and the scale is inspiring. Golf is truly leading the way when it comes to ecological and environmental commitment.”

The GEA provides the platform from which the golf industry can demonstrate environmental excellence in all its forms. This has been demonstrated by past finalists and can range from relatively simple but effective projects, to grand scale schemes.

All finalists receive free entry into the Foundation Award in Amenity Horticulture course, recognised by BASIS, as well as CPD points, and the lucky winners will be able to enjoy a European Golf & Environment Trip of a Lifetime to Portugal.

The Golf Environment Awards 2019 finalists are:

 Environmental Golf Course of the Year

Aldeburgh Golf Club
Ipswich Golf Club
Minchinhampton Golf Club
Warrington Golf Club
St Andrews Links

Conservation Greenkeeper of the Year

Les Rae – Montrose Golf Links
Phil Stain – Notts Golf Club
Mark Broughton – Aldeburgh Golf Club
Neil Sherman – Ipswich Golf Club

Outstanding Environmental Project of the Year

Wylihof Golf Club
Cotswold Hills Golf Club
Hallamshire Golf Club
Woking Golf Club

Operation Pollinator

Wylihof Golf Club
Banchory Golf Club
Wigan Golf Club
Corhampton Golf Club

The winners will be announced at the Golf Environment Awards Ceremony on Wednesday 23h January 2019, at The Crown Hotel in Harrogate. Tickets for the awards, which includes a three-course meal and drinks, go on general sale on 16 Nov. Please email enquiries@strigroup.com for further details.

STRI would like to thank all the golf clubs that entered but didn’t make the final shortlist.

A huge thank you also goes to Golf Environment Award partners and sponsors who continue to support and promote the awards year-on-year, without them the awards simply would not be possible.

The R&A, BIGGA, The Golf Club Manager, Tillers TurfRansomes JacobsenWiedenmann, Aquatrols, Syngenta

For further details about The Golf Environment Awards please visit https://golfenvironmentawards.com/

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Innovation Award Finalists Announced

Innovation Award Finalists Announced: The three finalists have been announced for the Innovation Award at SALTEX 2018, with Reesink Turfcare, Sherriff Amenity and McConnel competing to get their hands on the prize.

After making its successful debut at last year’s show, the SALTEX 2018 Innovation Award attracted even more entries from various exhibitors across the globe and included a wide variety of high-quality products, services and equipment.

Innovation Award Finalists Announced

Judged by an independent panel of industry experts it was decided that the Toro Outcross 9060 from Reesink Turfcare, PrecisionPro from Sherriff Amenity and a product that cannot yet be named from McConnel were the stand out entries.

The final three companies will now take to the stage on the first day of SALTEX in the all new Innovation Hub (stand K021) from 11.30am to 12.35pm. A representative from each will take place to offer a great insight into their respective innovations and answer questions from Innovation Hub host Kevin Lynch – a former referee and current football speaker.

The winner’s ceremony will then commence in the Innovation Hub at 2:30pm where the overall winner will be announced.

Innovation Hub visitors can also expect interviews with industry experts and those at the forefront of new groundscare innovations and listen to research and trial work findings. Furthermore, a number of key speakers will take to the stage to discuss and explore current groundscare trends.

Kevin Lynch and IOG CEO Geoff Webb will kick-start proceedings at 11:00am on the first day of SALTEX by commenting on what most would agree has been a golden period in innovation in sports turf over the last 10-15 years.

A panel debate featuring Horticulture Week’s Sally Drury, IOG regional pitch advisor Rob Donnelly and IOG learning programme architect Chris Gray will take place shortly after. The panel will be providing an update on new technology in groundscare and will have their say on what key developments they feel have had a significant impact on the industry.

It is no surprise that digital media is being utilised by many within the industry and this topic will be explored in the next session.

The loss of important active ingredients is becoming more frequent than ever and a number of products are being taken off the market, especially in regards to pest management – so an expert panel will be exploring alternative solutions.

This will be followed by sessions on what’s new in grass cultivars, cordless machinery and robotics.

Reinforced pitches for cricket and tennis will be the final topic of the day with turf consultant Alex Vickers, ECB pitch advisor Chris Wood and Neil Stubley from the AELTC – who will discuss their views.

The Innovation Hub will conclude with the SALTEX 2018 Innovation Award winner’s ceremony.

The programme of events will be replicated on day two of SALTEX.

SALTEX 2018 is free to attend. To register your attendance and beat the queues visit www.iogsaltex.com

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