Head Groundsman/Gardener

Head Groundsman/Gardener

Head Groundsman/Gardener

Rydal Penrhos School is seeking to appoint an experienced, well qualified and forward-thinking Head Groundsman. The successful candidate will be responsible for the provision across Rydal Penrhos of playing surfaces, sports pitches and other grounds areas to the highest possible standard.


Reporting to the Estates Manager and Liaising with First in Faculty of Health & Wellbeing (with regards to sporting fixtures and pitch use) the successful candidate will manage a small team of grounds and garden staff to ensure the cost effective delivery of services and end user satisfaction.

The appointed Head Groundsman will have excellent Grounds management knowledge and will possess appropriate Horticultural and Sports Turf Management qualifications. This is a full-time appointment and a suitably attractive benefits package is available, including a competitive salary commensurate with the successful candidate’s skills and experience.

The closing date for applications is 24 September 2021

Interviews will be held on TBC

The School reserves the right to commence or complete the recruitment process at any time prior to the closing date.

Application forms to be emailed to Kay Walters

Rydal Penrhos is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and the successful applicant will be subject to child protection screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and an enhanced disclosure through the DBS.

Deputy Head Greenkeeper

Deputy Head Greenkeeper – Full Time

Deputy Head Greenkeeper

Deputy Head Greenkeeper

Airlinks Golf Course, West London

Salary:  Competitive

Airlinks Golf Course is a new Inland links golf course located close to Heathrow and is currently in the middle of a major renovation project, with a complete redesign of all 18 holes. The course is in the growing-in phase and is due to open in 2022.

The Opportunity

We now require a Deputy Head Greenkeeper to join our team.. There is a great opportunity to gain  project management experience, and you will have a chance to add your own input and ideas to the course as it leads to opening. A brand new state of the art range is to be installed along with updating the machinery and building a new team.

The role is hands-on requiring a combination of ‘golf course’ understanding, excellent interpersonal and reporting skills, and a passion to produce first class customer service.

If you believe you have the necessary knowledge and experience with a passion to match then we hope to hear from you.

This is a permanent full-time role working 40 hours per week including early starts and weekends.

The Candidate

Essential skills/qualifications:

  • Minimum of 2 years greenkeeping experience
  • NVQ Level 2/3 in sports turf management
  • Work efficiently with exceptional attention to detail
  • Competent in the use of a variety of golf machinery
  • Help lead renovation projects and construction works including bunkers and paths
  • Pro-active and forthcoming with new ideas and suggestions
  • Good knowledge of health and safety

Desirable skills/qualifications:

  • Spray qualifications PA1, PA2 & PA6
  • Grow in experience

What can Glendale Golf offer you?

  • Competitive salary
  • Generous annual leave
  • Complimentary use of all Glendale Golf courses
  • Free gym membership for you and a nominated person
  • Employee health cash plan
  • Employee discount portal – discounts on travel bookings, high street vouchers, gift cards, cinema tickets, days out, leisure activities and your day to day spending
  • Cycle to Work scheme
  • Pension Scheme
  • Career progression
  • Training and development, Bigga CPD

Glendale Golf is a well-established business that is continuously growing. Successful applicants can look forward to joining a company that can offer career prospects and believes in investing in its people.

How to Apply

Apply with CV and cover letter to

Head of Sports Grounds

We are seeking to recruit a talented, experienced and knowledgeable individual into the role of Head of Grounds at Stratford Sports Club. The Club boasts over 1400 members across seven sports – cricket, squash, boxing, snooker, tennis, hockey and athletics. Our club welcomes a wide range of people from across the area, with the beautiful surroundings and clubhouse being the heartbeat of our community.

Head of Sports Grounds

Head of Sports Grounds

This fantastic opportunity gives the successful candidate the chance to manage and develop our excellent cricket (x2) and tennis (x4 needlepoint and x3 clay) facilities and surrounds.

Job Description

You will lead the management of Stratford Sports Club cricket, tennis, general grounds and recycling team. You will lead a team undertaking both responsive and planned maintenance duties, executing workmanship to a high standard. You will proactively manage your team assisting all others in order to maximise the efficiency of the department as a whole.

The role will be key in delivering a culture of continuous improvement, and through high standards of service, enhancing the member and community experience.

In addition, this role will manage the grounds team to ensure tasks are carried out in accordance with Health & Safety legislation, and will oversee the development and training of this team.

As Head of Grounds, you will report to the Director of Operations on a day-to-day basis. Have regular contact with the Director of Cricket and Tennis and the Head Coaches of Cricket and Tennis, as and when required.

Key Responsibilities

  • Preparation of playing surfaces to ECB & MCCL Premier League Standard
  • Be proficient in assessing, managing annual and general maintenance of all sports playing surfaces.
  • Continually seek improvement and efficiency of service provision
  • Be proficient in assessing, managing and where necessary completing general maintenance of gardens/grounds (e.g. grass cutting, tree and shrub maintenance, hard and soft landscaping works, weeding, pruning seasonal bedding displays & decorations, recycling activities, clearance of litter, snow, ice and leaves and any general gardening duties, maintaining acceptable productivity outputs and quality of workmanship in accordance with industry practices
  • You will have overall responsibility for safe working practices, maximising productivity, ensuring the quality of the workmanship, reporting activities and all personnel management aspects of the Grounds teams
  • You will ensure that appropriate training is identified and implemented for the team, motivating staff to continually develop their skills. You will provide advice and guidance to direct reports and undertake development reviews and manage your team positively and provide leadership in your area of responsibility in order to ensure maximum contribution by your team.

You will contribute towards estates budget management by:

  • Monitoring and reporting on compliance with agreed budgets
  • Contributing towards decision making processes in relation to plants and equipment
  • Maximise efficiency in all material purchases
  • Endeavouring to maximise efficiency in all departmental purchasing
  • Reporting in detail and accounting for all expenses
  • You will develop, deliver and maintain strategies allowing maximum efficiency at minimum cost in relation to:
  • Transport
  • Plants, equipment and tools

Materials expectations

  • You will analyse, monitor, evaluate and strive to improve the performance of all staff and procedures managed by you
  • Undertake duties in accordance with established Health and Safety regulations and University Health and Safety policies including the assessment of risks relating to the works to be undertaken. Lead and monitor all activities within area of responsibility ensuring team compliance with all Health and Safety requirements
  • Ensure your team deliver on all ground’s activities in relation to special events e.g. sports awards and garden parties/outdoor events
  • You will have overall responsibility for contractor management within your area of expertise and effectively manage their service provision in terms of quality, effectiveness, value and health and safety. You will also ensure that your team engage positively with external contractors
  • Lead the development of improvement and maintenance regimes throughout the estate
  • Lead collaborative discussions regarding improvements to service delivery or efficiencies
  • Manage you and your team’s time efficiently and effectively
  • Ensure grounds maintenance teams undertake maintenance requests
  • Engage and interact with management systems as required
  • Maintain excellent housekeeping within all aspects of your areas of responsibility.
  • Participate in all relevant training courses as and when required.
  • Assist with the identification of potential energy saving initiatives
  • Drive Stratford Sports Club transport as required
  • Liaise and work with other professional and trades personnel as required
  • Operate a personal radio/communication equipment as required
  • Ensure you are up to date on the latest Health & Safety legislation and be able to manage all aspects of H&S including risk assessments
  • Be a self-motivated, independent thinker with a strong team ethic
  • It is essential that the successful candidate holds a full driving licence.
  • This role will involve working some evenings and weekends.

Special Requirements:

Due to operational requirements, there may be occasions when the role holder will be required to work overtime.

On occasion you may be required to attend emergency call outs.

Please note that this job description is not exhaustive, and the role holder may be required to undertake other relevant duties commensurate with the grading of the post.  Activities may be subject to amendment over time as the role develops and/or priorities and requirements evolve.

Qualifications ·         Good general education

·         Relevant technical qualifications e.g. craft/city & guilds/NVQ Level 3/HNC

·         Desirable

·         HND/NVQ 4 or degree in relevant technical area.

·         Equipment Certification (e.g. forklifts, tractor etc.)

·         Relevant health and Safety Qualification (e.g. IOSH, NE)

·         Enhanced horticultural qualification above NVQ3

·         Management qualification


Experience & Knowledge





·         Previous experience of working to tight deadlines

·         Several years’ post qualification experience

·         Extensive experience of successfully managing staff in a similar role

·         Extensive knowledge of relevant Health and Safety legislation and demonstrable experience of day-to-day implementation of Health and Safety practices

·         Previous experience of implementing and operating grounds maintenance schedules.

·         Excellent IT knowledge and awareness, particularly in relation to Microsoft packages

·         Previous experience of successful budget management

·         Previous experience of analysing and reporting of team activities

·         Experience of working with and developing skills of apprentices

·         Demonstrable previous experience of continuous improvement processes

·         Environmental and ecological experience related to estates management

·         Excellent knowledge of multi-sports team playing surface requirements and related sports surface maintenance regimes

·         Good general awareness of and previous experience of successful recycling processes and practice.


Competencies and skills ·         Excellent knowledge of horticultural principles and gardening operations

·         Excellent knowledge of vehicles, horticultural machinery/equipment

·         Ability to work on your own initiative

·         Effective planning and prioritising skills, as an individual and for a team of people

·         Excellent team leader

·         Full valid driving licence

·         Excellent problem-solving skills

·         Excellent customer care skills

Personal Attributes & Competencies ·         Flexibility in working hours to meet operational need

·         Ability to work outside in difficult terrain; lift heavy tools; work under pressure in order to deliver outcomes to demanding deadlines

·         Excellent attention to detail


In return we will offer you:

  • a competitive salary for the right candidate
  • 25 days annual leave
  • 6% contributory company pension scheme
  • a supportive and professional working environment
  • an annual salary review
  • 10% discount for food and drinks at the Bar/Restaurant

If you think you have what it takes to succeed in this role. Please submit your cover letter and CV to by Thursday 9 September 2021. 

We reserve the right to bring forward the closing date if we receive a large number of suitable applications.

At Stratford Sports Club people are at the heart of what we do and drive our success. We embrace diversity and actively seek to attract people with unique backgrounds and perspectives. We believe that an inclusive, collaborative workplace is pivotal to our success and supports the potential and growth of all employees.


45 hours per week, working any 5 days from 7 by arrangement with your Manager. Working weekends as required.

ICL central to performance at Hogs Head

ICL central to performance at Hogs Head: David Daly, Golf Course Superintendent at Hogs Head Golf Club in Ireland, has long relied on a wide range of ICL products, from the initial grow-in to now helping him maintain the award-winning 18-hole course to a consistently high level.

David started in the role when it was formerly known as Skellig Bay Golf Club. That was before the club was bought by current owners Bryan Marsal and Tony Alvarez II. What came next was an incredible transformation which has since seen the course voted “Ireland’s Best Course” and “Best New International Course” by

ICL central to performance at Hogs Head

ICL central to performance at Hogs Head

Designed by the highly regarded Robert Trent Jones Jr., David was heavily involved in the plans and the grow-in period which took place from 2016 to mid-2017. Utilising the experience he gained in his previous roles at Waterville Golf Links and Killeen Castle, and by working closely with Keith Boland from Goldcrop, David thoroughly researched the best products to use for the grow-in.

The products he selected were predominantly from ICL, and they have continued to be central to his yearly turf management plan ever since.

It is safe to say that Vitalnova Stressbuster, which he uses to pre-condition the turf against stress, is one of his most favoured products.

“I like the instant impact the product provides,” he said. “Especially the immediate natural green colour response. The simplicity of use, the ‘fully-loaded’ liquid formulation (the product contains a wetting agent, biostimulants, amino acids, macro nutrients, micro nutrients and iron) and that it is so tank-mixable.”

David mixes Stressbuster with H2Pro TriSmart, PGRs and seaweeds before he applies it monthly from March through to September for best results.

At the start of each year David works with his team to create a yearly turf management plan, and although the weather on the south west coast of Ireland means the plan often has to adapt, ICL products are a common feature regardless.

In 2020 there was 2,000mm of rainfall, but David also has to contend with long periods of drought. It is for these reasons that David needs a proven water management product, and he chooses to use H2Pro TriSmart which he says, “ticks all the boxes.”

TriSmart’s unique triple-active formulation provides great control over moisture management. Containing three water management technologies, it provides effective water penetration, even water spread through the rootzone and improves the water holding capacity of sandy rootzones. David applies TriSmart monthly to his tees and greens at 10L/ha.

When it comes to feeding, he relies on Sierrablen 28-5-5 – a granular fertilizer which provides sufficient nutrition for the entire main growing season in just a single application.

“It is the Rolls Royce of granular controlled release fertilisers,” he said. “The controlled release formulation of this product is key, especially with so much rainfall throughout the year.”

David uses Sierrablen on his fairways and green surrounds, and because he has a short season, starting in May, Sierrablen’s longevity of 5-6 months gives him a certain peace of mind.

Aside from the spectacular golf course, Hogs Head Golf Club also boasts a stunning clubhouse and accommodations consisting of a luxurious lodge and multiple golf cottages. Around the clubhouse and accommodations, David uses Gronamic, an organo-mineral fertiliser which he says has “transformed the areas.”

Please contact ICL on 01473 237100 or visit or if you are in Ireland.

For more news and insightful views, you can follow ICL on Twitter @ICL_Turf

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Mansfield Sand head to BTME

Mansfield Sand head to BTME: Mansfield Sand will feature a wide range of innovative products for sports, landscaping and equestrian uses on Stand 126 in the Blue Zone at BTME 2020.

Pioneers in the development and production of premium quality silica sand-based products for over 170 years, Mansfield Sand is the market leader in supplying to some of the most prestigious sporting venues across the UK and Europe.

Mansfield Sand head to BTME

Here is a taster of just some of the products that could well make a significant improvement to your turf.

Mansil Silica Sand Sports Range

Sourced from the company’s Two Oaks Quarry in Mansfield where the Mansil range of Silica Sands is produced. These products are predominantly used in the construction and maintenance of a wide range of sports surfaces – from winter sports pitches, golf courses, bowling greens and all amenity turf areas.

Top Dressing

Produced for the fine turf market, Mansfield Sand’s Soil Top Dressing is a manufactured homogenous product made from their own premium silica sands combined with top quality soils. All passed through a sterilising unit, over a 3mm screen to produce an easy to spread, stone and pebble free dressing. Mansfield Sand can also produce bespoke dressing blends and combine soil amendments into any product.

Sand Soil Rootzones

Mansfield Sand understands exactly what is needed to achieve the surface that turf managers require week-in-week-out and that is why their rootzones contain only the best quality materials to meet that demand. For renovation or construction, the company’s superior rootzone blend Mansil 40 Silica Sand with a quality screened topsoil, guarantees the perfect start.

Sand Compost Rootzones

A range of premium quality sand organic material blends which are perfect for creating a rootzone where an organic rich material is required within the profile, aiding in the retention of nutrients whilst providing increased drought resistance.

Reinforced Rootzone

A range of reinforced rootzones developed to obtain greater use from natural turf surfaces whilst maintaining the high standards demanded by today’s sports industry and meeting the expectations of ground staff at all levels. Mansfield Sand’s reinforcement technology provides stability and durability to all sand dominated rootzones allowing the pitch to remain free draining and consistent over the whole surface.

Products include Fibre Reinforced Rootzone – reinforced with polypropylene fibres; Fibrelastic Rootzone – reinforced with polypropylene fibres and flexible elastane fibres and Fibresand – particularly advantageous when grass cover has been reduced due to heavy usage and wear during the winter period.

This is just a snapshot of what visitors can expect from Mansfield Sand at BTME 2020. If you are involved in groundscare, sports turf, amenities, estates or green-space management, then ensure that a trip to Stand 126 in the Blue Zone is on your BTME 2020 agenda.

For more information visit

You can also follow Mansfield Sand on Twitter – @MansfieldSand

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Twickenham’s New Head Groundsperson

Twickenham’s New Head Groundsperson: The RFU has appointed Jim Buttar as Twickenham Stadium’s head groundsperson, a role he began on 2nd September. 

Jim has over 20 years’ experience in grounds maintenance. He was head groundsman at Tottenham Hotspur’s White Hart Lane for 11 years and deputy head for three years during which time he was awarded the Institute of Groundmanship (IOG) Premier League Groundsman of the Year two years in a row.

Twickenham's New Head Groundsman

He more recently worked as an International Sports Turf Development Manager for Pro Pitch. This role saw Jim provide consultancy to leading sports associations and organisations in the delivery of major events and tournaments including the UEFA Champions League Final in 2018 and 2019, the Euro 2020 host venue in Budapest plus the FIFA Club World Cup and Asian Cup 2019.

Jim brings a wealth of experience, particularly around new technologies and the effect of pitch surfaces on player performance and recovery.  Jim will use his extensive knowledge of pitch maintenance to support grassroots rugby clubs via the Rugby Groundsmen Connected network.

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Mulching Head Success Story

Mulching Head Success Story: SW Landscapes in the South West and South Wales provide grounds maintenance services to small and large customers in both the public and private sectors including property management companies, retail parks, industrial estates, parish councils, housing associations, residential developments, schools and local authorities.

The company is, like many, giving serious thought to carbon footprint management, and for one particular Housing Association they undertook a joint consultation to assess ways of accomplishing a reduction.

Mulching Head Success Story

A fundamental point was grass collection; the housing association understandably wanted their grass looking its best, and a successful approach put forward by Will Stops was the use of a mulching head fitted to a SCAG Tiger Cat ride-on mower, supplied by STM Co Ltd.

Will knew the SCAG make from past experience and has always found them sturdy, reliable and impressive.

Equally impressive have been the results from this exercise. Importantly, the Housing Association have been pleased with the look of the grass, and for SW Landscapes they easily show the benefits: previously they would take two vehicles and three men – and the extra vehicle was only just enough for the grasscuttings. Now they take two men and one van – the Transit that the SCAG Tiger Cat neatly fits into. They mow a little more frequently to keep the mulching process as effective as possible, but it’s a quick cut, because the grass isn’t too long.

The whole venture has proved to be, in Will Stops’ own words: a “win-win situation”; a happy customer and clearly identifiable efficiency savings in time, fuel and carbon emissions.

SCAG machines are available through the STM dealership network. To find your nearest dealer ring 01789 488450, email or look at our website

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Meet Mowing Challenges Head On

Meet Mowing Challenges Head On: The unique 50:50 articulated steering makes the Park Pro Front cut mowers agile, perfect for large complex areas where manoeuvrability is tight around rocks, trees, corners and confined spaces.  4-wheel drive, power steering, electric height of cut and a range of other professional features come as standard.  The RAC Quick Connect system allows you to switch implements in minutes.  No tools are needed – just click them on and off!  With a selection of seasonal implements ranging from sweepers, snow blades, flail mowers, rakes and carts these mowers are truly versatile.

Visit for more information.

Meet Mowing Challenges Head On

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New Lords Head Groundsman

New Lords Head Groundsman: MCC has confirmed that Karl McDermott has been appointed as the new Head Groundsman at Lord’s.

McDermott, who will join MCC from Hampshire County Cricket Club, will replace Mick Hunt, who is retiring from the role after 49 seasons.

New Lords Head Groundsman

After beginning his career as Assistant Groundsman at Clontarf Cricket Club in Dublin, McDermott took on the Head Groundsman role in 1997, ahead of the venue hosting an ICC World Cup Fixture in 1999.

He spent seventeen years at Clontarf, working on numerous international and domestic fixtures and winning the European ICC Groundsman of the Year award in 2007, before moving to Worcestershire as Assistant Groundsman.

He then took up post at the Ageas Bowl where he was initially appointed Deputy Head Groundsman in 2009, ahead of the ground’s inaugural Test Match in 2011 between England and Sri Lanka.

McDermott became Head Groundsman in 2016 and most recently presided over England’s victory over India, the third Test Match to be held at Hampshire’s headquarters.

John Stephenson, MCC Assistant Secretary (Cricket) said: “After a rigorous recruitment process, we are delighted that Karl has accepted the role of Head Groundsman at Lord’s. He is very well respected throughout the game, having spent the past nine years producing top quality pitches at the Ageas Bowl.

“Karl emerged from a competitive field as someone who will be able to maintain the reputation of Lord’s as the ultimate ground at which cricketers of all levels wish to play.

His first season will be a challenging one, with five World Cup matches including the Final, Ireland’s inaugural Test match at Lord’s as well as the prospect of England facing Australia in an Ashes Series but we have no doubt that he will prove himself up to the task.

“We’re very much looking forward to Karl beginning his role and working alongside Mick Hunt for a short time before Mick begins his well-earned retirement.”

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Head Greenkeeper Talks Flower Meadows

Head Greenkeeper Talks Flower Meadows: In a special column, Rob Peers, head greenkeeper at Hever Castle Golf Club talks about an exciting first year in the job:

I took up my post as head greenkeeper at Hever Castle Golf Club just over a year ago – and what a year it’s been.

Head Greenkeeper Talks Flower Meadows

One of the greatest challenges has been a tropical heatwave that seems to have lasted all summer!

For the team at the Golf Club, watering this summer took on a new and interesting dimension with the addition of nine new flower meadows.

The meadows are situated in Hever Castle’s gardens and Hever Golf Course: they cover an area of 4,500 square metres on Lake Walk (in the Castle grounds) and the golf course itself.

Each of the nine selected areas had different considerations and their own micro climate, environment and purpose. It was really important to us to select sites that would improve bio-diversity and functionality in areas which had previously been dominated by aggressive species such as bramble and nettle.

My team nicknamed the first area they developed ‘Tom, Dick and Harry’, and it was the first point of contact as we passed through the fence from the golf course into the grounds of the castle. We felt when we entered this part of the castle’s beautiful grounds that we’d escaped!

When we began prepping the ground back in March we could hardly dare dream of the kaleidoscope of rainbow colours that would burst forth beside the Lake.

The fourteen species including Calendula officinalis (Marigold), Centaurea cyanus (Cornflower), Cosmos bipinnatus, Linum grandiflorum (Flax) and Papaver rheas (Common Poppy) have delighted visitors and the team alike.

We sowed the rainbow mix beside the lake in May and the flowers should bloom until November. This is my preferred mix and includes marigold, cosmos, flax and poppy – it looks great and is a very good pollinator.

A real highlight for me this year was the rediscovery of the Anne of Cleves Bower House folly.

I’d been walking in the woodland area with our CEO Duncan Leslie who was explaining the work that was ongoing on the Loggia in the castle grounds. The water in the lake had been lowered and as we walked beside, what I believe was the original path of the River Eden, I spotted a step in the water. I broke off suddenly from our conversation and rushed to take a closer look.

The steps were part of the folly, which had previously been hidden among the under-growth.

We believe the folly dates from the time of the Astors but it looks like they used medieval brick to create it, and there are two heraldic shields for Anne of Cleves.

It was thrilling to uncover it for the first time in years and bring it back to life with a more subtle and feminine flower mix for Anne.

We planted species such as Anethum graveolens (Dill), Borago officinalis (Borage), Callistephus Chinensis (China Aster) and Lupinus nanus (Lupin) here.

The meadow areas on the golf course itself have a more sympathetic visual appearance with more native and naturalised species from a mix called ‘Flora Britannica’ which includes Achillea millefolium (Yarrow), Aquilegia vulgaris (Common columbine), Borago officinalis (Borage) and Campanula carpatica (Tussock bellflower).

It not only looks great, but it fits in beautifully with the landscape and has also proved to be another fantastic pollinator.

The creation of the meadows has been a real boost for the team – when the flowers began appearing, it’s no exaggeration to say that we’d go down and giggle like school children as we marvelled at the changing floral landscape.

Even though the meadows are still in full bloom, my thoughts are turning to next year and to possible new meadow areas.

If you like meadows, then why not have a go – if you get the right seed mix and you prepare the ground well, then the results are spectacular.

I don’t know whether the flowers in the meadows would have been higher if we’d had more rainfall, and we can only speculate at the moment why some areas have dominant yellows and others have more pinks – we will continue to monitor their progress and note down the different habitats – the amount of light in one, and the subtle differences of soil in others, and see what happens next year.

Watch this space!

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