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FOOTBALL What’s in the shed


John Deere 33HP tractor SISIS Quadraplay SISIS Litamina SISIS slitter


SISIS dimple seeder Charterhouse Verti-Drain Ransomes Mastiff


Charterhouse top spreader Trimax tractor mounted rotary mower Baroness Saxon triple mower


Since Paul first took on the challenge ten years ago, his machinery list has improved significantly. “We received £10,000 in funding from the FA and money from the SITA Trust. This enabled us to purchase a brand-new tractor and various other pieces of machinery which have helped me provide better surfaces for the club and make the job that bit easier. I service all the machines myself, which helps reduce costs. The only thing I can’t do in-house is regrind the cutting cylinders. I take them to a local gentleman up the road; Peter James.”


SITA Trust is an ethical funding organisation dedicated to making lasting improvements to the natural environment and community life. The Trust is a not-for-profit company, a registered and accredited environmental body that operates under the Landfill Communities Fund distributing funds contributed by the recycling and resource management company SITA UK.


down, believe it or not, to £1,600 for this season as the club want to channel what they have into getting promoted. I want what is best for the club, so I will cut the cloth accordingly. I’m fortunate that we have outside football tournaments that take place, so any profit I make from the café at the weekend the club let me put it back into ground maintenance.”


Paul has taken advantage of the FA Pitch Improvement Programme to help improve his knowledge of professional groundsmanship. “I went to all the courses that they put on at North Riding FA. I have completed my Level 1, 2 and 3 Winter Pitch Maintenance as well, which has helped me improve the playing surfaces in the last few years.”


“In 2017, I was nominated by the club for Groundsman of the Year for the North East Region. The judges visited, looked at the pitch and I answered all their questions. I didn’t think anymore after that for months. I then received a letter telling me I had won. From there, I was entered into the National award, where I went down to St George’s Park and, lo and behold, I won


Step 7 National Groundsman of the Year, which was a very proud moment for me. I believe this coincided with the Pitch Improvement Programme and getting further education, plus working hard; the club is moving forward.” Recently, Paul has had a knee replacement operation which has, unfortunately, meant that he couldn’t take out a thorough renovation on the main pitch this summer but is grateful to his volunteers who stepped in for him while he was away. “We have a drop-in centre here at the club on a Thursday and two or three of the guys, who are ex steelworkers in their sixties, have got involved, and they love it. Richard Green has been cutting the pitches, Peter Millburn has been cutting and marking out and Roy, John and Swifty have been painting the fences and turnstiles and carrying out any general maintenance jobs for us. I can’t thank these guys enough for stepping up while I recovered from my operation. Due to me only coming back full time recently, I have had to let the main pitch recover naturally, alongside spreading one tonne of sand across both six yard


I cut most of the ground at 25mm in the summer and lift to 30mm in the winter to give it some protection


106 PC August/September 2019





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